Fashioning the Future: Entrepreneuring in Africa’s Emerging Fashion Industry

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A vibrant fashion scene is emerging in Africa, spearheaded by a new generation of young fashion entrepreneurs. Drawing on a multi-sited study of Ghanaian, Ugandan and Zambian female designers, this article examines the emerging fashion industry as a site for entrepreneuring where people’s aspirations to bring about personal, cultural and socio-economic development converge. The paper reveals how fashion designers envision their endeavours as pathways for pursuing their passion, for changing the associations ascribed to ‘Africanness’, and for revitalising failing clothing industries in Africa. The paper proposes that while the emerging character of the industry creates uncertainty and many obstacles for running viable businesses, fashion designers remain enthused by narratives about the industry’s future prospects.
Original languageEnglish
JournalThe European Journal of Development Research
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)893-910
Number of pages18
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2017

Bibliographical note

Published online: 19. December 2016


  • Entrepreneurship
  • Creative industries
  • Fashion design
  • Youth
  • Women

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