The present paper explores the relationship between makerspaces, Fab Labs and other maker laboratories, designers and companies to verify if these subjects are developing collaborative processes and producing a new systemic innovation model in terms of circular economy. The pioneering stage of the Makers Movement, fostered by technoevangelists like Chris Anderson and Dale Dougherty (Ander son 2012; Hatch, 2014; Dougherty 2015), is almost over. For more than a decade, the impressive growth of maker labs (maker spaces and Fab Labs) has created a hype about their effective role as new production places distinguished by open and peertopeer practices. These spaces have multipurpose technologies and multidisciplinary communities (professionals and amateurs) potentially able to materialise almost anything (Gershenfeld, 2005). But today, “anything” means overall materialise experimental prototypes, unique pieces, microcollection and components that complete products made by other subjects. Economic and technological limits of many maker laboratories (such as basic technologies not easily upgradable be cause they are undercapitalised) combined with aesthetic, functional and material aspects of artefacts made by makers are still far from being appreciated by the market. In parallel, an increasing number of unemployed or with low wages designers and creative professionals need to transform themselves into selfemployees or selfentrepreneurs and are then claiming easier access to the means of pro duction. Finally, SMEs and craftsmen need to digitally transform their products and production processes to intercept a new generation of customers that are evolving into communitymarket and user innovators (Von Hippel, 2005 and 2016). For these reasons, it can be interesting to investigate if and how these subjects can strategically work together to exceed their limits and develop collaborative production models related to circular economy. Starting from this assumption, the first part of the paper explores the latest evolution of maker labs, designers and manufacturing companies. A stateoftheart based on literature review identifies general issues, critical aspects and opportunities about collaborative processes developed by these subjects. The emerging research questions generated a subsequent fieldwork study. The second part shows the results of a study conducted in 2017 on 25 maker labs located in countries characterised by a high density of these spaces and a consistent presence of designers and manufacturing companies. Sections 1 and 2 of the study describes the maker labs involved analysing their system of relationship with designers and companies. Third and fourth sections analyse the collaborations between maker labs and designers and between maker labs and companies. The last section analyses the projects developed by maker labs involving communities of designers and companies. The whole study aims to reveal if these collaborations can generate sustainable productservices materialised thanks to open and distributed pro duction models. The third and final part analyses the results of the study to define bottlenecks and best practices that inhibit or enable innovation models based on collaboration between makers, designers and companies. The conclusions put these guidelines in the Fourth Industrial Revolution scenario.
|Titolo:||Exploring collaborative processes between maker laboratories, designers and companies moving from 3rd to 4th industrial revolution.|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2018|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||04.1 Contributo in Atti di convegno|
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