Over the past ten years, the Internet has revolutionized and democratized communications to a certain point. These powerful tools provided by ICT software and hardware are completely changing the way we make tangible and intangible goods. Nowadays, virtually everybody with Internet access can create digital content composed of virtual bits and make it available to everyone else instantly, no matter who they are or where they live.
Now, the same thing is happening to manufacturing as the access to tools like 3D printers and laser cutters is increasing. As a result, these intangible goods or virtual bits which can be shared globally, can be turned to physical objects or atoms which manifest themselves locally. This is making the interface between the virtual world and the physical world blur if not disappear. As a shorthand term, this transformation from bits to atoms is being called the Maker movement.
In order to maximize the impact of MAKE-IT, the project will address a model of multi-stakeholder collaboration based on four types of actors. These are the four types who are crucial to the success of the social innovative and collaborative processes they are involved in
(social entrepreneurs, funding and support networks, etc.)
WHAT IS MAKE-IT ABOUT?
The overall objective of the MAKE-IT project is to understand the role of Collective Awareness Platforms (CAPs) in enabling the growth and governance of the Maker movement, particularly in relation to using and creating social innovations and achieving sustainability. The results of this research will help to understand the uses and impacts of CAPs in different contexts, as well as of theMaker movement itself.
To understand how the role and impact of CAPs approaches the Maker movement, MAKE-IT will undertake multidisciplinary research in different fields including: behavioural studies, social psychology, sociology, management information systems, economics, environmental science, technological impact and governance issues. MAKE-IT will focus the research specifically on the role of CAPsin:
how maker communities are organised and governed;
what maker participants do and how they behave;
the various ways this impacts on and adds value to society.