At The Amanqi Edit, we have always believed that sustainability is the future for all industries and we are always happy to champion brands that bring this belief into their ethos. With one of Dubai’s latest platforms, The Sustainable Narrative, finding green alternatives to our usual products, ‘go-to’ brands and projects has been easier than before. Intrigued by the platform’s undeterring dedication to sustainability, we sat down with founder Najia Qazi to discuss her journey.
What inspired you to start the Sustainability Week and how has the journey been this far?
Najia: UAE is transforming the business ecosystems they participate in times of COVID-19. The main goal now is to create Sustainable design businesses that support win-win solutions, that serve people and the planet altogether. Therefore, Sustainable Narrative decided to host The Digital Sustainability Week for the month of September( 20th to 27th Sept 2020) to highlight on the real stories narrated by entrepreneurs, designers focusing on Design and Fashion within the region.
We have so far received an overwhelming response regarding the digital week in terms of creating awareness, showcasing social inclusivity that is diversity and representation. The conscious and environment friendly customers or audience do care about sustainability as their quest for seeking knowledge regarding greenwashing, environmental impact and overconsumption continues by being included in the ongoing conversation within the current design industry.
How important is sustainability today?
Najia: There’s a demand for change, therefore Sustainability is stated as the core foundation of the design or fashion industry. The challenge is that we must pay heed to both our people and our planet. Surveys and studies have shown that ecosystem, habitats, and species are being adversely affected at rates that are unprecedented in human history.
On the other hand UAE is working towards being more eco-friendly by 2050 and has started to invest in clean technologies and sustainable development. As we continue exploring financing green investments, seeking alternative sources of energy, and lowering carbon emissions as solutions, the writing is irrevocably on the wall for anyone with a conscience – the time to act is NOW.
What’s an usual day in your life like?
Najia: I believe that a new mind-set for business, the circular design thinking approach allows one to explore new ways to create sustainable, resilient, long-lasting value– giving the confidence to redesign the world around you.
The primary focus is thinking of fresh ways to tackle the issue of transparency and to communicate, educate in order to invest in the circular design theory mindset by embracing Sustainable alternatives within the design industry.
How has social media impacted your concept?
Najia: It is clear that an opportunity exists and with the pandemic there’s a phenomenal growth of Sustainable business within Dubia, UAE, following the global movement for green solutions owing to the mass media coverage on crucial issues such as impact of usage of plastic on our oceans, climate change etc.
The concept recognizes the importance of the design industry needing to work effectively and efficiently at all scales – for large and small businesses, for organizations and individuals. Transitioning to a circular design theory does not only amount to adjustments aimed at reducing the negative impacts. Rather, it represents a systemic shift that builds long-term resilience, generates business and economic opportunities, and provides environmental and societal benefits within the current industry.
Where do you see the Sustainable Narrative in 5 years from now?
Najia: At Sustainable Narrative, our aim has been to create awareness by providing design-based solutions to various incubators/startups, design hubs & think tanks as well. The premise has always been the circular design theory. We are trying to incorporate the regenerative business mindset that includes the process of restoration, renewal of the current resources, creating sustainable systems that integrate the needs of society with the integrity of nature. In the near future we hope to bring together a business community and its sustainability driven goals and initiatives under one umbrella, not only in the UAE but also other parts of the world.
Follow The Sustainable Narrative: @sustainable_narrative