Project for more female managers in the textile industry

The textile industry is predominantly female, with 70 percent of the workforce in Europe being women. Despite this, the majority of leadership positions are held by men. Only 25 percent of senior positions in the largest textile companies are occupied by women. The "W4TEX" project aims to provide women with the skills and knowledge needed to become leaders.

This autumn, the project will launch a pilot in six different countries, where twenty women in each country will receive various leadership competencies.

“This is a unique project where we focus on leadership skills, green methods, and lifelong learning,” explains Vijay Kumar, project leader and Associate Professor in Textile Management.

“The project strengthens the university’s efforts on lifelong learning by providing continuous education opportunities and fostering a culture of ongoing professional development,” explains Niina Hernandez, Senior Lecturer and Deputy Dean of Faculty of Textiles, Engineering and Business.

The project has an important migration perspective

Vijay Kumar hopes that women working in the textile industry will be encouraged to participate. However, since the focus is primarily on leadership and not textiles, people outside the industry can also participate.

“We want to empower women and reduce inequality. It is also an important project in terms of migration. We know that many immigrant women have worked in the textile industry and bring valuable experience from large textile companies, as production does not take place in Sweden. We want to utilize this,” he says.

The participating partners come from Ukraine, Greece, Spain, Italy, and Belgium. Each country will provide the education in its native language through a digital learning platform. The project will also include national hackathons and an international ideathon – a dynamic event where ideas and solutions are created.

More female managers – more green decisions

In addition to having more women in management positions in the textile industry, the project has a clear sustainability goal. Sara Harper, a researcher in Textile Management, is also involved in driving the project. She explains:

“Research shows statistics that women in management positions more often make sustainable decisions. So, by teaching the participants about sustainability in the project, we know it will influence their decision-making in a leadership role.”

Now, the hope is that the news of the project will spread in relevant forums so that as many women as possible will have the chance to strengthen their leadership skills.

More information

Registration for those who want to participate in the project opens in July. Stay updated via the project page