Burak Cakmak has been managing the Parsons School of Fashion degree programs as the Dean since 2015. With his expertise in the field of sustainable design, he is focused on guiding the academic programs at Parsons School of Design into a new era, where an emphasis on socially conscious and transformational design formulates the educational approach and training of the next generation of creators. At Parsons, he led the implementation of a new innovative curriculum for fashion design undergraduate degree, aimed at rethinking the role of designer in industry and society. This evolution includes introduction of new pathways including Collection, Fashion Product, Materiality and Fashion Systems. In the past two decades, Cakmak has facilitated successful collaborations with a wide range of stakeholders, including suppliers, retailers, NGOs, governments, and the media in order to drive positive, ethical industry change.
Prior to that, Cakmak spearheaded innovation-driven sustainability strategies as the first Director of Corporate Sustainability for Kering’s luxury brands, including Gucci, Bottega Veneta, Yves Saint Laurent, Alexander McQueen, Sergio Rossi, Balenciaga, Stella McCartney, and Boucheron. His career in the fashion industry began at Gap Inc., where he served as the Senior Manager of Social Responsibility in their San Francisco and London offices for 8 years. He has been invited to speak at a number of prominent, globally recognized conferences—including the Copenhagen Fashion Summit, WebSummit and Fashion Asia Hong Kong. In addition, he had to opportunity to sit on a number of esteemed juries in NY and Europe, including the CFDA + Lexus Fashion* Initiative, and Open Style Lab.