The recent display of sensitive supply chain information by some fashion brands is a stark contrast to how the fashion industry operated until a few years ago, an amalgamation of an opaque supply chain, unknown material usage, animal cruelty, and unfair treatment of workers. Fashion brands are becoming more transparent, providing details on their suppliers, the costing techniques applied and the effects of their products on the environment. Transparency is evolving as a concept and business practice in the fashion industry, and it is crucial to reflect upon the factors that have influenced this paradigm shift.
The purpose of this thesis study was to develop the framework of an index to measure the ethical transparency of brands, including but not limited to the disclosure of social and environmental policies, pricing practices and performances through the investigation of critical issues associated with the garment manufacturing industry. The resultant model, the Ethical Transparency Fashion (EFTF) Index should be used to categorize brands into various levels, and ultimately be adopted by fashion brands to market themselves to ethical customers.
The ETF index has been designed to be responsive to industry changes and new information available over time. By setting rigid parameters across the domains of human rights, animal welfare, and environmental protection, the ETF Index analyzes the integrity of fashion brands to fulfill their social, ethical and sustainable promises. The implementation and promotion of the Ethical Transparency Fashion Index will act as a catalyst in the quest to achieve ethical, social and environmental transparency.