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Intergenerational Techno-Creative Activities in a Library Fablab


Abstract and Figures

A growing number of libraries are introducing maker spaces for facilitating the access of a diverse audience to the activities and tools that can foster the development of digital co-creativity and learning by making artefacts. In this paper, we introduce the intergenerational techno-creative activities we have co-designed in the context of the EspaceLab makerspace under the project #smartcitymaker, and we then analyze the potential of intergenerational techno-creative activities to overcome the gender and age stereotypes related to creative uses of technologies. We observe that intergenerational learning does not occur spontaneously in most cases and makerspace facilitation must promote intergenerational collaboration for achieving the objectives of facilitating learning across the lifespan by taking advantage of the forces of each age group.
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adfa, p. 1, 2011.
© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011
Intergenerational techno-creative activities in a library
Margarida Romero and Benjamin Lille
1 Faculté des Sciences de l‘Éducation, Université Laval, Québec, Canada,
Abstract. A growing number of libraries are introducing maker spaces for fa-
cilitating the access of a diverse audience to the activities and tools that can fos-
ter the development of digital co-creativity and learning by making artefacts. In
this paper, we introduce the intergenerational techno-creative activities we have
co-designed in the context of the EspaceLab makerspace under the project
#smartcitymaker, and we then analyze the potential of intergenerational techno-
creative activities to overcome the gender and age stereotypes related to crea-
tive uses of technologies. We observe that intergenerational learning does not
occur spontaneously in most cases and makerspace facilitation must promote
intergenerational collaboration for achieving the objectives of facilitating learn-
ing across the lifespan by taking advantage of the forces of each age group.
Keywords: Intergenerational learning · Library · Digital creativity · Maker-
space, Makerculture
1 Introduction
In the past few decades, libraries have been a popular place for sharing books and,
more recently, multimedia documents. In the past few years, we have observed the
emergence of makerspaces in public spaces such as libraries. Makerspaces are physi-
cal spaces, often in educational or public spaces, which aim to interconnect people
who want to engage in constructing and tinkering with objects, new technologies and
digital tools [1]. While the term makerspace is widely used in North America, the
term FabLab (Fabrication Lab) is sometimes used to describe it in Europe. In both
cases, the spaces unite people interested in technological tinkering and in the co-
construction of artefacts [2]. For Capdevila [3], hacker spaces, makerspaces, living
labs, fablabs or co-working spaces are common denominations of localized spaces of
collaborative innovation (LSCI) where knowledge communities meet to collectively
innovate spaces of collaborative innovation”. For this author, common features of
these spaces include openness to the public and shared norms related to the way they
share information, tools and knowledge among the different participants sharing these
collaborative spaces of innovation. According to Dougherty [1], the community and
the makers interconnectedness are at the basis of the maker movement and an essen-
tial trait of the makerspaces reuniting makers of different ages for learning and creat-
ing artefacts together. Intergenerational makerspace activities could help overcome
creative and digital ageism (which will be later defined) by engaging older adults in
the techno-creative makerspace activities. Engaging teens, young and older adults in a
joint techno-creative activities, such as digital game design, allows each of the age
groups to know each other better and ensure their own representativeness in the game
design process and product they develop together [4, 5]. Makerspace activities con-
sider a larger type of activities than digital game design, to include 3D modelling and
printing, and electronic and wood tinkering among others. The high diversity of activ-
ities that are usually developed in the makerspaces allows the older participants to
value their know-how in a wide range of skills: from woodworking, to electrical tink-
ering to the different techniques of sewing, older participants can share a wide range
of diverse skills that could be required when participants are engaged in complex
making projects such as the #smartcitymaker project we will introduce in this paper.
We introduce the #smartcitymaker project and the way teen participants are engaged
towards the design and making and of a city model, which integrates both analogic
and digital techniques and materials to develop the different components of the city.
