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The Future Footwear Foundation is an NGO that aims to revolutionize footwear production and consumption with shoes that are better for you and the environment. We do this blending artisan expertise, cutting-edge technology, and advanced research into human locomotion.

Operating since 2017, we have worked at the intersection of three fields: traditional footwear in Indigenous cultures, the biomechanics of feet and walking, and technologies for 3D measuring and printing.

Five things we want you to know about us :


1/ We build on expertise and skills of traditional shoemakers worldwide. We refer to shoemakers as “cobblers”. 

2/ We use the newest technologies such as 3D-printing where we can, to allow more sustainable shoe production.

3/ We have our roots in research, and we continuously engage in research on the human feet, the way people walk and run, and ways of shoe production.  Future Footwear Foundation was developed by Catherine Willems as part of her doctoral research at  KASK & Conservatorium School of Arts, University College Ghent, Belgium.

4/ What drives us in our work is our firm disagreement with the way shoes are designed and consumed. We are very value driven, and seek a positive impact on the planet, your body, and the lives of people and communities producing your shoes.

5/ We connect artisans, academia and private sectors.

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KASK & Conservatorium Ghent

University of Liverpool

Pupkewitz Foundation

Kalahari Peoples Fund


Rotary Beveren


Core points

Our partners


Future Footwear Foundation is supported by academic, societal, technology, business, and arts grants. 

We also generate our own income through the sales of footwear. All income generated through these activities is used to support ongoing research in the communities we collaborate with. 

Vivobarefoot, LBF

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