The final evaluation of the 41 finalist projects for the first round of the European WORTH Partnership Project were completed during the “WORTH Weekend” event held at the headquarters of the European Design Institute IED Master in Madrid last 3rd and 4th of February.  

During its first call, the program received 111 innovative proposals involving more than 230 participants from 24 European countries. In its first evaluation phase, 41 finalist projects were selected and invited to the WORTH Weekend to present and defend their proposals before the expert panel and mentors. The event was attended by almost a hundred participants, representatives of the European Commission as well as the consortium responsible for the implementation of the project, led by AITEX.  

The first day of the event saw the finalists present their idea in a pitch presentation format, which consisted of presenting the background and expertise of the members of the partnership in 2 minutes, as well as showing a video to explain the idea of the project. The projects presented were from the sectors of industry described in the program, mostly in the textile-fashion sectors.  

In the afternoon, the panellists were the protagonists through a discussion (round table) in which topics of interest for the fashion sector were discussed. The topics for discussion included its impact on communities, culture, sustainable trends and the challenges facing the creative industry, in addition to sharing their own experiences over many years that have helped them become leading players in their areas of expertise.

The second day of the WORTH Weekend consisted of bilateral meetings of 30 minutes between each partnership and experts of the jury and mentors to understand more deeply the scope of the proposed idea and its plan of execution. The finalists received feedback and guidance from the experts on how the project should be focused for a successful outcome.  

Parallel conferences were also held on relevant topics for the participants: “Sustainability in the textile sector” (by Simona Moldovan of AITEX), “Intellectual Property Rights” (by Annamaria Stein of legal firm AA Franzosi, Italia), “Design Thinking” (by Christina Skoubridou of the KEPA Cultural Design Centre of Grecia) and “Fashion as an Interface in the Digital Dimension” by the well-known designer FashTech Jasna Rokegem from Belgium.

The WORTH Weekend proved to be an enriching experience for each of the finalists. The participants had the opportunity to establish connections, exchange knowledge and learn from professionals from all over Europe, including designers, manufacturers and technology developers. They also had the opportunity to receive advice from the jury experts and mentors.

The project evaluation process took into account criteria such as: relevance of the project, innovation, quality and potential of the participants, credentials and portfolio and positioning in the market among other aspects, to generate significant impact on the industry through design positioning. 

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