The weekly activities developed with the teen participants engaged in the Québec city
EspaceLab invite their parents and grandparents to help with the activities in order to
promote intergenerational learning and learning between learners of different ages
(from 8 to 16 years old). The informal context of the EspaceLab in the Monique Cor-
riveau library (Québec, Canada) contributes to blurring some of the age-specific lines
usually found in formal education contexts. In the next section, we introduce creative
and digital ageism as one of the stereotypes to tackle through intergenerational learn-
ing experiences in the makerspace. Afterwards, we introduce intergenerational learn-
ing and the potential for both younger and older adults, specifically in the context of
maker educational projects [6]. Then, we introduce the activities in the EspaceLab
Junior and the project #smartcitymaker and the potential of the project for engaging
participants in intergenerational learning activities. Finally, we introduce different
game mechanics, which can help in promoting intergenerational making.
2 Creative and digital ageism
Makerspaces located in libraries can provide the opportunity to unite different genera-
tions and help fight some of the age-related stereotypes, such as the spontaneous crea-
tivity of younger children [7] and digital and creative ageism. For Butler [8] ageism is
the “systematic stereotyping and discrimination against people because they are old,
just as racism and sexism accomplish this with skin colour and gender. In this paper
we consider two types of ageism: creative ageism and digital ageism. Creative ageism
assumes that older people are less creative because of their age. Romero and Hubert
[9] consider digital ageism as a form of discrimination appearing through the use of
technologies that have not been adapted for older adults or that conveys a negative
image of older adults through their representation of older adults.
Different authors have pointed to the interest of intergenerational activities as a way
to reduce age-related stereotypes [10, 11]. Not only can younger participants value an
older person’s knowledge and know-how, but they can be inspired by their less im-
pulsive attitudes towards the use of technology. Working with older adults can also
offer learning opportunities for younger learners, as they are able to develop skills and
acquire topic-related knowledge through collaborative work. Intergenerational collab-
oration can also foster broader personal development amongst younger learners, as
interactions between adults and adolescents are characterized by warmth and ac-
ceptance. Adults expressing an interest in the youngsters and promoting autonomy
may contribute to the development of their identity and their sense of responsibility.
Intergenerational collaboration could also play a role in breaking down some of the
age-based stereotypes that younger learners may have towards older adults and how
they interact with digital technologies.
2.1 Intergenerational learning
While some intergenerational learning programs are designed to foster a one-sided
transfer of knowledge and competencies from youth to the elderly and vice versa,
effective intergenerational learning describes the way by which individuals from dif-
ferent generations are able to come together and learn from one another. It is a “sys-
tematic transfer of knowledge, skills, competencies, norms and values” that allows
both the generations to stay gain a deeper understanding of the other generation’s
culture [12]. While this concept originated in the context of the family, intergenera-
tional learning has evolved and expanded in contemporary society as a function of
non-familial social groups. Due to a geographical shift where families are relocating
and separating farther from relatives, the familial intergenerational shift is wavering.
Also, economic and social changes have resulted in changes in the social contract and
evolving expectations about the relative position of generations in society [13, p. 52].
To some, older adults are more considered as a burden than as a resource. That shift
combined with ageism may result in low social capital, which is defined by Balatti
and Falk [14] as the resource and access to network and communities, as older adults
sometimes don’t have access to their initial source of social capital: the family. There-
fore, the symbiotic relationship that exists, which centres on growth and learning,
social insights, and new technological skills faces a concerning hit and should there-
fore be explored between non-biologically related individuals to bolster social and
emotional growth. Many programs related to intergenerational learning are grounded
in Erikson’s theory on life span development [15]. He postulated that children and
older adults have parallel developmental needs, and this unique relationship fosters
personal growth and agency. When younger and older generations join together for a
shared activity, they are able to share their own personal experiences related to aging,
experiences, values and aspirations. Older learners may feel after these events that
they have more autonomy than originally realized can actively influence the commu-
nity, and have a deeper understanding of younger generations and newer technologies.
