Maker Movement adds greening and meaning to manufacturing

The current insourcing boom sees manufacturing jobs returning to North America and raises interesting questions about how the movement can promote a healthy state of mind. What kind of physical environment could this wave of development and production beget? Let’s imagine what a new industrial revolution might look like in 3D.

The new Maker Movement is about creating goods through collaboration with colleagues and customers, in a quest for innovation and value for money. This approach to making things is less likely to waste resources (fuel, materials, ideas) and more likely to be appreciated by today’s “prosumers” (vs. the traditional passive consumers).

Vast impersonal factories, belching smoke and chemicals while mass-producing disposable commodities, are thus becoming the ghosts of industry past.

A different kind of physical environment is required to make the most of this next wave. Sure, Steve Jobs started out in a bland, suburban garage, but where will the great makers of the future do their best work? Already we can see maker spaces appearing in San Francisco, New York City and Ann Arbor. This means that place (having character and connection) is being recognized as a vital ingredient beyond mere space (utilitarian volume).

The above video presents a new industrial vision of cheerful, mixed use, easy-to-construct-or-adapt Maker Style environments.

Further information on the Maker Movement and insourcing boom:

The Atlantic, “The Insourcing Boom” by Charles Fishman, December 2012

“Makers: The New Industrial Revolution,” by Chris Anderson

“The Maker Movement Lowers Consumption and Waste” blog post on TriplePundit:

Makerspace Directory

-Sharon VanderKaay


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    We see our collaboration with clients and colleagues as providing a living lab for enriching the creative process. Farrow’s built work has been internationally recognized for leadership in human-centric design. This is where we come to discuss our ideas as they hatch and our experiences as they happen.
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