Wikipedia Edit-a-thon 2022

Wiki-editathon

February 26 is soon here again, and it is time for the yearly UCRF Wikipedia edit-a-thon!


After three consecutive years of Wikipedia edit-a-thons, the UCRF will again make concerted efforts to add information and references to Wikipedia. The “sustainable fashion” page has changed drastically since we set out in 2019. Looking back across the years, the UCRF’s diverse membership has made a great impact! But, it still needs attention.

While many references and discussions are in the right place, the page still needs our love and editing. And it is awaiting links to your top reports, books, and references! Please take a minute on February 26th and make a minor edit, add to the resources, or take a stab at the pages related to your area of expertise. Wikipedia is the first station for the curious public, and making sure the sources there are as accurate and legitimate as possible can make a significant impact!

More specifically, as “circularity” has become a more current topic across sustainability, there is a need to add more sources, references, and links on this sub-topic. The fiber section needs more scientific reports and accurate data, and we also need more discussions on circularity, supply chains, and regenerative agriculture.

So, on February 26th, even on the weekend, we hope volunteers from across the Union can collectively activate an ‘activist knowledge ecology’ by editing the sustainable fashion page on Wikipedia.

Being a recurring yearly event, we hope to help Wikipedia lead curious people towards excellent and accurate sources. As mentioned before, our diversity across the Union is our unique resource. Use your expertise and make minor edits to improve the subtopic you think requires better articulation.

We also hope our globally dispersed members could update the page on the topic of sustainable fashion beyond the English version. So if you are uncertain, start by fixing the page in your native language.

Editing on Wikipedia is not tricky at all. You can just jump in and get started by clicking the “edit” tab on the page you want to edit. Work in small steps, a sentence or reference at the time.

For a more extensive dive, here’s a guide to getting started editing more seriously on Wikipedia:

1. Familiarise yourself with how to edit a Wiki page. I recommend the resources here: http://www.artandfeminism.org/editing-kit/ (these pages focus on gender, but the underlying editing issues are all relevant). There are some Wiki principles to familiarise yourself with and some basic editing tools that will help you. 

2. Open https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Sustainable_fashion and click edit. 

3. Create a Wikipedia account if you want to. It is your choice, but it often helps when getting your edits through the process of the wikipedia editors. There is some guidance available to help you make various decisions by following the links. 

4. Choose a section to edit on the Sustainable Fashion Wikipedia page. To prevent ‘conflicts’ because different people are working on the same section, consider to work with about one sentence at the time. It isn’t the end of the world if more than one person edits the same section at the same time, but it will require some manual editing afterwards which won’t be much fun…!

5. Get going editing. Wikipedia is fairly intuitive and there are lots of links to help pages. Start with a small edit and build your confidence, or add one reference or link. There are no specific UCRF guidelines about what to edit other than Principle 1 of the Union of Concerned Researchers manifesto: Create an ‘activist knowledge ecology’, that is, to develop a system of knowledge about fashion sustainability that is concerned with how knowledge is organised and shared as well as the data points themselves and to direct such a system purposefully towards fostering change

  • Work to your expertise, cite peer-reviewed sources 
  • Be prepared for some edits to be deleted by moderators. It is worthwhile to keep a record of edits separately. 
  • What terms need adding to the page? For example, regenerative culture/agriculture? 

6. When you publish you will be asked to describe your changes – mention briefly what your edit is about.

7. You can use the ‘Talk’ tab at the top of the Wiki page to discuss issues with the wider Wikipedia community that is interested in editing the Sustainable Fashion page.

Good luck! And thank you for making the sources on sustainable fashion more accessible across the Internet!

Announcing a Themed Local Assembly in Oslo

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Blogroll / Local Assemblies

A twist on the usual UCRF Local Assembly format, this themed Local Assembly will concentrate on textile fibres. Points for discussion can be tabled by any UCRF member in advance or raised on the day.

Theme: Textile fibres, key themes and challenges

Date: 8 March 2022
Time: 8am – 9:30am local time. Light refreshments will be available.
Location: OsloMet, Oslo, Norway
Address: Stensberggata 26, 0170 Oslo

The Local Assembly gathering will be in-person, but the themes for discussion can be tabled by UCRF members world-wide to ensure that fibre-related concerns in all locations are present.

All participants will be invited to share their fibre knowledge, these will include UCRF members and fibre and LCA experts Ingun Grimstad Klepp and Kirsi Laitala. A summary will be circulated following the event.

Register your interest by 28 February here.

Declaración sobre la COP26

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Activities / Open Letters / Written statements

La emergencia climática es una amenaza existencial para la vida en la Tierra.  En el período previo a las negociaciones sobre el cambio climático de la COP26 en Glasgow, UCRF subraya temas clave que considera críticos para que el sector de la moda avance hacia este nuevo e impredecible período:

Activar enfoques de sistemas completos

Las respuestas más poderosas son aquellas que comienzan considerando el propósito, el alcance, la gobernanza, los objetivos y las reglas del sistema de la moda. UCRF aboga porque el propósito del sistema de la moda se aleje de la lógica del crecimiento económico y se oriente hacia el servicio a la Tierra a fin de generar nuevas oportunidades para todas las especies y las generaciones futuras.