Younger learners may walk away with higher self-esteem and self-efficacy, a deeper
understanding of adults, a belief that they can be appreciated and respected, and that
they can even trust others more fully. Younger learners may also have the possibility
to develop a more positive attitude towards aging. The effects of this reciprocity be-
tween older and younger individuals opens minds to new skills and insights as well
as new social structures and technologies influences both parties so that they can feel
empowered and have a new perspective on lifelong learning. Intergenerational learn-
ing may also increase participants social capital as learning, a social activity, creates
condition that can foster social capital development by extending, enriching, and re-
constructing social networks and by building trust and relationships. Intergenerational
learning also aims to influence the development of tolerance, understanding, and re-
spect between participants to encourage individual behaviours and attitudes that influ-
ence community participation [14, 16]. Granville [17] demonstrates the social and
educational potential of intergenerational learning in his case study where young of-
fenders in rehabilitation were provided placements to work in a community service
centre with older adults with physical abilities or dementia. Interviews showed pres-
ence of intergenerational learning as the young offenders developed employability
competencies while older adults developed a more positive attitude towards youth and
a better opinion on their own agency as older adults with physical disabilities or de-
mentia. Intergenerational learning therefore possesses a strong potential in addressing
ageism while also offering learning opportunities for younger and older learning to
develop valuable competencies.
2.2 Intergenerational making
The maker movement culture based on sharing, giving, participating and supporting
[6] could facilitate intergenerational learning. By encouraging democratic cybercul-
ture that is available to everyone, maker culture and maker spaces can provide oppor-
tunities for intergenerational learning. It provides chances for participation that act as
a mediator of transformation of knowledge and the ability to practice learning within
and between generations [6]. Maker space activities can bring together parents,
grandparents and youngsters to tinker and create together while also understanding
not only science and technology concepts but also those of the arts and social scienc-
es. Intergenerational making activities, like intergenerational learning, can provide
opportunities to learn from one another and share new knowledge. Maker spaces are
open to do-it-yourselfers of varied backgrounds and ages. Maker space activities that
combines digital technologies with crafts and more traditional technologies such as a
sewing machine can therefore require different a variety of competencies and skills
that can be attained by collaboration of younger and older learners. Using maker
spaces for joint projects requiring both experience-based and technological know-how
could be an opportunity not only for different types of intergenerational learning but
also for achieving the goal of inclusive design. Moreover, the sharing of knowledge,
projects and achievements encouraged in maker space activities can foster family and
community involvement for younger and older participants. Intergenerational making
activities therefore possess a great potential for participating in the improvement of
cross-generational relationships and for sustaining learning across the lifespan.
3 #Smartcitymaker project in the EspaceLab Junior
3.1 EspaceLab, an intergenerational makerspace situated in a public library
EspaceLab is the first Québec fablab to be part of the MIT FabLab network. For
Debaque, president of EspaceLab, we must stress the desire to develop a culture of
pooling resources. The location of EspaceLab within the Quebec City library net-
work facilitates is key strategic aspect to support the access to the makerspace for
everyone, independently of their age or their technological skills. EspaceLab is an
open and intergenerational makerspace that brings citizens closer to design and tech-
no-creative manufacturing. In the image below we can appreciate an informal team
composed by adults, a teen and a toddler who had informally engaged in understand-
ing the functioning of a Sparki robot. By being open to all the public, EspaceLab also
offers the opportunity for underprivileged children to have access to digital technolo-
gies that would be harder to have access to.
Fig. 1. EspaceLab open door activity reuniting intergenerational participants
3.2 EspaceLab Junior
While the EspaceLab offers general services such as introductory workshops and
tutorials aiming to develop participants’ comprehension of the digital tools available
at the fablab, EspaceLab also offers EspaceLab Junior which offers the opportunity
for participants, learners from eight to sixteen years old, to co-design techno-creative
projects. EspaceLab Junior has an intergenerational learning objectives which aims to
extend Quebec library services to an intergenerational audience composed of teens,
their parents, other young and older adults and provide them the opportunity and con-
text to learn and engage in digital creative and educational activities. EspaceLab Jun-
ior activities aims to promote the 21st century competencies, in a playful and practical
way. Among these skills, problem solving, digital creativity, collaboration and com-
putational thinking could be developed through the co-design and achievement of
techno-creative projects such as #smartcitymaker. 21st century competencies could be
developed not only for younger learners, but also for older adults that are engaged in
the project.
