Saturday, 5 December 2009


I would like to take this opportunity to say Thank You to everyone from my class and especially to Noemi and Alyas for their support, encouragement, contribution and understanding throughout the entire course. I very much enjoyed working with all of you and thank you again for providing me with the knowledge I gained from each and every lecture. As you may know this is my last semester, and may be I sound very emotional but I want to say that I am going to miss Regents, Teacher, Friends and all the People I know from our university who made my studying period very interesting and exciting. I will try to do my best and meet your expectations.

Process Blog

Process blog was something different for me because I have never done anything like that. I think it is a very good idea to transform process handbook into process diary and I think it is also sustainable and less paper consuming. It was easy for me to be in track as I am always working from my laptop from all the assignments and I have the access to the internet almost all the time. Another advantage of the blog is that you can not only put and share different pictures but the vedios as well. I also think that it is less time consuming in a sense that there is no need to rewrite your notes, search for pictures from the magazines, then cut then and stick to the diary. However I found it different in the way to manage the blog and recording all the information because when we had process handbook, I used to have it on my table and everytime I looked there it reminded me that I have to record something or do some research, whereas with the blog it is different, until you log in and open the website, the is not so much to remind you that there are still things to be done, and also not everyone get access to the blog or the internet in the daily basis. Another point I would like to add is that may be blog is less creative, because you can not cusromise it very much, may be only backgroung and pictures. There is less freedom for creativeness comparing to process handbook, however still there are ways to make it different and eye catching.

DSM 6410: How was it?

DSM 6410 was one of the most difficult subjects of the entire degree, very time concuming and lots of work to do. The module covered three different areas such as design, sustainability and innovation, therefore in the beginning of the course it was not really easy to undestand fully the subject. However I found it verry different and I am sure that the knowledge I gained from the lectures will be very helpful in my future career. This module helped me to improve my teamwork, organising and management skills. In addition to that, the projects we ran through helped me to understand the subject and being able to apply the theory to practice. Even though it was difficult and requred a lot on engagement it was very useful. I was also writingmy final dissertation this semester and other 2 modules, so I had to manage my time wisely and make sure im on track and I complete all the work on time.

THE Event

The event went very well. It was very well organised and the entire group made a huge effort to make it all happen. Everyone was motivated, we had no disagreements or even arguments, and you can see it from smiling faces in the picture :D That means we worked not as a team, but as a big happy family. It was amazing how the group of 13 people made the event exciting and memorable. The room layout was well designed, we had to screens that was very helpful in order to prepare each presentations. We all had same t-shirts and this looked very professional and eye catching. (and warm as well). All the decorations were designed very well and I have helped the grout to decorate the room in a nice and proper way. The only difficulty for me was that I just slept few ours, because I wanted to make sure that my work is properly done and the presentation is revised, and I also had to come to uni at 7:30am on monday to meet with Joyce and put the program, attachment and the ribbons together. Each and every presentation was well done and it was very interesting to listen to different knowledge of sustainability in various countries. I know that everyone was stressed before the presentation but at the end every group member made it in very professional way. Still some presentations went over the time limit, though we managed to finish everything on time. We did not have many guests and one guest speaker could not make it to come for the event due to personal reasons. However I had the highest number of guests, 4 people. 3- from colledge and one friend of mine from UCL. I don't even know how I was able to encourage them to come on Monday morning, as they had no classes and reasons to come to college. I was surprised that the all came to the event and showed their support and respect. They All enjoyed the event + they all received t-shirts that made them even more satisfied. The rest of the day we were talking about sustainability with my friends as they all were interested in this topic. I admit that this project was like no other project I had in this degree, and YES it was difficult and time consuming, however I made an effort to do it well as it is my last semester. I believe that I managed my main role/task of designing the program and making sure the timing and the titles are right very well and I had no problems doing that. Now I can proudly say that I was a part of the group who organised and ran an event on such an important topic of today's world.

Reflections on the report and the presentation

I found project B quite difficult, firstly the topic of it - barriers to sustainability innovation, is relatively new and there is a lack of information on this subject. Secondly, the project consisted from 3 parts: presentation, event and the report.
Report: The report was 2000 words, first it was very difficult to find information on sustainability in Kazakhstan, and the main reason fot that is not that the topic sustainability is very new back, but because Kazakhstan uses web less and does not publish a lot of information online. I managed to find at least some information on fashion industry and programs undertaked by the firms toward sustainable world. However books on sustainability, design and innovation where helpful in order to find and identify barriers and apply them to my case. Then I tried to find out the reasons for these barriers, and found few of them, because I thought it is important to see why the barrier occur in order to see opportunities. When I only started writing the report, I was a bit worried that I will not cover 2000 words because of limited sources, however towards the end I had reasonable number of sources and even had to cut some words to fit to the limits.
Presentation: After I have completed my report, I started designing my slides and putting all the key information. I only had 6 slides including title page because we had to fit in 5 minutes to present. I did not want to put a lot of word on my slides to make it simple. "Less is more". I made notes for myself for the presentation in order to rehears and to use them for the presentation if im going to forget everything on the day of presentatiom. I always do notes, BUT at the end I never use then, however I feel more secure to have them in front of me, even if I never look at them. In my opinion, the presentation went very well and I covered all the main points, and I don't think I missed anything. On my report I identified 2 main barriers, but for the presentation I have used only one barrier, to make it more clear. I did the presentation in exactly 5 minutes. I was a bit nervous, because there were people outside of the college and I felt less confident, but I think that no one noticed my nervousness. Overall I liked my presentation, I think it was streight forward and easy to understand what I was saying.