Escalar la actividad para que se ajuste a los límites de la Tierra

Dado que el propósito de un sistema modificado para la moda se establece dentro de los límites planetarios, UCRF pide un compromiso claro con la planificación de los caminos para la transición a un sector de la moda más diverso y más pequeño en un plazo de 5 a 10 años.  Esto se encuentra dentro del marco de tiempo crítico de intervención propuesto por el IPCC.

Cuestionar las consecuencias imprevistas y muy reales de la “disrupción” impulsada por la tecnología

Si bien se necesitan intervenciones dentro de un statu quo insostenible, la celebración generalizada de la “disrupción” tiende a dejar sus consecuencias sin cuestionar.  Hasta ahora, demasiados casos de “disrupción” impulsada por la tecnología han desplazado la acción hacia las plataformas, han invisibilizado la mano de obra y han despojado a los sindicatos de poder. Si se produce una disrupción, UCRF insiste en que se hagan preguntas más pertinentes: ¿Qué poblaciones y organizaciones asumirán los costes del cambio? ¿Quién limpiará los escombros del sistema roto?

Construir comunidades de cambio y práctica

UCRF está comprometida y con alternativas genuinas a los impulsos actuales hacia un mayor crecimiento, extracción y concentración de poder. Estas alternativas se comprometen a no dejar a nadie atrás y a compartir conocimientos sobre cómo actuar en la moda en un mundo de cambio climático. UCRF invita a otros a unirse juntos en esta tarea.

Vivir dentro de las preguntas

El trabajo de cambio es un proceso. UCRF aboga por hacer continuamente preguntas críticas sobre los sistemas, como quién saldrá ganando y quién se verá perjudicado por las políticas y decisiones, y denuncia las agendas ocultas para trabajar por un cambio estructural duradero.

Actuar y encarnar nuevas formas de ser, hacer, valorar y actuar

La amenaza existencial del cambio climático requiere que el trabajo se centre en aumentar la adopción de diversas “otras formas” en el sector de la moda que rompen las ideologías y los enfoques subyacentes. UCRF considera que esto contribuirá a cambiar lo que significa saber sobre moda y cómo actuar en tiempos de emergencia planetaria.

Llamada al coraje

El trabajo de cambiar a una economía de post crecimiento no es fácil y puede ser desafiante e inducir miedo a enfrentarse como oposición del status quo y de la ideología del crecimiento sin restricciones. UCRF se solidariza con todos aquellos que encuentran resistencia en su trabajo o que están actuando para que los sistemas cambien en circunstancias difíciles y en contra de intereses creados. En esta coyuntura crítica para la emergencia climática, UCRF pide a todos los actores que elijan coraje y acción.

Gracias a Gema Gomez por esta traducción. La versión en inglés está aquí.

UCRF – Member of the Month – Miguel Angel Gardetti

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Member of the Month

UCRF is running a ‘Member of the Month’ feature on this blog, where a member, selected at random from the membership database, is sent five questions to give us all an overview of our members. Our tenth participant is Miguel Angel Gardetti.

>How would you sum up your research / practice?

Given the civilizational crisis produced by the Western system -with an anthropocentric, reductionist, modernist, colonial, capitalist and materialist logic of growth-, I have integrated into my study and research the vision of important Latin American intellectuals, thinkers and academics. For example, Arturo Escobar (Colombia), Alberto Acosta (Ecuador), Eduardo Gudynas (Uruguay), Maristella Svampa (Argentina), Enrique Dussel (Argentina), Boaventura de Sousa Santos (Brazil), Ramón Grosfoguel (Puerto Rico), among others. All of them are studied in careers related to anthropology and sociology, but not in careers related to design and fashion, which is a mistake. We are not including voices that can bring us clarity and ideas -biocentric- on the road to sustainability.

>How do you address fashion and sustainability in your work?

Many thinkers mentioned above ignore the importance of indigenous cosmovisions and the “rights of nature”- the latter having constitutional status in some Latin American countries such as Bolivia and Ecuador. At the Sustainable Textile Center, we are developing a project that incorporates and integrates these unheard indigenous voices. This goes further and deeper than simply engaging with stakeholders.

>What are the conflicts you have encountered around fashion and sustainability in your work?

The central conflict in the current integration of fashion and sustainability is that this integration is driven by economic, capitalist and consumerist ideas. This is not the way.

>What do you consider the key sources and cases when it comes to fashion and sustainability?

Some of the resources that the “decolonizing Fashion” groups at UCRF have been very interesting to me. For example:
Research Collective for Decolonising Fashion
Dr Adrienne Keene
Bedford, C. (2020) ‘Decolonizing a Fashion School: A Critical Reflection on Fashion Education in Australia through an Indigenous Perspective’, Fashion Theory, 24:6, 947-949.

I think UCRF should promote this group with broader and deeper objectives.

>Could you recommend some less known sources or cases you think should be more widely shared?

