Social sustainability, the social dimension of sustainable development goals (SDGs), is getting increasing attention in recent years. The issues of social sustainability are very challenging in the textile and clothing supply chain especially in emerging economies. This article proposes a modified fuzzy interpretive structural modelling (fuzzy ISM) for analysing the contextual relationships among the barriers of social sustainability. Twenty barriers are shortlisted based on review of literature and experts' opinion. The contextual relationships among the barriers are captured in form of linguistic ratings given by the experts. Using the modified fuzzy ISM method, an eight-level hierarchical model is developed. The lack of consumer awareness is found to be the most important driving barrier. The other important driving barriers are lack of strict implementation of government laws and regulation, and lack of financial support from the Government and trade bodies. This study shows that the issues of social sustainability in the textile and clothing supply chain can be addressed by increasing consumer awareness, coercive pressure from the regulatory bodies, and financial aids and incentives to supply chain partners. This study contributes to the methodology by developing an improved interpretive model of decision making. The hierarchical and contextual relationships among the social sustainability barriers have been deciphered. The study also utilises organisational change management theory to address the barriers of adoption of social sustainability. Outcome of this research will be useful to frame strategies to implement social sustainability in textile and clothing supply chain.
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