Apparel 4.0: A Review of the Apparel Industry’s Adoption of Frontier Technologies

Sheikh Morshed Jahan, Tanveer Ahmed Khan, Asif Asgar, Nazirul Azam Biswas, Kazi Ashif Uz Zaman


The Textile & Apparel (T&A) industry has been recognized for its modest shifts. This review paper, however, has examined the state of the apparel industry’s technology adoption, with special reference to 4IR technologies and fast-evolving market preferences in the post-pandemic era. Based on an extensive literature survey, the study concludes that the fourth industrial revolution (4IR) technologies have started gaining ground and disrupting the global apparel value chain. Likewise, Covid-19 too has brought considerable disruptions, driving organizational changes faster than ever. On one hand, Covid-19 has caused a significant adverse impact on the apparel industry, impacting brands, producers, and workers across the world. On the other hand, it has accelerated the adoption of frontier technologies by the industry. The Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) is transforming the apparel sector in design, development, production, supply chain, and marketing value segments. Besides process automation, frontier 4IR technologies such as 3D knitting and printing, robotics and intelligent manufacturing, virtual and augmented reality, artificial intelligence, business analytics, IoT, etc., have started shaping the future of the T&A industry. The paper should be of interest to both market actors (e.g., producers and marketers) and market facilitators (e.g., policymakers and academia).

Keywords:Textile & Apparel (T&A) industry, Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR), COVID-19, frontier technologies, fashion cycle, automation, biotechnology, apparel 4.0

DOI: 10.7176/EJBM/14-22-04

Publication date: November 30th 2022


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