Skip to main content

Digital Skills for People with Disabilities in a Learning and Demonstration Experience Laboratory

The Project, “Emscher-Lippe hoch 4”

  • 1601 Accesses

Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNISA,volume 12189)


The project “Emscher-Lippe hoch 4” (EL4) faces the challenges of digitalization in the Emscher-Lippe region in Germany. Within the project one issue is the empowerment of people with disabilities’ participation through low-threshold learning and demonstrating experience laboratories like MakerSpaces. To do so, EL4 installed a so called “Mini-FabLab” in a sheltered workshop in Bottrop. This Mini-FabLab looks at digital technologies from a social and not just from a technological perspective – it thus does not ask for general technological designs, but rather asks for new social practices like the empowerment of people with disabilities. Furthermore with its location in an old covered storage room, the Mini-FabLab illustrates that every place can become a place for inclusion. Through this, the Mini-FabLab enables people with disabilities the opportunity to develop individualized 3D-printed objects and assistance systems for their workplace as well as for their everyday life. As a result, various objects, like for example twist locks, keychains, toothpaste squeeze and blade stoppers were developed to use it as toys but also as assistive tools. Some of these will be presented in the paper, whereby the process of the idea finding (identification of a problem), development and solution of the object will be described in detail.


  • Emscher-Lippe hoch 4
  • Mini-FabLab
  • People with disabilities

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Buying options

USD   29.95
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-49108-6_20
  • Chapter length: 16 pages
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
USD   84.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • ISBN: 978-3-030-49108-6
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
Softcover Book
USD   109.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
Fig. 1.
Fig. 2.
Fig. 3.
Fig. 4.
Fig. 5.
Fig. 6.
Fig. 7.


  1. 1.

    Person-centered interaction and communication for more self-determination in life.

  2. 2.

    The total cost for the renovation and the needed equipment was about 3,000 euro, whereby the technical equipment was covered by the EL4 project. In the current equipment state, the Mini-FabLab costs approx. 6,530 euro.


  1. Kaletka, C., Pelka, B.: Web 2.0 zwischen technischer und sozialer innovation. Anschluss an die medientheoretische Debatte. In: Howaldt, J., Jacobsen, H. (eds.) Soziale Innovation. Auf dem Weg zu einem postindustriellen Innovationsparadigma, pp. 143–161. VS Verlag, Wiesbaden (2010)

    Google Scholar 

  2. Pelka, B.: Digitale Teilhabe: Aufgaben der Verbände und Einrichtungen der Wohlfahrtspflege. In: Kreidenweis, H. (ed.) Digitaler Wandel in der Sozialwirtschaft. Grundlagen - Strategien - Praxis, pp. 57–80. Nomos, Baden-Baden (2018)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  3. EL4 Homepage. Accessed 24 Jan 2020

  4. Hüther, M., Südekum, J., Voigtländer, M.: Die Zukunft der Regionen in Deutschland. IW Medien, Köln (2019)

    Google Scholar 

  5. G.I.B. (eds.): Arbeitsmarktreport NRW 2017. 4.Quartalsbericht Dezember. Bottrop (2018)

    Google Scholar 

  6. HRW FabLab Homepage. Accessed 29 Jan 2020

  7. PIKSL Homepage. Accessed 29 Jan 2020

  8. SELFMADE Homepage. Accessed 29 Jan 2020

  9. PIKSL Standorte. Accessed 29 Feb 2020

  10. Bosse, I., Krüger, D., Linke, H., Pelka, B.: The maker movement’s potential for an inclusive society. In: Howaldt, J., Kaletka, C., Schröder, A., Zirngiebel, M. (eds.) Atlas of Social Innovation. 2nd volume - A World of new Practices, pp. 54–57. oekom, München (2019)

    Google Scholar 

  11. Bosse, I., Pelka, B.: Peer production by persons with disabilities - opening 3D-printing aids to everybody in an inclusive MakerSpace. J. Enabl. Technol. (2020). [Peer-reviewed paper]

    Google Scholar 

  12. Bosse, I., Pelka, B.: Selbstbestimmte und individualisierte Fertigung von Alltagshilfen per 3D-Druck für Menschen mit Behinderungen. In: Orthopädie Technik 02/20 (2020).[Accepted paper]

    Google Scholar 

  13. Brown, T., Wyatt, J.: Design thinking for social innovation. Dev. Outreach 12(1), 29–43 (2010)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to Ann Christin Schulz .

Editor information

Editors and Affiliations

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

Copyright information

© 2020 Springer Nature Switzerland AG

About this paper

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this paper

Schulz, A.C., Hirtz, C. (2020). Digital Skills for People with Disabilities in a Learning and Demonstration Experience Laboratory. In: Antona, M., Stephanidis, C. (eds) Universal Access in Human-Computer Interaction. Applications and Practice. HCII 2020. Lecture Notes in Computer Science(), vol 12189. Springer, Cham.

Download citation

  • DOI:

  • Published:

  • Publisher Name: Springer, Cham

  • Print ISBN: 978-3-030-49107-9

  • Online ISBN: 978-3-030-49108-6

  • eBook Packages: Computer ScienceComputer Science (R0)