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
- People with disabilities