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Oct 28, 2022

At TedxFiesole, a renewed humanism on stage

On September 17, I had the incredible opportunity to attend TEDxFiesole. TEDx is an open-source community of independently organised events that inspire innovation, thought leadership and visionary insights. For their first-ever event in Fiesole, one of the oldest Etruscan cities in Tuscany, one of the invited speakers was Sennait Ghebreab, Istituto Marangoni London’s Programme Leader for BA Business, BA Buying, and BA Communication courses. So, in a group of four Istituto Marangoni students, I had the opportunity to be part of something extraordinary together with Giulia Cosso, Camilla Spadaccini and Avishag Eden. 

Istituto Marangoni students had the opportunity to attend TedxFiesole

Istituto Marangoni London students had the opportunity to attend the first edition of TedxFiesole

At a time of great turmoil in human history, the theme of TEDxFiesole was “Renewed Humanism.” The event’s mission was to look at the future as a field of possibilities in sustainability, clean energy, social entrepreneurship, climate and sustainable finance, new technologies and mindsets. TEDxFiesole was the stage for discussing how we can realise our future’s potential by putting people at the centre of concern in all these areas. 

Minds and souls determined to play their part in designing a new world, the speakers gathered to examine potential solutions with an attitude of renewed humanism, aware of our need to live in solidarity with one another and in harmony with our planet’s nature.

“Humanism, born roughly half a millennia ago, refers to a set of social, artistic, and philosophical perspectives broadly based upon the egalitarian aims of widespread learning, intellectual freedom, and individual expression,” said TEDxFiesole in an official statement. “The Renewed Humanism investigates and extends those thought processes to the current context of the Anthropocene – a new geophysical epoch where all human, biological and terrestrial systems are defined by deep states of stress and fragility catalysed primarily by human activity.”

Sennait Ghebreab had the opportunity to talk about women's empowerment and gender equality

Istituto Marangoni London’s Programme Leader Sennait Ghebreab highlighted a critical topic — women’s empowerment and gender equality

Viewed through the Fiesole lens, the way forward is via the routes described by of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and UN 2030 Agenda. Thus, the key themes of the speeches were the empowerment of women and disadvantaged populations, the elimination of war and poverty, how to provide universal access to food, water and energy; and the ways to reverse climate change and ecosystem destruction. 

Sennait Ghebreab highlighted a critical topic — women’s empowerment and gender equality. A voice for equal opportunity, diversity, hope, immigration, integration and female resilience, she strongly believes talent deserves to shine regardless of gender, colour or background.

As she mentioned during her speech, quoting an article from the Business of Fashion platform, “Fashion industry seems to be made for women – but run by men.” Her insight was so inspiring as we need more women representation on boards and at the highest levels of this sector. As a fashion student at Istituto Marangoni London, I have met many talented ladies who have inspired me, and I firmly believe in their ability to lead the industry.

Sennait Ghebreab on stage at TedxFiesole

Sennait Ghebreab on stage at TedxFiesole

Sennait Ghebreab’s speech motivated me to take confident and courageous steps towards my dreams and goals in the fashion industry. Moreover, her experience showed us how much power women can have. Starting her career in the London fashion industry with Burberry, Matthew Williamson, Pringle and Joseph, she became an Academic Course Leader at Istituto Marangoni in 2015. Since then, she constantly challenges the fashion industry’s perception among her students by sharing a vision of innovation, digital acceleration, blockchain, sustainability and circular economy. As an Eritrean Italian educator living in London, Sennait received the Talented Italians under 40 award from the Italian Chamber of Commerce and the Italian Embassy in the UK last year.

As Sennait Ghebreab mentioned, “If you can see it, you can be it!” Following her philosophy, I want to become a woman who can embrace the change in gender equality and develop this within the industry by opening new opportunities in the future.

Overall, this experience gave me a new insight into leadership and pushed me to imagine further actions to contribute positively to the fashion industry.



Mariia Arianna Kerdeiicle
BA Business student, 3rd year, London
postgraduate-Master's Degrees · Master's Courses · Master of Arts