10 steps to become Green!

  1. Recycle as much as u can
  2. Switch off the lights when you are done using house amenities
  3. Take shower instead of the bath
  4. Use public transport or bicycles, better for your body shape and mind
  5. Bag it! use ure own recycable bag to shop and reduce number of plastic bags
  6. Shop at your local farmer place
  7. Use eco-friendly packaging
  8. Buy green and sustainable products
  9. Save on paper! Don't print too much and reuse paper
  10. Travel by train not plane

Notes for the presentation..


  • I am going to talk about fashion industry in Kazakhstan and identify possible barriers to sustainability innovation
  • My topic is Fashion can't say no to sustainability in Kazakhstan
  • I chose to do Fashion industry in Kazakhstan in order to research and understan the issue around the notion of sustainability in Kazakhstan
  • One of the biggest challenge for any organisation's competitiveness is to become sustainable
  • However barriers and resistance to sustainability innovation still exist due to various reasons.

Company Background:

  • Fashin industry
  • Symbat

Barriers to Sustainability:

  • By looking at Fashion industry in Kazakhstan number of barriers remain for businesses ti implement sustainable practices.
  • Rossel and Fur identified 6 main barriers to sustainability
  • List the barriers
  • 2 main barriers:
  • Mindset barrier is significant in case of Kazalhstani fashion industry and symbat fashion house in particular.
  • Even if people are willing to make more sustainable choices, they still tend to act according to their habits.
  • Traditional mindset makes it even more difficult to implement sustainable practises as one of the main part of businesses development
  • The main reason for that is because Kazakhstan used to be communist republic when the country was a part of the Soviet Union untill 1991.
  • Even though after gaining independance country becan to change ist strategy, the communist mindset remained, and this is a huge obsticle.
  • People in Kazakhstan believe that they are alone in their concern and small changes won't make any difference.


  • The word sustainability is still not used in broad terms in Kazakhstan.
  • Therefore the main challenge is to change the traditional mindset and convince people that little changes can make a huge difference and can be seen as a huge opportunity.
  • It is also vital to increase awareness about the notion of sustanability innovation to make the change towards sustainable world possible.

Layout of the presentation

This layout was used for all our presentations. We had to choose one from few backgrounds and communicated via e-mail in order to decide which one is going to be used for finally. This one was the most popular one and everyone agreed to have it. Although not everyone received the final background that was selected on time so Jean had to forward them again. The background was in new version of powerpoint, therefore I had few problems in order to make it work on my laptop and spend some time fighting with technology. At the end I have sorted everything out and eventually was able to put my slides together.

What Is Sustainability?

What is sustainability? <--- this question is what one will hear in return when he/she will try to expand on this topic. Especially in Kazakhstan, where sustainbility is quite new topic and not everyone is aware about the issue and importantness of it. Therefore I believe that it is vital to increase awareness on this subject and force people to think about the environment before it is too late.

Stand out from the crowd

When writing my report and identifying main barriers I found 2 barriers related to fashion industry in Kazakhstan. When I was researching for the mindset barrier I went online to find some appropriate visuals. I found this picture very interesting and it does really 'say' something. In terms of mindset barrier, where I was talking about people in Kazakhstan, I was explaining the way people behave and stick to their habbits. They are afraid to stand out from the crowd and share their view with others, they believe that they are alone in their concern and do not belive that little changes made by them can make a difference. I think that this picture will incourage individuals to think differently and not be afraid of standing out from the crowd and make change.

Identified barriers to sustainability innovation in Kazakhstan

There are 2 main barriers identified within Kazakhstani Fashion industry are: mindset and ‘sustainability’ as a term.
- Mindset barrier is significant in case of Kazakhstani fashion industry as lack of mindfulness is the reason why people refuse to help the environment and act towards sustainability. Even if the population and people from industry are willing to make more sustainable choices, they still tend to make them according to their habits.
- Traditional mindset makes it even more difficult to become more sustainable and implement sustainability as the main part of their businesses. The main reason for that is because Kazakhstan used to be a communist republic when the country was a part of the Soviet Union until 1991. Even though after gaining independence, the communist mindset remained. In addition to that, people think that one individual’s act will not make a huge difference, as they believe that they are alone in their concern.
- The main challenge here is to change the mindset and try to convince people that little change can make a difference and that being ‘green’ and acting responsibly towards society and the environment is actually ‘cool’.
- the term ‘sustainability’ itself can be considered as another barrier facing not only fashion industry in Kazakhstan but “Symbat” fashion academy as well. Sustainability means different thing to different people and can also be measured differently. Misunderstanding the word still remains an issue, because if it is not clear to the public what sustainability means, no actions can be implemented.
- While conducting the research it was difficult to come across with information on sustainable development in Kazakhstani fashion industry. However it was noticeable that the industry is actively participating in number of charitable events and ‘Symbat’ fashion academy is not an exception.
- The word sustainability is still not used in broad terms in Kazakhstan. People tend to use words such as ‘green’ and ‘environmentally friendly’ rather than using the main term sustainability. Therefore the key meaning of the definition can be lost and will stop organisations and government to implement sustainability as one of the main part of country’s development.

