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The CEO Agenda is a guide to what every CEO in fashion needs to prioritise to future-proof their company. The publication outlines the most pressing issues and the biggest opportunities for environmental and social impact and provides guidance on how to move from words to action.

Since the first edition of the CEO Agenda in 2018, The CEO Agenda reflects the values and aspirations of our Strategic Partners and advisers, a diverse group of high-profile fashion companies that include ASOS, BESTSELLER, H&M Group, Kering, Li & Fung, Nike, PVH Corp., Sustainable Apparel Coalition and Target.

CEO Agenda COVID-19 Edition

Published by Global Fashion Agenda

With contributions from Mckinsey & Company


Through a multi-year strategic knowledge partnership, Global Fashion Agenda and McKinsey & Company aim to present research and a fact base to complement the priorities outlined in the CEO Agenda; which intend to guide and mobilise industry players in taking bold action on sustainability.


As our industry grapples with the destabilising effects and long-lasting consequences of this worldwide pandemic, sustainability risks becoming a secondary priority. However, we believe that sustainability can function as an organising principle to build a stronger future.

This COVID-19 edition of the CEO Agenda presents six opportunities for fashion executives to rethink and rebuild a sustainable more resilient fashion industry. 


CEO Agenda 2020

Published by Global Fashion Agenda


This document articulates the eight most crucial sustainability priorities for the fashion industry, offering clear guidance on where to focus their efforts. Within these eight priorities, the CEO Agenda is divided into two key sections: four core priorities for immediate implementation and four transformational priorities for fundamental change that require collaborative structures and investments.


The current model has served as powerful engine for global growth and development for the past 100 years, but we believe there is a compelling business case for those who invest in long-term social and environmental sustainability, beyond short-term financial incentives. While we acknowledge that changing established practices is not an easy feat, we also remain convinced that the fashion industry can act as an inspirational forerunner.

We urge you as industry leaders to investigate new business models outside current market mechanisms to drive change, implement innovation and tap into collaborative and progressive business opportunities. This is essential not only to future-proof your business, but it is also crucial for humanity to operate within planetary boundaries and to meet the needs of future generations.

Core priorities for immediate implementation

Transformational priorities for fundamental change

2020 Spotlight

Biodiversity describes the variety of life on Earth and its natural systems, includes the variability of living organisms and the diversity within species, between species and of ecosystems. It represents the life support system of the Earth, with human livelihoods directly dependent on genetic, species and ecosystem diversity and function.

In this spirit, the CEO Agenda includes a spotlight on biodiversity among its existing priorities and provides further guidance for fashion brands to take action

CEO Agenda 2019

Published by Global Fashion Agenda


This document articulates the eight most crucial sustainability priorities for the fashion, industry offering clear guidance on where to focus their efforts. Within these eight priorities, the CEO Agenda is divided into two key sections: Four core priorities for immediate implementation and four transformational priorities for fundamental change that require collaborative structures and investments.


While the priorities fundamentally remain unchanged from 2018, we have updated them to reflect the latest industry developments. The CEO Agenda should serve as a reference point for you and your peers. As fashion leaders you are in a unique position to transform your industry—and for the better.

Your decisions affect the entire value chain. You hold the power to make sustainability an integral part of your business strategy and by extension, the entire fashion industry. We encourage you to exercise this responsibility, and we hope the CEO Agenda 2019 will guide your efforts.

Learn more about the eight priorities

CEO Agenda 2018

Published by Global Fashion Agenda

Immediate action is needed to uphold standards for all people employed along the value chain

The CEO Agenda 2018 outlines seven priorities that lead fashion’s sustainability transformation. The CEO Agenda 2018 comprises two sections, which includes three core priorities for immediate implementation; and four transformational priorities for the long term. It draws on the most pressing issues and the biggest opportunities for environmental and social impact as outlined in our Pulse of the Fashion Industry 2017 report. Through the CEO Agenda, we aim to enhance the conversation about sustainability and encourage fashion industry leaders to take action.


Fashion brand CEOs’ decisions affect the entire value chain. These individuals have the authority to make sustainability an integral part of their business strategy and operational model. For this reason, we created the CEO Agenda to support their decision making.

At the same time, we hope that the CEO Agenda will serve as an invitation for other key players, such as investors, suppliers, government officials, researchers and NGOs to engage with fashion brands about the steps needed to make the fashion industry more sustainable.


