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Family and Consumer Sciences
Yoon Jin Ma
Family and Consumer Sciences
The purpose of this study is to evaluate various fashion brands on their practices of diversity, equity and inclusion. Diversity, equity and inclusion, or “DEI” practices in fashion brands can be demonstrated through the brands’ overall business practices, marketing and brand representation, company culture and manufacturing and sourcing strategies. Within the last five years, many fashion brands have evaluated their current strategies and updated their business practices to reflect the fast changing and more inclusive world around us. For the current study, 20 different brands were evaluated. These brands were grouped into four different categories: Luxury Goods, Fast Fashion, Reputably Socially Responsible and Fan Favorites. Luxury brands were chosen based on item value and popularity, including Gucci, Burberry, Stella McCartney, Balenciaga and Louis Vuitton. Fast Fashion brands were chosen based off of the most popular low value but high design volume retailers, and include Shein, H&M, Forever 21, Zara and Uniqlo. The socially responsible brands were chosen based on their reputation of social responsibility, including Patagonia, Girlfriend Collective, Everlane, ABLE, and Outdoor Voices. Finally, the Fan Favorites were selected because they are all everyday retailers found in local shopping malls, and include American Eagle Outfitters, Nike, Victoria’s Secret, Gap Inc., and Urban Outfitters. The data collection was completed via web search and the data were coded based on how the company fit into the given criteria, the answer to the question being presented, where the information was found and finally the number of clicks to find the information needed to answer the question. First, each brands’ company profile and brand demographics were evaluated through the brands’ mission/vision statement, their product distinction, target audience, number of retail stores, target audience, founding date and location, number of employees and finally their current revenue. Next, DEI were then broken up into three categories with questions respective to each term. In diversity, each brand was evaluated with questions under the subcategories of workplace leadership and workplace culture. In equity, transparency and environmental sustainability were evaluated, while in inclusion, company culture, marketing and brand representation and product line were examined. According to the findings, it was apparent that little to no of the brands met the criteria for all categories. The study shows that while many brands are headed in the right direction in terms of DEI, as an industry we still have a very long way to come.
McCleish, Danielle, "DIVERSITY, EQUITY, AND INCLUSION EFFORTS OF FASHION RETAILERS" (2022). University Research Symposium. 389.