Fig. 2. EspaceLab Junior techno-creative activities
By being an environment open to all the public, EspaceLab Junior allows adults
and older adults to engage in the #smartcitymaker project. Engagement is facilitated
because many of the parents of the children work in techno-creative fields [18], such
as engineering and computer science, and therefore can instill in their children a thirst
for these types of activities. While most adults come from techno-creative fields, not
all of them have a working knowledge of the tools available at EspaceLab Junior. For
example, one grandmother only wanted to transport her grandchildren to the library
where EspaceLab Junior was held, but when she saw the types of activities that the
children were engaged in, she first decided to watch and observe and progressively
engaged in the learning activities. While, at first, she wanted to understand the digital
and tangible technologies for her own interest, she was soon offering her own input
and insights to children on project progression. Maker activities therefore offer a col-
laborative setting where all participants are aiding one another in order to solve com-
plex problems, such as the co-creation of or the tinkering with tangible and digital
artefacts. The informal setting of EspaceLab Junior also allows for any willing chil-
dren or adults that wish to join an activity to do it at any time. The informal setting
aims to encourage intergenerational collaboration.
Fig. 3. EspaceLab Junior intergenerational collaboration potential
3.3 #SmartCityMakerProjet
The #SmartCityMaker is a research project that aims to develop learners’ 21st-century
competencies by proposing a theme-immersed techno-creative project in which learn-
ers are engaged in a learning-by-making approach through co-designing and co-
constructing a model of a city. #SmartCityMaker is composed of pedagogical se-
quences where technology is used to foster learners’ design thinking [19] by placing
learners in a complex task that requires a high level of creativity. #SmartCityMaker
adopts an approach that offers digital resources that are combined with a tangible
model of a smart city. Townsend [20] defines the smart city as places where infor-
mation technology is combined with infrastructure, architecture, everyday objects,
and even our bodies to address social, economic, and environmental problems”. In
that context, participants in EspaceLab Junior are building a smart city model with
recycled and affordable material (construction paper, tape, painting), electrical com-
ponents (smart city lighting system), electronic components (Makey Makey electronic
system linked with Scratch visual coding software) and pedagogical robots (cars of
the smart city). The combination of digital and tangible objects could offer an oppor-
tunity for learning through embodied cognition, as learners are able to physically
interact with the pedagogical artifacts. Intertwining craft with digital artifacts could
foster learners’ engagement in complex programming concepts and practices. As
Peppler and Kafai [21] valued, these three aspects are important in media art practic-
es. #SmartCityMaker aims to foster creativity, collaboration and computation. Con-
structing a city model in the classroom is a complex based activity, which requires a
certain number of sessions to be completed. The city theme has been chosen by the
potential for interdisciplinary projects to build on the city model. Cities are complex
systems, which engage all the curriculum disciplines at different stages. From geogra-
phy technic for being able to read and transpose a plan, to history and mathematics
required to reconstruct a building, all the disciplinary objectives of the Québec curric-
ulum [22] can be related to the city theme. Moreover, the concept of a smart city as a
city that uses digital technology, data analysis and connectivity to create value and
address its challenges” [15, p. 2]. The smart city theme offers a large diversity of
possible projects, which requires digital solutions to improve the problems identified
by the students in their daily lives.
Fig. 4. City model developed through the #smartcityprojet in the EspaceLab
#SmartCityMaker project is also carried out in the required course ICT uses for pre-
school and elementary school,” offered at the third year of the pre-service teachers
program in Université Laval (Canada). Constructing a city model in the classroom is a
complex based activity, which requires a certain number of sessions to be completed.
