Race to the Top’s innovative character

Stakeholder commitment and collaboration, as well as the variety of stakeholders’ roles and activities, contribute to Race to the Top’s innovative character. Its interrelated priorities – streamlining assessments, referencing environmental best practices, improving worker engagement, incentivizing sustainable sourcing, and creating access to capital for improvement activities and sustainably operating factories – were determined by the stakeholders involved in Race to the Top, and result in an innovative plan of action that deals with the problems faced by the industry.

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Social & Environmental Solutions

The social solutions will be piloted and developed to be used in a variety of facilities, in close collaboration with Better Work. By combining productivity/engagement components with dialogue training, improvements on social performance, worker satisfaction, worker retention, and productivity can be achieved.

The environmental solutions will be rolled out in different components, with programs targeting existing mills and laundries with efficiency improvements and the creation of a blueprint for new mills coming into Vietnam to address the challenges of the newly developing mills as a result of rules of origin legislation as a part of trade agreements.


The Race to the Top program aims to catalyze the growth and expansion of a socially just and environmentally sustainable apparel and footwear industry. The program is built around four pillars:

  1. Proving and improving the (economic, societal, reputational) benefits of a sustainable  apparel industry for both the government and the sector
  2. Creating a supportive policy and regulatory environment for sustainable apparel production
  3. Improving the business rationale for manufacturers and mills to invest in sustainable apparel production
  4. Creating cost-efficiencies by coordinated and innovative interventions at country-level