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MAKE-IT – Understanding Collective Awareness Platforms with the Maker Movement

Key words: innovation, sustainability, social change

Project duration: 01.01.2016 - 31.12.2017

black lettering "MAKE-IT". Above it wi-fi symbol. From the point goes a line that underlines a green circle, an orange hexagon, a red square and a blue triangle and extends to above the triangle.

European Union – Horizon 2020

MAKE-IT studies how Collective Awareness Platforms (CAPs) support and stimulate maker communities and the impacts this is having and is likely to have in the future across society.

  • TNO - Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (Netherlands)
  • DTI – Danish Technological Institute (Denmark)ZSI – Zentrum für Soziale Innovation / Centre for Social Innovation Vienna (Austria)
  • TUDO - Technische Universität Dortmund Social Research Centre (Sozialforschungsstelle, sfs) (Germany)
  • IAAC – FabLab Barcelona, The Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia (Spain)
  • FLZ – FabLab Zagreb (Croatia)
  • HLW – Happylab Gmbh Wien (Austria)
  • AHHAA – Science Centra AHHAA (Estonia)
  • CIR – Create it Real ApS (Denmark)

The overall objective of the MAKE-IT project is to understand the role of Collective Awareness Platforms (CAPs) in how the maker movement has grown and operates, particularly in relation to using and creating social innovations and achieving sustainability.

The specific objectives of the MAKE-IT project are to:

  1. Extend CAPs into a new domain: The MAKE-IT project will add the perspective of the collaborative production and consumption of tangible forms of physical objects to the CAPs‘ perspective which hitherto primarily describes the collaborative production of knowledge and other forms of intangible content.
  2. Undertake multidisciplinary research (behavioural studies, social psychology, sociology, management information systems, economics, plus environmental, technological and governance issues) into the role and impact of CAPs approaches on the maker movement.
  3. Undertake innovation action research with the aim to put knowledge back into the maker and CAPs communities.
  4. Contribute to the future development of maker awareness and culture within the context of larger scale technological change and sustainable socio-economic growth by enhancing the understanding of socio-economic changes and challenges and examining the longer term technological underpinnings of trends, challenges and opportunities.

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 the Maker 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 CAPs in:

  1. how maker communities are organised and governed;
  2. what maker participants do and how they behave;
  3. the various ways this impacts on and adds value to society.

In order to maximise 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:

  • Civil society actors (communities, associations, ...)
  • Research, facilitation and consultation actors (research entities or networks, ...)
  • Policy makers in the directly affected fields (education, research, social, technology, ...)
  • Economy actors (social entrepreneurs, funding and support networks, ...)

The project will focus its research on maker communities in Europe through both primary case studies and action research as well as through secondary desk research.

Project leadership:


Location & approach

Exit 13 (Kreuz Dortmund Nord-Ost), direction Derne/Schwerte (B236), 1st exit direction Dortmund-Eving, next traffic lights turn right (Kemminghauser Str.), after 2.7km turn left (Evinger Str./B 54), after 1.1km traffic lights turn left (Deutsche Straße), after 500m on the left is the Evinger Platz.

From the Bundesstraße 1 (extension A40 or A44) to the intersection B1/B236 direction Lünen, 3rd exit direction Dortmund-Eving.

Exit Dortmund Hafen, turn left until the intersection Münsterstraße (B54), direction Eving, after about three kilometers turn into Deutsche Straße.

You can download an enlarged general map here

From Dortmund Airport, it takes just about 20 minutes to get to Dortmund Central Station by AirportExpress and from there to the university by subway (U-Bahn) 41. The stop is "Zeche Minister Stein". A wider range of international flight connections is offered by Düsseldorf Airport, about 60 kilometers away, which can be reached directly by S-Bahn from the university station. From there, you can get directly to Dortmund Central Station.

From Dortmund Central Station, take the U 41 light rail (direction Brambauer / Brechten). The stop is "Zeche Minister Stein". The Minister Stein Center is located on the right in the direction of travel of the streetcar.

You can find an overview map here.