SERVICE ECOSYSTEM: EMPOWERING TEXTILE ARTISANS’ COMMUNITIES TOWARDS A SUSTAINABLE FUTURE

Francesco Mazzarella, Carolina Escobar-Tello, Val Mitchell

Abstract


The global economic and environmental crisis seems to be leading to the end of a ‘linear economy’ based on consumption and waste, while setting the ground for redistributed micro-productions, inspired by new ethics of sustainability and cutting-edge economic models. With this in mind, this paper is focused on exploring textile artisans’ communities, bottom-up and human-centred aggregations embodying the craft atmosphere of a territory due to physical proximity and shared material cultural background. Such communities are engaged in giving form and meaning to local natural fibres and managing the process of making culturally and socially significant apparel. Literature on textile artisanship has shown the potential for the application of service design to empower collaborative communities and co-design relational services triggering holistic sustainability. Through participatory action research, this project intends to fill a gap within the strategic agenda, which could create sustainable interconnections within the
patchy artisan landscape. Therefore, this paper explores possible ways in which service design could strategically contribute to encourage textile artisans’ communities towards a sustainable future.

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