Conversations with Industry Experts 2022

The course Digital Fashion Communication: Conversations with Industry Experts 2022 was taught by Dr. Nadzeya Sabatini in collaboration with Joanna Liu (TA).

This course aims to bridge theoretical concepts presented during the Master in Digital Fashion Communication courses to the industry reality and the daily life issues of industry experts working in the digital fashion domain. The guest speakers working both in the fashion domain and digital agencies, coming from international corporations and start-ups, have been invited to share their challenges and solutions. This course was also brought the experiences of USI alumni working in the digital fashion domain, who shared with the students their career paths, daily working life, and future professional scenarios.

The learning methods of the course was included ad-hoc pre-reading materials, introductory discussions and debriefing sessions. In terms of evaluation procedures and grading criteria, the final assessment was based on a group project, individual in-class participation, and a final individual written report.

The customized conversations have been set up with guest speakers from a wide range of fashion industry. The guests that shared their insights with the students were:

Also former students of the Master in Digital Fashion Communication: Alessia Anicito, Isabella Pezze’, Laura Cadenazzi, Saji Nageswara, togeather with Paolo Colombo, GUESS Talent Acquisition shared their experiences working at a major fashion brand.

In the class, our master students were divided into six groups, which are responsible for the conversations for each lecture. The group activities include managing the class conversation with the guests and publishing a summary post about the conversation on LinkedIn (and eventually on other social media platforms) by the end of the week. These activities motivate and engage the students. In addition, interacting with the guests during the lectures allowed our students to gain first-hand knowledge from different areas of the fashion industry.

As an innovative point in this year’s program, we invited Silvia Invrea, head of USI’s Career & Services Department to the classroom to provide her tips to the master students to improve their resumes.

“Fashionable wearables and smart textiles” is a carefully chosen theme for this year’s group project. The groups received the pointed topics, which were:

Group 1. Smart and intelligent textiles;

Group 2. Smart shoes, socks and clothing;

Group 3. Smart watches and glasses;

Group 4. Smart jewelry (rings, belts, bracelets, earrings, etc.);

Group 5. Sport and wellness trackers;

Group 6. Beauty, skincare, and clinical sensors (e.g. wellbeing and biophysical monitoring).

The focus of the collaborative group’s work was to benchmark existing technological solutions and their application in the fashion industry and to evaluate how brands communicate such technological innovations.

Based on the interviews done during the semester, industry and academic articles they read, the groups were able to present their benchmarking findings and provide the recommendations they would give to the company producing the wearable device that is planning to launch for Gen Z. All companies were openly selected from different geographic areas.

Three external experts – dr. Andreas Schmeil from USI and Andrea Lentini, Francesca Giudice and Ledia Malecaj from the Lifestyle -Tech Competence Center were invited to participate in the assessment of the group project.

The individual written report has two tasks. The first one is to propose a digital transformation solution for a company in the fashion industry that may need a digital transformation. The second task is to describe their dream job and explain what skills and competencies the student needs to acquire to reach this goal, along with five practical steps on how they can achieve their goal.

We are happy to end this course with the satisfaction of everyone. We have taken the feedback from the students in the last class and will continue with innovative and creative ideas for the next year.