In the first sessions of the project, the #SmartCityMaker is constituted of activities,
which are developed with a higher degree of teacher regulation. The first activities
engage the learners as city planners, and each small team should define the urban rule
to design and build the building in their neighborhood. Buildings are assembled with-
in the team, and the different neighborhoods are merged at the end of the second ses-
sion of the course. Students carry out the second part of the project in parallel through
team-based projects. Each team is required to address an educational issue that they
may face in their career and analyze it. They are then asked to design a pedagogical
intervention considering Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL) possibilities. Subse-
quently, students are invited to discuss the educational limit of their activity and the
potential transferability of the activity in another educational context. Figure 5 intro-
duces the different phases and tasks within the #SmartCityMaker project. In the initia-
tion phase, students are organized in teams based on their level of confidence on the
use of ICTs in order to ensure teams are homogeneous from this perspective. The first
activities aim to develop the team building (forming and storming) and the norming
stage (Tuckman & Jensen, 1977). Norming is orchestrated through the urban rules
definition task where the teammates decide together how they will work as a team and
what are the urban rules of their neighborhood in the #SmartCityMaker project.
Fig.5 #SmartCityMaker iterative process
Within the #SmartCityMaker class-based projects, students are asked to transfer class-
developed competencies in the community. One of the modalities of transfers accept-
ed is to participate in an intergenerational maker activity in EspaceLab Junior.
4 Cues for fostering intergenerational making in the EspaceLab
By encouraging intergenerational collaboration in which people from all ages and
gender are engaged in techno-creative activities, maker activities can help in over-
coming gender and age stereotypes related to creative uses of technologies. Despite an
important potential for informal intergenerational learning of competencies and topic-
oriented knowledge through the values of the maker movement culture shared in the
EspaceLab, and the #smartcityprojet EspaceLab Junior initiative, the dynamic is not
systematic and only some of the adults and older persons engage spontaneously with
the teens engaged in the activities. We need to go further in the active promotion of
intergenerational learning opportunities by ensuring a climate which foster collabora-
tion in risk-free and judgment free context. For this we should encourage the values of
mutual aid, positive interdependence [24, 25] and attitudes of initiative taking, flexi-
bility, leadership, accountability, conflict management and collaborative and complex
problem solving competencies [2628]. We also need to further orchestrate some
activity designs that encourage intergenerational collaboration by identifying compe-
tencies possessed by participants from every generation and by taking them into ac-
count in activity design. Participation could also be elicited by implementing gaming
mechanics in maker activities such as collaborative competition and by adding a nar-
rative to maker activities. Such structuration of maker activities would also need to
respect values of maker culture such as openness, democratization and inclusion of
all. Like other scholars [6, 2931], we believe that it is important to move away from
top-down approach in analyzing and implementing intergenerational maker activity
and instead analyze how all participants can be directly involved in maker activity
design as well as analyzing their motives for participating in making activities. Older
adults and youngsters could therefore discuss and design their own making activities.
We also need to ensure that adults and older adults that are not comfortable with the
tools used at EspaceLab feel secure in taking part in maker space activities. Also, we
need to identify adultsand older adults’ skills that could be invested in maker space
activities so that anyone can contribute to the progression of maker projects. Creating
two open questionnaires that would be given before the activity could be the first step
in understanding motives, representation and beliefs of participants in intergenera-
tional making activities that could then help us encourage intergenerational collabora-
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... Alekh et al., 2018;Hamidi et al., 2017;Iwata et al., 2019;Katterfeldt et al., 2018;Mori, 2017;Okundaye et al., 2018), and of informal contexts, such as libraries, Fab Labs, (smart) homes, museums and after-school centres (e.g. Kazemitabaar et al., 2017;Meintjes & Schelhowe, 2016;Romero & Lille, 2017;Sadka & Zuckerman, 2017;Voigt et al., 2019), have also been conducted. In the formal context, and sometimes also in the non-formal one, children's participation in the activities is mandatory (e.g. ...
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Cultivating children’s Maker mindset by facilitating their involvement in Makerspaces is recognized by researchers around the world as a topic worth investigating. Previous studies have revealed several different roles for the adults involved; however, there is little elaboration on the characteristics and strategies associated with these roles. This study focuses on digital fabrication and Making activities with children aged (K12). It presents the results of interview data collected from nine adult actors analysed using nexus analytic concepts of interaction order and historical body as sensitizing devices. The results reveal the diverse strategies the adult actors employed as the mediators of children’s learning, independent of their formal roles, when engaged with children. The study identifies numerous challenges the adult actors faced. Overall, it shows significant variety in the mediation of children’s digital fabrication and Making activities, shaped by adult actors with different histories and backgrounds and within different contexts. The study includes the implications for the research and practice of digital fabrication and Making with children.
