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Chairs rocking fashion.


A chair reflects a company's desire to position itself sustainably at the heart of teaching and research, in the fields of expertise supported by the school's faculty.

Institut Français de la Mode offers several types of chairs, depending on the company's wishes:

  • Research Chairs are dedicated to a specific research area. They provide a professor with the means to develop his or her research and allow the company to be associated with his publications.
  • Teaching chairs reflect the company's desire to be visible to students and to take part in curriculum development.
  • Finally, a company may decide to finance a research and teaching chair that combines the two objectives of the company, namely to be associated with the professor's research work and to participate in his or her teaching.

In 2016, Première Vision SA, the leading organizer of international professional trade shows for fashion industries, and Institut Français de la Mode have created a Chair for “The Economics of Creative Materials for Fashion”.

Research activities of the Chair (created for a minimum duration of 3 years) focus on the establishment of an international economic indicator for materials – textiles and leather – for creative fashions, the analysis of short-term developments in the industry, and the oversight of industry-specific studies.

In order to follow developments in the industry as closely as possible and to adapt to the needs of international markets, Première Vision and Institut Français de la Mode have been collaborating for several years. Together, they analyze how fashion markets are evolving, shifts in consumer behavior and changes in buying schedules, among other developments.

Building upon this experience, Institut Français de la Mode and Première Vision have decided initially to concentrate the Chair on three main dimensions:

  • The Première Vision-Institut Français de la Mode barometer measures the evolution of the high-end and creative fashion sector. For Première Vision exhibitors, and for all high added-value creative materials businesses, the Première Vision-Institut Français de la Mode barometer establishes an index of observation and evaluation for activity within the creative fashion industry. It also creates a way for professionals to compare and position themselves with respect to the creative industry index on an annual basis.
  • A study on international sourcing, which helps better understand the breakdown and evolution of import flows in clothing/leather worldwide, analyzes fluctuations in prices, and the breakdown and evolution of sourcing.
  • As part of its research on sustainable fashion, a survey was conducted in 2019 among 5,000 consumers in the United States and Europe (France, Germany, Italy). This study offers an international comparison of these new consumer behaviors, from the perception of the existing offer to the reality of the purchase.

The Première Vision Chair is headed by Gildas Minvielle, Professor and Director of the Economic Observatory of Institut Français de la Mode.

View the 2019 study on sustainable fashion

Gildas Minvielle — Director of the Economic Observatory

Kering and Institut Français de la Mode joined forces on 14 November 2019 to launch the IFM-Kering Sustainability Chair. The two fashion and luxury industry players share the common ambition of creating a high-level research and teaching center in the fashion industry, which integrates all aspects of sustainable development, including Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).

The chair is under the direction of Mrs. Andrée-Anne Lemieux, PhD in industrial engineering and professor in charge of all initiatives related to sustainable development at Institut Français de la Mode.

The chair has two main objectives:

1. To promote research and teaching on sustainable fashion (ready-to-wear, shoes, leather goods and other accessories) for environmental, social and societal aspects, which implies :

  • understanding the major ecological issues of our century, such as climate change and biodiversity loss, and acting to reduce the impact generated by the fashion sector
  • studying and developing economic models for sustainable, circular fashion that respect the environment and people
  • to study and propose ways of controlling the supply chain processes and the adequacy of the global value and production chain, at all its levels, to the ecological and social challenges;
  • identify innovations concerning materials, manufacturing processes, traceability, logistics, transport and the end-of-life of a (fashion) product;
  • to propose appropriate modes of communication at physical and digital points of sale in order to inform consumers so that they can exercise their own responsibility.

2. Take into account the "ecology of creation" from the beginning of the creation process. Given the central place that the designer - and his creative teams - occupy within a company, it is crucial to take into account the issues of sustainable development from the beginning of the creation process - this is what we call "the ecology of creation". This covers :

  • identifying ways for creative teams to develop an ecological culture
  • proposing models (criteria, operating methods, etc.) for new sustainable creative offers with strong appeal and analyzing examples of sustainable designs (new materials, slow fashion, etc.);
  • the construction of a language (and a storytelling for designers) that facilitates communication between the designers and the other stakeholders of the Houses;
  • measuring the environmental impact of creative projects: sourcing, transparency and traceability of materials, production processes, packaging, reuse and recycling of waste, etc;
  • the development of tools and dashboards to help creative teams take ownership of environmental and social issues.

The work of the Chair will enable the development of teaching in various formats on the themes listed above in initial and higher education, from vocational to doctoral level. The research work will include the supervision of doctoral students on university theses, contributions to scientific publications and participation in conferences related to the Chair's programme and issues.

Andrée-Anne Lemieux, Directrice de la Chaire

On Friday, June 14, 2024, Mane -the first French group and one of the worldwide leaders of the Fragrance and Flavour industry- and Institut Français de la Mode (IFM) joined forces to create a research and teaching chair on Diversity & Inclusion in Beauty, headed by research professor Caroline Ardelet, PhD. This 3-year partnership will contribute to a reflection on the impact of beliefs and practices on the representation of beauty worldwide.

The Diversity & Inclusion in Beauty Chair will pursue 2 major objectives:

  • The first is to document the diversity of beliefs and practices related to beauty (perfumery, make-up, skincare and related products) by seeking to offer a global vision of beauty practices around the world, from clothing to tattoos, cosmetic surgery, and the relationship with hair, natural or magical products.
  • The second is to understand the impact of the industry (beauty economic ecosystem, brands, suppliers, distributors, media) and society at large (normative frameworks, perception biases) on the construction and deconstruction of beauty standards worldwide.

The Chair's projects aim to bring together students from various backgrounds and will involve academics and industry professionals.

In this context, we are launching:

  • a Mane x IFM challenge that will bring together 20 students from IFM and the NYU Stern Business School on various themes such as Chinese pride, non-gendered beauty, natural and ancestral gestures, the relationship with innovation and technology (AI)
  • a Mane certificate programme to deepen knowledge of beauty and diversity
  • a collective publication compiling the Chair's findings
  • an annual symposium

Caroline Ardelet, Chair Director

The CHANEL and le19M Chair in Fashion Savoir-Faire pursues three objectives:

  • carry out research to provide a documented and multidimensional approach to the relationships between industry, society and the Fashion Métiers d’art
  • establish an analysis of the links between savoir-faire, creation and innovation
  • set up a pedagogical component to give a new dimension to the transmission of Métiers d’art knowledge to IFM students and other audiences.

All this work helps develop academic content, in particular the creation of a specific course, along with the integration of new content from the research work into existing courses.

The CHANEL and le19M Chair in Fashion Savoir-Faire is directed by Professor Émilie Hammen, who has a PhD in Art History (Université Paris 1 Panthéon - Sorbonne) and a background in design, both in applied arts at the ESAA Duperré and in fashion design at IFM. A teacher and exhibition curator, her publications focus on the history of fashion, its historiography and the links between fashion and the avant-garde.

Access to the Chair's page

Emilie Hammen, Directrice de la Chaire