Toronto Metropolitan University
Puistonen, Caroline MRP.pdf (876.18 kB)

Canadian Sustainable Fashion Micro And Small Enterprises: Navigating The Sustainable Development Goals Through Online Marketing

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posted on 2023-06-20, 21:21 authored by Caroline Puistonen

Sustainability within the fashion industry is a complex topic. With increasing consumer concern about the social, economic, and environmental impacts of the products they purchase, the industry must take action to transform the existing fashion system. The 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were introduced by the United Nations in 2015, who have identified both the fashion industry and micro and small enterprises as key players in fulfilling the goals. This research examines 40 micro and small Canadian sustainable fashion businesses through observation of their Instagram content and websites, and semi-structured interviews. Through a thematic analysis, the data was studied to determine which SDGs these businesses align with, and the best practices for them to incorporate the goals. Results reveal that the SDGs are a strong tool for relaying a business’ sustainability initiatives to their consumers, and that all of the businesses studied align with at least two of the goals. 

Keywords: MSEs, sustainable development, SDGs, Global Goals, marketing, sustainable fashion marketing, branding, Canadian fashion, Canadian small business, small businesses, transparency, entrepreneurship, decade of delivery 





  • Master of Arts


  • Fashion

Granting Institution

Ryerson University

LAC Thesis Type

  • MRP

Thesis Advisor

Dr. Anika Kozlowski