Purpose and Values
The Prada Group has been hosting cultural events on sustainability since 2017, with the aim of stimulating a debate on the most significant changes taking place in today’s society. Throughout the series entitled “Shaping a Future”, Prada has collaborated with the Schools of Management of Yale and Politecnico of Milan.
On 1st September 2020, the fourth edition of the “Shaping a Future” series of conferences, entitled “Shaping a Sustainable Multilateralism”, was held at Ca’ Corner della Regina – the Venetian headquarters of the Prada Foundation. The morning of debates was part of a two-day event programme promoted by the newly established Soft Power Club. The event started with the rebirth of the concept of soft power and new forms of collaboration and multilateralism that are proving to be of strategic importance in achieving global objectives such as the protection of the environment and of cultural heritage in a post-Covid world.
The conference stressed the crucial role of the creative industry, which has made it possible to affirm the identity of Italy at an international level. This constitutes a key element in the rebirth of the soft power itself, with the ability to interpret the continuous changes taking place in society.
The third edition of the conference "Shaping a Sustainable Future Society" was held on November 8th 2019 at the Prada USA headquarters in New York, with an audience of 250+ people composed of students, academics, and personalities from the worlds of art, business, and finance. The event explored the meaning of social responsibility within business and society in an attempt to define what this truly means. Leading figures from international businesses, institutions and organisations shared their reflections on the moral obligation of public and private entities to create an environment that promotes freedom, equality and justice.
Speeches by architect Sir David Adjaye OBE and Paralympic athlete Simone Barlaam were coordinated with a roundtable discussion that explored the growing sensitivity to issues such as respect for human rights, cultural identity, and equal opportunity, and more generally the role of companies in contributing to social development. The round table, led by Raffella Cagliano, Professor of the School of Management at the Politecnico di Milano, and Kate Crawford, researcher and expert in Artificial Intelligence, explored the role of digital innovation in redesigning everyday life, along with the risks of the self-serving misuse of digital technologies.
Finally, over the course of the day, the Yale Center for Customer Insights presented a research project developed in collaboration with the Prada Group aimed at investigating the impact of social issues on consumer purchasing choices.
On November 20th 2018, the second conference entitled "Shaping a Sustainable Digital Future" was presented in Milan. On this occasion, the Group explored the interplay between sustainability and digital innovation. Business leaders and representatives of institutions and international organisations debated the overarching theme, offering their insights and experience in trying to analyse how technology contributes to the sustainable development of business and society and, at the same time, reflecting on the pressing risks in terms of sustainability posed by technology’s fast evolution.
During the months preceding the event, both the business school partners of Prada launched a student contest open to an extensive audience of students (mainly graduate students) who were invited to develop insights on the theme of the conference.
The first Conference, entitled “Shaping a Creative Future”, was held in Milan on March 20th and 21st, 2017 with an audience of 300+ students, professors, professionals, entrepreneurs and journalists, focusing on the analysis of new possible connections between creativity, sustainability and innovation.
The conversation focused on four topics: “Brand heritage and market value”, “Design for sustainability through innovation and tradition”, “Sustainability and value creation”, and “Driving creative excellence”, which examined leadership as an inspiring element for creativity and innovation.
The conference started with a dynamic work session, resumed in a discussion the following day, in which representatives of business and associations met with the professors and students of the two Universities to develop a critical perspective on sustainability and innovation.