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Sustainable Fashion: The Issues, Challenges, and Prospects

Vol 7 , Issue 2 , July - December 2020 | Pages: 74-94 | Research Paper  

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Author Details ( * ) denotes Corresponding author

1. * Mousumi Sengupta, Professor, PGDM, SDM Institute for Management Development, Mysore, Karnataka, India (
2. Nilanjan Sengupta, Professor, PGDM, SDM Institute for Management Development, Mysore, Karnataka, India (

Fashion industry has encountered several sustainability challenges, categorised as environmental, employment-related, and social. Issues such as, engaging bonded labour, child labour and using non-biodegradable ingredients leading to pollution of ocean and land surfaces, and degradation of soil and deforestation-related problems, have been some of the significant challenges for the industry. Today’s consumers and regulatory authorities are more aware of such sustainability challenges, glaring at the fashion industry and the concept of fashion, resulting into increasingly changing habits and lifestyle, in terms of consuming fashion. This has propelled the fashion companies to initiate and adopt the idea of sustainable fashion. The fashion industry has had to re-assess the potential value-addition from adopting and practicing sustainability for their businesses, when embedded directly at the core of the company’s value proposition and consistently throughout the company’s supply chain. It will also lead to reduction of costs as more audited results will become the basis for budget allocation for sustainable business practices in future for these companies in this sector. Such a scenario will usher in more sustainable and humane practices in the fashion industry creating a win-win situation for all relevant parties concerned. The present paper makes an attempt to look at the various issues, prospects and challenges of sustainable fashion.


Sustainability; Fashion industry; Environment; Sustainable fashion.

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