Early morning of Wednesday, 23rd November 2022, started at FabLab Siegen, Germany, where several makerspaces, creative hubs and FabLabs from partner universities have been brought together by ATHENA. The “FabLab x ATHENA” workshop aimed to bring together the creative spaces of the ATHENA institutions and, after finding common points of action, plan a roadmap for collaboration between these hubs.
The three-day workshop helped to create a vast network of innovation hubs, maker culture and creative use of technology for the ATHENA community and public society.
During the workshop, participants agreed that collaborations between FabLabs and makerspaces are essential and valuable as it helps to find more connections and integration points to industry networks. It also helps build a better link between ATHENA and public society, expands the lifelong learning offers and supports ATHENA partners to set up creative facilities if they do not have them yet.
In addition, such international partnerships between FabLabs and makerspaces are valuable for such spaces themselves. It can open up new areas for research collaboration, facilitate joint workshops and projects, share equipment and knowledge, and expand the range of services offered to industry and the public.
The “FabLab x ATHENA” workshop spotlighted the new possibilities for international collaboration of ATHENA creative spaces and FabLabs. Joint activities ranging from research to training, international hackathons and makeathons, and support for industrial start-ups will be further developed and will be launched soon.
The “FabLab x ATHENA” workshop was attended by participants from creative spaces such as Porto Design Factory (Polytechnic Institute of Porto); Creativity and Innovation Centre “LinkMenų fabrikas” (Vilnius Tech); Laboratoire PRISME, Axe Image & Vision (University of Orléans); Smart lab, Industrial Management and Digital Transformation (Carinthia University of Applied Science); FabLab Siegen (University of Siegen) and supported by the ATHENA representatives from Hellenic Mediterranean University, the University of Vigo, the University of Siegen and Maria Curie-Skłodowska University.