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2 minutes to read Posted on Wednesday August 30, 2017

Updated on Monday November 6, 2023

portrait of Nicole McNeilly

Nicole McNeilly

Impact Advisor , Europeana Foundation

#MakewithEuropeana at Maker Faire Hannover

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On 27 August 2017, Europeana took to the stage at Maker Faire Hannover (MFH) to show makers, researchers, and interested members of the public how they can #MakeWithEuropeana. MFH 2017 was estimated to bring together 20.000 members of the public as well as 800 makers across 170 exhibitions. It was a great location to explore makers practice and to get feedback on what Europeana has to offer.

The event was open to a huge diversity of maker practice - from robotics to T-shirt printing, to drone contests and mobility and transport innovations. Our presentation attracted a small and engaged audience which set the scene for an informal and open dialogue. None of the attendees had heard of Europeana before but they were curious of what our platform could bring to the makers movement. They left informed and inspired, after hearing about the wealth of content that is available for free reuse, the tools we provide to access this content and the services and opportunities we initiate to stimulate reuse. They left with their favourite images from the Wotify maker cards developed by Platoniq, designed to show the cultural wealth available on the Europeana platform.

The presentation was followed by interesting discussions. One audience member reflected that Europeana’s offer fits with the open sharing culture of the makers movement, whereby makers release designs, code, etc., as open source or otherwise so others can actively use it. Consider this: if a maker converts a 2D image of a vase from Europeana into a 3D file, how can we take this back onto the Europeana platform or otherwise feature it? Not surprisingly, copyright also emerged as an important topic, particularly concerning ownership and rights after digitization (e.g. once a 3D model is made).

MFH’s other events proved thought provoking. One panel debate on Youtube Makers was a great reminder that there are far more makers online that could ever be gathered in one space, and that digital platforms like Youtube are the way to reach them. We need to do more to venture into online communities as this could be particularly time and resource effective. On the other hand, one of the panel members openly thanked events like Maker Faire, noting that Europe still lacked the ‘physical’ side of the community that is more developed in regions like the US.

We’ll be continuing our Makers Pilot until the end of 2017. Read the slides from the presentation in Hannover, have a look back at our most recent campaign dedicated to maps and stay tuned to find out what our next social media campaign will be, launching in October 2017.