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H&M opens applications for Global Change Award 2022

By Danielle Wightman-Stone

25 Aug 2021

Business

Image: courtesy of the H&M Foundation

The H&M Foundation has announced that its Global Change Award is returning for 2022, after being paused by the pandemic, and is calling on early-stage innovations challenging to transform the fashion industry to apply.

The Global Change Award, launched in 2015 by non-profit H&M Foundation, in collaboration with Accenture and the KTH Royal Institute of Technology, is seeking early-stage innovations that are contributing to a planet positive fashion industry by addressing the earth’s global commons: land, water, oceans, climate and biodiversity.

For the 6th edition, H&M Foundation has also changed the scope for the award, where it previously recognised ideas that can make the fashion industry circular it is now looking for solutions that address one or several of the Earth’s global commons to create a planet positive fashion future.

This new approach is to offer a “more holistic approach in order for the fashion industry to achieve radical change before 2030 and fulfil the UN Sustainable Development Goals,” explained H&M in the press release.

Erik Bang, innovation lead at the H&M Foundation, said in a statement: “We believe focusing on land, water, oceans, climate and biodiversity will lead to a true shift for the fashion industry, transforming this industry into a planet positive one.

“With all creative innovations out there ready to scale, there is real hope that the fashion industry can become truly sustainable. We are really excited to see what applications we will get as we gear up and launch this new scope.”

Five winners will be selected by an international expert panel with extensive knowledge covering the global commons, fashion, business, investments, entrepreneurship and innovation. The winners will share a grant of 1 million euros and get access to a one-year-long GCA Impact Accelerator to help accelerate their ideas and provide them with mentoring and support.

Karl-Johan Persson, board member of H&M Foundation and chairman of H&M Group, added: “The fashion industry urgently needs to absorb game-changing planet positive solutions. We want to help speed up this process by supporting early-stage innovations and make them available to the wider market.”

The application period runs from August 25 to October 20 and the winners will be announced in April 2022.

The H&M Foundation has so far handed out a total of 5 million euros in grants through the Global Change Award.