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Heriot-Watt University’s MSc in International Fashion Marketing (IFM) was founded with the support and guidance of George Davies, the internationally-renowned fashion designer and businessman behind creations for Next, George at Asda, and Per Una brands. George Davies provides financial sponsorship for the programme and maintains his active involvement with the programme through a regular masterclass.

You can read more about George and his latest work.

Programme design and content

This Masters degree in International Fashion Marketing extends an existing awareness of the marketing process to develop skills and competencies necessary for a marketing career in the international fashion sector. The programme includes eight taught courses and a research based dissertation. The courses include:

  • Contemporary Consumers in Fashion – examines the motivations and perspectives of fashion consumers in different international locations.
  • International Strategic Marketing - identifies choices in marketing strategies for local and international brands, focusing on operating a global business.
  • Marketing Logistics - explains how to gain competitive advantage in the international omni-channel distribution environment.
  • New Product Development – identifies the processes and challenges of developing new fashion products. This course is delivered at the School of Fashion and Textiles in Galashiels by leading experts in garment construction and fabric characteristics and includes an industry visit. 
  • Branding and Communications in Fashion - considers the power of brands and helps students master the key principles of fashion brand management.
  • Research Philosophy and Practice – provides training in data collection and analysis for roles in consumer insight and business consultancy and prepares you for the dissertation.
  • Advances in Digital Marketing - examines digital marketing trends including gamification, brand community management and affiliate marketing.
  • Fashion Buying and Merchandising – taught by specialists from Heriot-Watt’s School of Fashion and Textiles, this course explains the buying and merchandising functions including supplier selection, negotiation and performance evaluation. 

The Master’s dissertation, completed during summer, enables you to deepen your knowledge in a topic of your choice by gathering and analysing data from companies or consumers within an international fashion marketing setting which directly relates to your ambitions. Previous students on MSc International Fashion Marketing have conducted dissertations on topics including:

  • The Rise of New Fashion Influencers - A comparative look at fashion bloggers and celebrities' effect on fashion trends throughout Europe.'
  • Use of Social Media (Instagram) for Sportswear/ Athleisure Brands
  • Responsible Luxury: The Importance of CSR Initiatives in Building Brand Equity in the Luxury Goods
  • The Use of Older Models in International Fashion Campaigns.

Engagement with the fashion retailing sector

Engagement with the global fashion retailing sector is a distinguishing feature of Heriot-Watt’s International Fashion Marketing programme. Each year students are offered a series of industry visits to facilitate direct involvement with the fashion sector. In 2017/18 visits included Holland and Sherry, international fabric merchants and Trend Bible, a trends forecasting consultancy. Students also engaged in projects for the Edinburgh International Fashion Festival and with Knockandoo Woollen Mill, an historic woolmill that creates contemporary designs with traditional Scottish materials. 

This programme offers an annual four-week International Internship opportunity for one outstanding student at the Toronto HQ and New York offices of Array Marketing. Array Marketing has over 35 years’ experience in the retail sector, producing innovative visual merchandising and point-of-purchase displays for leading brands such as L’Oréal, Urban Decay, MAC, Sephora, ULTA, Estee Lauder and Prada. The internship provides experience across key operational areas including project management, digital marketing, merchandising, store fittings, and understanding the luxury consumer. 2016’s successful candidate was offered a permanent role with Array Marketing after presenting innovative business development ideas based on her dissertation research.

Read a reflection from this year's Array Marketing Intern: 'From Edinburgh to New York: A Display of Marketing Expertise on Array Internship'

Read more about Array Marketing on the Array Marketing Website

International Fashion Marketing competencies and skills

Your marketing competencies will be developed through case-study learning, direct interaction with industry and industry-focused assessments. Innovative group-based and individual coursework will challenge you to translate theory into fashion marketing solutions and demonstrate skills in time management, team leadership, information management and verbal, written and digital communications. This year’s IFM students gained experience in:

  • Producing a Vlog to communicate key messages in an authentic way and then evaluate how to repurpose content into a podcast
  • Designing and filming a fashion brand advertisement
  • Developing a buying and merchandising plan
  • Deconstructing garments to understand how they could be redeveloped to different price points.

The sought-after transferrable skills you gain through this programme will position you as an attractive candidate for employers. Previous students have progressed to roles in merchandising, public relations and retailing.

Diverse learning experience: a wealth of business and cultural perspectives

Studying on this programme will enable you to work alongside highly-motivated students from across the world who have chosen to progress their marketing knowledge at Heriot-Watt’s School of Social Sciences. This will develop your first-hand experience of working in international teams and providing you with crucial insights into a diverse range of markets and consumer perspectives, all of which are vital in the global fashion sector. By sharing courses with students from other management disciplines you will also experience working alongside those with different business perspectives, a true-to-life insight into the multi-functional nature of international fashion marketing. We offer a thriving calendar of social events which kicks off in week one with a bespoke induction event. Our campus-based location will help you to balance your academic experiences with a rewarding social life, providing many opportunities to develop an international network of friends and contacts from our friendly, global community.


DThis Programme is accredited by the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) indicating that our teaching and assessment meet the rigorous standards of the CIM in terms of content, scope and learning outcomes.

Visit the International Fashion Marketing - MSc page on the Heriot-Watt University website for more details!






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