Skip to navigation Skip to main content

Darwin in Fashion. Innovation and Selection in Fashion.

Academic research

Darwin in Fashion. Innovation and Selection in Fashion

Dany Jacobs —

In The Empire of Fashion Gilles Lipovetsky (1994) showed how in the realm of fashion a culture of continuous innovation was created, which later spread to other industries. So, successful continuous innovation is at the core of any economic model of fashion. In this paper it is argued that it is useful to use the Darwinian framework of variation, selection and retention/speciation to under- stand and assess success in the field of fashion innovation. It allows us to think more systematically about possible success (‘fitness’) criteria in different selection environments. Moreover, evolution is always co-evolution: the interactive development of units and species with their relevant environments. This contribution is part of a larger project on the cultural aspects of all kinds of innovation (including technical innovation) which lead to my book Adding Values. The Cultural Side of Innovation (Jacobs, 2007).

Download article