Close CFS+ Programme
13th October Day 2
  • 3:00 - 4:15 PM CEST
    CFS Originals

    CFS Originals are pre-produced segments created by Global Fashion Agenda; they will take you behind the scenes, where you can meet the creative minds shaping our industry. CFS Originals is designed to provide entertainment, engagement, and education for all viewers.

    Click below to add the full 3:00 - 4:15 PM CEST Originals segment to your calendar, and scroll down to learn about each segment of CFS Originals.

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    Gucci President and CEO, Marco Bizzarri, is one of our industry’s leaders driving change. Having launched the CEO Carbon Neutral Challenge late last year, he’s making bold commitments for Gucci - and leading by example with Gucci's own climate strategy. Eva Kruse will virtually meet Marco Bizzarri for an honest conversation about value, nature, tackling the climate crisis in the wake of COVID-19 and what’s needed next.

    Fashion is fun, fabulous and fancy, but did you know that fashion is also closely linked to biodiversity? This explainer explores the substantial negative impact that the fashion industry has had on the total variety of life on Earth, known as biodiversity. From there, it goes one step further by explaining how fashion can evolve from being part of the problem to being part of the solution – by highlighting different solutions.

    Together with her Co-Founder Amrit Kumar, Mriga Kapadiya is the Co-Founder, Creative Director and CEO of NORBLACK NORWHITE, a women-led, creative house and fashion label based in India. Systematic transformation drives Mriga Kapadiya’s Real Talk message, which celebrates the grey space of culture through style by shifting corporate success to a holistic approach.

    High volume fashion and planetary boundaries collide in an important conversation, framed by the theme Redesigning Value, from two different stakeholder positions; Helena Helmersson, CEO of H&M Group, meets Professor Johan Rockström, Director of Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research. This intimate and in-depth discussion takes place in Helena’s summer house in the Swedish forest.

    Can the idea of equal partnerships change the industry mindset and advance collective progress? This explainer digs deeper into two different types of supply chain partnerships: Transactional vs. Relationship based. Watch and learn what it takes for the industry to shape a common future stitched solidly together with trust and equal partnerships.

    Mostafiz Uddin, Managing Director of Denim Expert Ltd. and Founder and CEO of Bangladesh Apparel Exchange (BAE) will be representing the voice, culture and experience of millions of garment makers and factory owners during the pandemic. Mostafiz Uddin is meeting Eva Kruse in this essential discussion about equal partnerships and how to build mutually beneficial relationships.

    As one of the strongest voices on the need for equal partnerships in the value chain, Delman Lee, President and Chief Technology Officer of TAL Apparel Limited joins Eva Kruse for a conversation on what needs to change in the relationship between buyers and manufacturers to accelerate sustainability. This discussion will also go deeper into understanding how to forge better and more mutually rewarding partnerships.

    As her namesake brand Ahluwalia, which is known for exploring vintage and deadstock clothing, Priya Ahluwalia’s understanding of the industry’s circularity challenge drives this segment. Watch her incorporate stunning design elements from her dual Indian-Nigerian heritage and London roots with ground-breaking new labelling tech.

    Clare Farrell is a full-time Activist and Campaigner based in London and one of the Founders of Extinction Rebellion. Leadership, honesty and ancestry of planet Earth are all featured topics here, while a devotion to personal liberty drives this Real Talk through power imbalance and climate collapse.

    Under the headline theme of Redesigning Value, we’ve invited a diverse community of global fashion leaders to share their insight, experience and pioneering perspective. All 62 carefully selected voices from around the world are given the same set of questions for thoughtful responses.

    The Next Gen Voices format, presented by Pandora, gathers a varied collection of thoughts and viewpoints from a selected group of previous Youth Fashion Summit participants. The Youth Fashion Summit is an international sustainability platform for fashion students, founded in 2012 by Global Fashion Agenda.

    Every year, this growing community convenes to generate ideas and demands to the industry, and here within Next Gen Voices, the same spirit remains from a selection of passionate young leaders.

    Take a deep breath and find your center with Nike Master Trainer Branden Collinsworth as he leads the CFS+ community through a guided meditation, crafted to provide a moment of reflection and intention-setting.