Role of the design

I believe that design can be seen as an effective tool to manage change successfully, and change toward sustainability innovation is not an exception. Levels of awareness about sustainability in relation to fashion industry are very low. It is not easy to access information, resources and appropriate training. Therefore it is important to address the barriers using design, inspiration and raising the awareness about sustainability in relation to fashion industry.

RESEARCH on sustainability innovation

- "sustainability is about meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs". (Bettina Von Stamm 2008:281) It goes beyond environmental concerns or developing products that use less energy and can be easily recycled. It is about developing them in a way that will not deprive future generations. (Bettina Von Stamm 2008:281)

- Sustainability has entered the scene of a broader idea of performance for the economy, individuals, and organisations. (Soderbaum 2008:1)

- In terms of design, sustainability takes holistic approach and includes issues such as reducing, recycling, refusing at all levels, applying energy efficiency, using materials wisely and making a complete assessment of site conditions. (Borja de Mozota 2003:31)

- According to Porter and Van der Linde (1995) properly designed environmental standards can enhance innovations that can lower the total cost of a product or improve its value. Such innovations allow companies to use a range of inputs more productively, therefore balancing the cost of improving environmental impact. (Bruce and Bessant 2002:256)

- Sustainability and innovation does not come along, they appear through a change. However change is often difficult to implement because of the heritage of resources and organisational culture. (Johnson et al 2008:6)

- Mintzberg et al (1998) argue that any change, including a change towards sustainability can be ignored, resisted, responded to and created. (Bessant 2003:48) It is not easy to bring change in so that it will receive the acceptance of those affected. (p. 48)

- According to Harding (2008) sustainability is increasing interest in a new type of activity. However, traditional views of sustainable fashion focus more on choice and origin of materials. A more complete, creative and innovative view of sustainable fashion embraces both these materials-based or technical innovations and social change. It is only in innovating to develop different solutions that the industry will start to experience more sustainable change. It will only succeed if consumers, producers, retailers, designers, community groups and international corporations connect together and jointly recognize their influence in promoting change. (Innovations Report, 2008)

SYMBAT Fashion Academy Kazakhstan

The Kazakhstani fashion started in 1947 from sewing laboratory which is now known as “Symbat” Fashion Academy. Twice a year the Theatre of fashion presents brand new collections Haute Couture to audience and prêt-â-porter on international fashion weeks. More than 150,000 exclusive pieces have been presented over 60 years of company’s existence. Since 1972, “Symbat” participated in about 40 festivals, competitions and presented Kazakhstani fashion abroad during fashion weeks in Dubai, Moscow, Washington and Siberia. Today “Symbat” Fashion Academy is a distinctive Holding, which apparently includes VIP- Fashion Salons, Clothing – knitwear, shoe manufactures, Fashion Theatre, Trade complex, Educational Institution(Symbat, 2009)

The President of Fashion Academy “Symbat” – Assanova Sabyrkul is a candidate of economic sciences, doctor of engineering sciences, and corresponding member of Engineer of Kazakhstan. She is an author of a number of books on national clothes, costume history and terminology dictionary. (Fashion week in Moscow, 2009) All these years “Symbat” adhered to the main principal of its creative activity with care kept up the traditions of national dresses, embodied them harmonically in modern fashion and formed a new fashionable image of Kazakhstan. (Vendenty, 2009)
I have decided to look at “Symbat” in order to identify possible barriers towards sustainability innovation and find opportunities because I am interested in fashion industy and I am conserned about the sustainability issue back home.


Today, people are more and more concerned about the global environment and willing to see the importance of sustainable issues. However, the resistance to become sustainable still exists due to various reasons. Mostly it is because sustainability is more about environment and nature rather than profit and turnover. People tend to be lazy and do not want to put any effort to become environmentally friendly and pay attention to environmental and ethical issues. In developing countries, people tend to think more about the growth of the economy especially during financial crisis, rather than becoming more environmentally friendly. Kazakhstan is not an exception. People and businesses over there less conserned with environment, and the issue os sustainability is not well spread and popular as yet. However there is evidence that the government and especially the Department of the environmental protection.

Final Draft of The Program

This is the final version of our program. I found it very inderesting to design it, although it was not hard to do it. However I had to change all the titles of each student as we decided to rewrite the titles so they sound properly. At the workshop Noemi and Alyas made further suggestions and slightly changed the timings and the order of the presentations as well. I had the overall design of the program, so it was not hard to make all these changes.