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Building Inclusive Makerspaces


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Presented at Electromagnetic Field 2018.

Published in: Technology
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Building Inclusive Makerspaces

  1. 1. @freakatoms Building Inclusive Makerspaces Em O’Sullivan Electromagnetic Field, Eastnor, England 2 September 2018
  2. 2. @freakatoms Why are inclusive makerspaces important? ● Technical literacy ● Lack of opportunities elsewhere ● Real-world benefits ● Makerspaces are awesome!
  3. 3. @freakatoms We should be making our makerspaces as inclusive as possible :D
  4. 4. @freakatoms Workshop overview ● Presentation: ● Who do we need to include in our makerspaces? ● Examples of inclusive practices ● Group discussion: ● What successes or challenges have you experienced in your own makerspace?
  5. 5. @freakatoms After the workshop... ● Advice will be collated and published as a zine ● This session is being recorded, please state if you do not want your comments to be recorded! ● Join the Google Group :)
  6. 6. @freakatoms Who do we need to include? ● People with mobility issues ● Older people ● Parents and care-givers ● Women ● BAME (Black & Minority Ethnic) people / People of colour ● People with low incomes ● Technically inexperienced people
  7. 7. @freakatoms A few examples of inclusive practices
  8. 8. @freakatoms Think about physical access Accessible toilet @ Machines Room, London
  9. 9. @freakatoms Tidy up Cleaning instructions @ Metalab, Vienna
  10. 10. @freakatoms Make it colourful! Nikola Tesla and Margaret Hamilton mural @ Noisebridge, San Francisco
  11. 11. @freakatoms Have a strong Code of Conduct Framed anti-harassment policy and CoC @ Double Union, San Francisco
  12. 12. @freakatoms Organise diverse events Pottery and slime making @ Institute of Making, London. Photos by IoM
  13. 13. @freakatoms Make it affordable Free digital design workshop @ The Factory, Bristol
  14. 14. @freakatoms Work with your local community Upcycling project @ Remakery, London
  15. 15. @freakatoms Acknowledge the problem!
  16. 16. @freakatoms Ongoing challenges ● How can we afford to be inclusive? ● Higher membership fees? ● Fund-raising? ● External funding or sponsorship? ● 24/7 access, or staffed opening hours? ● Open or closed membership?
  17. 17. @freakatoms Discussion Q. What successes or challenges have you experienced in your own makerspace with inclusive engagement? Q. What are your thoughts on makerspaces’ ongoing challenges around cost, staffing, and access?