A Matter of Care in the Ghanaian Fashion Industry: An Exploratory Study of Female Entrepreneurs in the Ghanaian Fashion Industry

Graziana Iacobellis & Louise Winther

Studenteropgave: Kandidatafhandlinger

Abstract

Studies of creative industries typically point to precarious work conditions with creative workers being characterised as passionate although self-exploitive as they engage in highly individualized work for self-interest. More recent research has found that creative industries are embedded in relationships of care, with creative workers practising care towards others, although it remains underexplored. In Africa, the creative industries and entrepreneurship is booming with narratives of ‘Africa on the rise’ emerging, and with research on creative industries exploring economic growth and sustainable development. In this thesis we aim to explore the creative industries through an exploratory case study of the Ghanaian fashion industry and its female entrepreneurs to contribute to the scant literature on creative industries in Africa. Simultaneously we seek to critically investigate ethics of care and care theory in creative work in a new, unexplored, context. By drawing on theory of care, female entrepreneurship and creative industries and applying the theoretical framework of the ‘Concentric Circles of Care Relations’ (Lynch, 2007), we argue that female Ghanaian fashion designers practice other-centred care through their creative work. Indeed, our findings indicate care towards intimate relationships with high levels of dependency; relationships of mutual dependencies between designers and employees; attentive customer relationships; solidarity and care intent towards the broader community including competitors, female workers and local communities including vulnerable groups. Although findings indicate a great care intention towards others, the Ghanaian female designers do have care priorities and limits for care. Our findings are based on eight semi-structured interviews undertaken in Accra, Ghana in May 2022 as part of the collaborative research project, ‘Advancing Creative Industries for Development in Ghana’ (ACIG).

UddannelserCand.merc.Business, Language and Culture - Diversity and Change Management, (Kandidatuddannelse) Afsluttende afhandling
SprogEngelsk
Udgivelsesdato2022
Antal sider114
VejledereThilde Langevang