I had the opportunity to lead the communication strategy for FIREup, a research project and digital platform that aims to connect the UK’s designer fashion industry with academic researchers through a live, dynamic online space.
The project enables links to be made between fashion enterprises and university research, stimulating new partnerships, collaborative projects and interactive knowledge exchange. FIREup aims to catalyse research and development as drivers of business innovation, advancing company goals and sustainable economic growth. FIREup was developed by UAL’s London College of Fashion, Central Saint Martins and Chelsea College of Art and Design, and is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council. I also worked closely with the Centre for Sustainable Fashion, using fashion to drive change, build a sustainable future and improve the way we live.
My role included interviewing designers and academic partners; working on seed funding projects with designers such as Christopher Raeburn and Michelle Lowe-Holder; writing funding bids; and preparing outcomes for publication and conferences. This position also included diverse relationship-building opportunities at different levels within the industry; helping SMEs to access the wider designer fashion ecosystem in order to promote their products, accessing new contacts and tapping into academic/entrepreneurial expertise; as well as working with organisations such the UKFT, Centre for Fashion Enterprise and the Society of Dyers and Colourists.