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Transparency in Sustainability Communication: Developing and Testing a new Model to assess Consumer-Facing Sustainability Transparency Communication of Fashion Brand/Retailer’s Website.
University of Borås, Faculty of Textiles, Engineering and Business.
2017 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Sustainable development
Sustainable Development/Sustainability is used as a subject keyword for the thesis
Abstract [en]

Background. Consumer facing Transparency is a function of communication that has become essential for the fashion business ecosystem and to have the reputations of legitimacy and credibility. As a contemporary subject, it is surrounded with ambiguity and heterogeneity in definitions, different Fashion brands/fashion brands/retailers/Fashion brands/retailers try to have their own definition and approach towards transparency. The communication strategy and disclosure of information therefore varies within these companies. With the increase in ecommerce, corporate Websites are currently the largest medium of sustainability communication. Fashion brands/fashion brands/retailers/Fashion brands/retailers use a combination of visual communication, data, text, reports and design to communicate the sustainability of their supply chain. There is however, a need to be able to measure the level of transparency of such communication against a standardized model. A model that Fashionbrands/fashion brands/retailers/Fashion brands/retailers can adopt to assess the transparency in their communication.

Theory. Consumer facing transparency is an interdisciplinary subject where media, social accountability, information accessibility and quality, openness and effective design interplay to create what can be called “Perceived Transparency”.

Purpose. The purpose of this study is to build and test a model tool to assess transparency in website based communication.

Research Question. What informational, communication design and behavioral attributes constitute the perceived transparency, create legitimacy and credibility?

Method. The study is divided into two parts.

Part I: Conceptual literature review for Model Development

Part II: Testing the model on a real-life Fashion Brand/Retailer website using Applied Discourse Analysis

Contribution: - The model provides a multifocal approach to assess web design and communication strategy to improve transparency in sustainability communication by focusing on factors such Coherence, comprehensibility, navigability, attestation, engagement and correspondence

Limitations: - The model is still a prototype and therefore there is room for improvement. It needs to be tested further on a larger scale involving multiple cases. Although the applied discourse analysis method focuses on empirical evidence, the analysis can be objective depending upon the user.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017.
Keywords [en]
Transparency, Sustainability, Web-based Communication, Discourse analysis
National Category
Economics and Business
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-12834OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hb-12834DiVA, id: diva2:1148443
Subject / course
Textile management
Available from: 2017-10-16 Created: 2017-10-11 Last updated: 2017-10-16Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

MS_TM2017.15.18(6022 kB)276 downloads
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Citation style
  • apa
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Output format
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