Although they are in Spanish, the following two sources seem important to me:
Gudynas E (2014). Derechos de la Naturaleza – Etica Biocéntrica y Políticas Ambientales.
Acosta A. (2013) El Buen Vivir. Sumak Kawsay: Una oportunidad para imaginar otros mundos.

Thank you very much for your insights Miguel!

Communiqué from Local Assembly Alaska

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Blogroll / Local Assemblies

The Alaska local assembly took place at the Museum of Anchorage on 4th October 2021. Sixteen participants joined, including museum staff, local businesses and designers. Most participants were born in Alaska, and all participants lived in Alaska. The list of attendees was not industry specific and a range of backgrounds was represented by participants, including a nationally renowned textile artist, an Inupiat fashion designer and 5th generation skin sewer, local designers and re-designers, small scale makers, and retail entrepreneurs. 

Board member Lynda Grose introduced the UCRF manifesto and guidelines for participating with active listening. Participants then broke into three groups of 5-6 people to discuss the UCRF manifesto points and to identify which ones resonated the most strongly for them. Museum staff  helped capture information and facilitate discussions. The outputs and insights are listed below.

Manifesto point #6: Take a leadership role in debunking existing ideas
– Policies today offer too many outs for not making meaningful change.
– Sustainability in fashion wasn’t a consideration before western industrial times.
– Diversify the voices in fashion and sustainability – note who isn’t invited to bring their perspective?
– Amplify and strengthen the relationship between humans and art.
– Shift away from the culture of new which isn’t always better.
– New standards/rubric of production.

Manifesto point #2: Advocate for whole systems change
– Leverage Alaska’s unique relationships.
– Disconnected (within the landscape, and from the lower 48).
– Humanize the producers.
– Can we imagine a future not rooted in consumption?
– What is a possible future with minimum negative impact?
– Full transparency and information.
– Carbon footprint disclosure is a given.
– Design, business models and purchasing for longevity.

Other themes to emerge:

Resources
Fashion fulfils cultural and identity needs..’your pants are too white..they need to be dirty airforce one’s’’ is a real consideration.
Fashion is local.
There is no AK pipeline in fashion here.
AK markets/infrastructure/materials for fashion are very undeveloped/limited.
Fashion industry isn’t in AK..so there’s an opportunity to build something from the ground up.
No wool at Joann’s Fabrics for example
Iceland has wool…..AK has ? to exchange?

Funding and investment alternatives
Balance/manage change. Invest now in the change.
Health covered and living wage guaranteed ($16/hour).
Collective bargaining.
Non-profit and worker co-op structures.
Set up a trust for local venture capital – to support distribution of beneficial impacts, foster business partnerships.
Establish royalty-based groups.
Attain finance and legal help.
Affordable (shared) spaces.
Develop a community dividend model (like the pipeline).
Micro mills (investing business development funds into value-aligned projects/businesses.
Local clothing retail (like RTR etc).
Provide resources to B corporation standards.

Knowledge/Education
Informal education passed on through individuals, families, groups and communities.
Further develop mended/upcycled concepts specific to Alaska.
There’s a cultural pride in being able to repair, especially in the interior (duck taped jackets).
Make repair visible.
Develop new vocabulary around repair and re-use.
Kits for making and mending.
Education events with making at the center.
Include mending and making in school curriculum.
Creating a culture of making, vintage/resale.
How can we tap into people’s haptic or making experience to push making/mending?
Showcase (AK specific) upcycled fashion.
Including practical Alaska interior examples (Duct tape, Tyvek etc).
Workforce development.
Create classes and sharing of information.
‘Community college of making’ through co-operative extension.
What resources (materials and skills) are here in Alaska?
Build skills in landfill diversion.
‘Buy old/value add’ skills.

UCRF Board member Lynda Grose’s observations:

Alaska has:
-indigenous communities, knowledge, skills, technologies and subsistence lifestyles to reference firsthand and integrated into daily life awareness.
-Alaskan fashion materials may challenge pre-conceived notions of ‘sustainability’.
-Access to vast landscapes and complex ecosystems are referenced first hand, integrated into daily life awareness, and are at the forefront of considerations between fashion identity and functional design.
-a culture of resilience, ‘crustiness’, grit and resourcefulness, out of necessity.
-a culture of taking care of each other. (historically, Alaskans leave their cabins open and well stocked in the interior, in case someone needs shelter and provisions, for example).
-a population that is compelled to buy practical, well-functioning, good quality garments due to harsh weather conditions.
-limited resources, due to its geographic separation and lack of a design school has constrained fashion development. This can be leveraged to build a unique approach to fashion and sustainability.
-a culture of problem solving and finding multiple ways to do something, based on available (and scarce) resources.
– a massive land mass, but a small population making it relatively easy to think collectively.
– an open slate. Issues are on the surface. An ’it’s what we make it’ , authentic, real, attitude is prevalent. (My dad said: ‘should people not work on the pipeline?’).
-unique policy histories, including the land settlement act and pipeline/oil dividend that could inform new policy models for fashion and sustainability.
-a location in the circumpolar north , which is shared with Russia, Canada, Finland, Sweden which challenges preconceived notions of ‘locally available materials’.