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H&M Foundation launches fifth edition of its Global Change Award

By Huw Hughes



The H&M foundation has opened the fifth round of its Global Change Award and is offering one million euros to five innovators with ideas to make the fashion industry more circular.

The winners - who are each year selected by an international expert panel, with knowledge working within fashion, sustainability, circularity and innovation - will also get access to a one-year Innovation Accelerator Program taking them to Stockholm, New York and Hong Kong.

In the accelerator H&M Foundation, Accenture and the KTH Royal Institute of Technology - who collaborate with H&M on The Global Change Award - will help the winners to develop and scale their ideas.

Winners must put forward ideas that “have the potential to make fashion circular and to scale”, while other criteria include “novelty, that the idea is economically sustainable and that the innovation team is committed to making a difference.”

H&M seeks innovators to make fashion more circular

Karl-Johan Persson, H&M CEO and board member of the H&M Foundation, said in a statement: “In its fifth year, the Global Change Award has proven a great gateway for innovators to enter the fashion industry and transform it from the inside.

“We've seen previous winners move from sketching table to market - but more importantly, inspiring a new generation of creatives, scientists and entrepreneurs to reduce the planetary impact of the fashion industry through innovation. The next big idea that will change the game can come from anyone anywhere. So, if you have an idea you believe in this is the place to go.”

Erik Bang, Innovation Lead at the H&M Foundation, added: “This year we look for innovations within three themes; ideas putting the consumer at the center, digital ideas connecting the dots throughout the fashion value chain, and design ideas with a circular mindset - from garments to the packages we ship clothes in. The common denominator is the urgent opportunity the themes provide for fashion to operate within the planetary boundaries.”

Since its launch in 2015, the Global Change Award has received over 14,000 entries from 182 countries.

The submission deadline for applicants is 16 October 2019 and the five winners are announced at the Grand Award Ceremony in Stockholm City Hall in April 2020.

Photo credit: H&M media gallery

Global Change Award
H&M Foundation
Sustainable Fashion
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