  • 4:15 - 5:50 PM CEST

    Global Fashion Agenda and McKinsey & Company launched the Fashion on Climate report, concluding that if the fashion industry continues on its current path, it will miss the 2030 emissions reduction targets by 50%, thus generating twice the volume of carbon emissions required to reach the Paris Agreement.

    The Fashion on Climate report provides the underlying foundation for discussing this topic, and the panel will offer dynamic interaction, demystifying numbers and terminology while encouraging an open, organic exchange between participants.

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    #systemchange #consumption

    The Covid-19 pandemic has underscored that the fashion industry system is broken – with overproduction, excessive discounting and an unsustainable calendar ill-suited to the UN Sustainable Development Goals. How can key players within the system collaborate to re-imagine how the industry can operate within planetary boundaries and be more inclusive and humane?

    Stream here
  • 4:15 – 6:15 PM CEST
    #redesign #equality

    The German EU Presidency has informally expressed a wish for “a smart mix of voluntary and mandatory measures and a smart mix of governmental and entrepreneurial measures” in the harmonisation of due diligence standards in the EU. The European Commission is also drafting a legislative proposal, with a draft report ongoing at the European Parliament level.

    This roundtable aims to better understand these wishes and to provide initial input from the industry to EU institutions.

  • 5:55 – 6:25 PM CEST
    #newmaterials #redesign

    Tap into how the creation of a 100% 3D printed sneaker was conceived and made possible despite limitations posed by the pandemic – through a cross-border collaborative effort from Creative Director Heron Preston (New York), Designer Daniel Bailey (London) and Engineer Cornelius Schmitt (Hamburg).

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    #systemchange #redesign

    How can the fashion sector grow out of growth and transition to a world of LESS? The authors of Earth Logic, Professors Kate Fletcher and Mathilda Tham, talk to three leaders of change: an ecological economist, an entrepreneur and a journalist to get to the crux of LESS, including its economic implications, worker impacts and shifting behaviours.

    Join us in a game-changing exploration of Earth Logic, which examines why less is needed, how it can be done and who can do it.

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    #equality #systemchange

    The COVID-19 Garment Industry Call to Action is a set of shared commitments by actors across the sector to address the crisis created by the pandemic. The commitments define priorities that include speeding access to emergency financing for both workers and employers and establishing stronger health and social protections to contribute to a more resilient industry in the future.

    During this deep dive case study, we will discuss the achievements of the effort to date, as well as the challenges ahead.

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    #equality #systemchange

    COVID-19 has had an immeasurable impact on the fashion industry. With the quick shift to remote engagement, including corporate offices moving to remote work and factory audits taking place offsite – what are the implications for the future of work? How is the resulting explosion of digitalisation driving sustainability improvement across the value chain?

    Join Li & Fung, Fung Group and the International Labour Organization (ILO) to explore the pandemic’s impact on work and hear how Li & Fung is unlocking opportunities for improved sustainability via digitalisation.

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  • 6:30 – 7:00 PM CEST
    #circularity #transparency

    Ahluwalia is known for exploring vintage and dead stock clothing, taking elements from the Creative Director’s dual Indian-Nigeran heritage and London roots. Priya Ahluwalia’s understanding of the industry’s difficulties within circularity drives her challenge on how to enable circular systems.

    This case study unlocks the vision behind her challenge, together with in-depth knowledge around how tech can enable circularity, presented by Michael Colarossi, VP of Innovation, Product Line Management and Sustainability at leading material science and innovation company Avery Dennison.

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    #systemchange #consumption #transparency

    The Higg Index is designed to enable transparency. The Sustainable Apparel Coalition (SAC) and Higg Co have been working with brands and retailers on consumer-facing transparency pilots to understand how consumers react to sustainability performance data on a product level. Consumers report that they are interested in sustainability information on products, but they do not yet use the data to drive their purchasing behaviours.

    This session will discuss the future of Higg transparency and the learnings from testing it, as well as showcasing some examples.

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    #climatechange #equality

    The case study will not only outline Timberland’s 2030 vision but also share insights into how the brand arrived at the bold goals that will drive its agenda for the next decade: from consumer insights and strategic frameworks, to supply chain partnerships and materials innovations and all the challenges faced along the way.

    Through this case study, Timberland hopes to inspire other brands and companies to pursue meaningful sustainability targets and work collectively towards a greener future.

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