Designing digital materials for digital fabrication in education (PhD project)

Today the idea of digital fabrication laboratories has started to move into educational institutions such as primary schools and universities - but how to properly design and implement such technologies in education? My ph.d. project is to study the design of digital fabrication technologies and materials, inspired by hacker and libre software culture, creative processes and ethics, in order to develop a design framework for designing digital fabrication materials and their interaction modalities in order to scaffold adolescents in developing digital design literacy, and thus get a better understanding of how such designs can help scaffold future generations in developing digital design literacy.

Digital networks and technologies spread throughout the world and becomes more ubiquitous in our life. One of the latest trends is that of personal digital fabrication technologies and materials, which has sparked new energy into so-called digital fabrication laboratories around the world. These labs are build on many of the same principles and technologies found in underground hacker spaces, e.g. the idea of sharing software code or hardware schematics with the public domain as to promote peer-production and feedback. In the wake of these developments a social do-it-yourself movement denounced as the maker-movement has started to reemerge, symbolized by the image of the 3D-printer - often said to be a democratization of industrial production which will eventually lead to a revolution in the way we consume and produce artifacts. 

Selected references

Christensen, K. S. and Ivsersen, O. S.: Designing Digital Technology and Materials for Digital Fabrication in Schools: a Hackerism Perspective. In FabLearn.eu, Aarhus Denmark, 2014.