The Business of Fashion, Textiles and Technology (BFTT) Creative Research & Development Partnership is one of nine clusters and one policy and evidence centre funded under the multi-million pound Creative Industries Cluster Programme. The five-year industry-led project focusses on delivering innovation within the entire fashion and textile supply chain, with special attention given to positioning industry as agents of new technology and materials development.

It is intended that the project foster a new, creative business culture in which fashion, textile and technology businesses – from small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to multinational companies – can use R&D as a mechanism for growth. The project will also engage with business and Government to develop a pipeline of talent to staff the fashion, textile and technology businesses of the future, tapping into the STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Maths) agenda which aims to provide young people with the creative skills needed to support the sector.

The project includes seven challenges dedicated to developing an evidence base, supporting SMEs in engaging in high-value collaborative R&D, sustainable business practice, reimagining retail and consumer experiences, tackling the industry reliance on synthetic materials, developing new sustainable materials and building critical mass in new modes of making and manufacturing for fashion and textiles.

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