EFHA : Connecting Academia with Fashion Heritage
The European Fashion Heritage Association (the EFHA) aims to help fashion GLAMS and brands to get better value from their cultural heritage assets by connecting them with new audiences. While doing research for a paper for her economics of fashion class, Carlijn, a master’s student, discovered the EFHA and the digital archive they offer. After navigating through the archive and using the material for her paper, she wanted to get more involved with the EFHA. She emailed Marco Rendina, the managing director of the EFHA to inquire about the possibilities. Her inquiry resonated with Marco, who was keen on improving the student and scholar stakeholder engagement with the EFHA. The EFHA had engaged with students through Wikipedia edit-a-thons and with scholars through their annual conferences. However, with the launch of Google Cultural Institute’s digital fashion heritage project, We Wear Culture, the need to improve this stakeholder engagement had become one of the opportunities the EFHA could take to distinguish itself from its new giant competitor. The case study also identified some of the main challenges the EFHA faced, such as; engaging student and scholars, the ambiguity of stakeholder groups, difficult user- experience accessing digital archives, unclear partnership statuses, and external competitors like Google’s Art and Culture project.
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