... The number of studies examining supporting family and community relationships are relatively equal and both types are necessary to positively impact ageism, as was cited by several publications. Only four publications included both family and community aspects [29,33,78,87]. ...
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Background The growing capabilities of technology are enabling increased support for communication and meaningful interactions that span distance, cultures, and generations. Interactions between youth (people younger than 19 years old) and older adults (people over 50 years old) have been shown to provide many benefits for both populations. Technology has a significant potential role to play in supporting intergenerational connectivity, however, little research has been done to specifically explore what role technology might have. This scoping review examines the literature to establish what technologies have been created or used to foster intergenerational interactions to infer overarching themes and propose directions for future research. Methods A structured search was conducted through MEDLINE (PubMed), IEEE, CINAHL (EBSCOhost), ACM, and Scopus databases. Identified articles were screened first by title, then by abstract, and finally by full paper screening. Inclusion criteria were: written in English, contained both youth below 21 and adults over 50 years of age, peer-reviewed primary research (e.g. journal and conference publications) or published theses/dissertations, and presented design or use of a technology with the specific intention of fostering intergenerational connectivity. An inductive analysis was performed to identify emergent concepts related to the reviewed literature. Results A total of 36, 707 articles were identified; 77 were included in the review after the screening process. Five emergent concepts were identified: 1) Technology for intergenerational connectivity is an emerging field, 2) Interventions are primarily games-focused, 3) Research has been discipline-centric, 4) Lack of consistent vocabulary, and 5) Lack of consistent methodologies. Conclusions This review is the first of its kind to scope the body of research related to technology fostering intergenerational connectivity. The breadth of methods reflects the new and multidisciplinary nature of this field and underscores the importance of creating shared approaches and vocabulary to increase knowledge sharing. This, in turn, could support more rapid and targeted progress in this field.
... The citizens then co-create with other stakeholders based on the demand in a process that must be stimulated by the government (Alverti et al., 2016). Strictly technocratic management generates resistance among citizens who fear the rigidity of technological bureaucracy, and among those who suspect that an invasion of their private data may affect their privacy (Romero and Lille, 2017). ...
This paper pursued to evaluate the residents’ evaluation on the smart sustainable city and the sense of community. The study analyzed interviews with 392 citizens from five neighboring cities from a micro-region in southern Brazil. Factorial analysis and linear regression were applied. The investigation recognized three factors for smart sustainable cities evaluation: public services and facilities; material well-being, and environmental well-being. Linear regression reveals that residents’ satisfaction with the city is predicated on the material well-being, public services and facilities, environmental well-being, and sense of community, which explain 40.2% of satisfaction with the city. Considering a smart sustainable city viewpoint, the study accomplishes that: (i) policies should be projected from the neighborhood standpoint, due to the facility of understanding shared values (ii) sense of community should be included in policies for smart sustainable city; (ii) policies should be proposed from the neighborhood perspective, due to the facility of understanding shared values; (iii) the design of neighborhoods and cities should prioritize social interactions, with the view to build social capital and facilitate policies implementation. By integrating the smartness to sustainability approaches in the city context, this study intends to contribute to a major discussion on sustainable development, with special attention to residents’ evaluation. Finally, the paper offers pertinent outcomes for urban planners and social researchers, by finding factors that influence the sense of community and residents’ evaluation on their city and by offering elements for academic and political and debates. Keywords: Smart city, Sustainable city, Sense of community, Smart Sustainable city, Survey, Brazil.
In as early as the 1980s, air traffic flow management actions (ATFM), as supplementary strategies to match the demand for air travel with the available resource capacities, have been widely discussed and evaluated based on its implementation and probable trade-offs between conflicting and diverse interests of stakeholders in the commercial aviation industry. Among the ATFM actions—ground holding, airborne holding, speed controlling, and rerouting—rerouting is found to be a viable recourse particularly when flights are already at its en-route phase, where the presumed and more favored based on safety considerations, holding of flights on the ground, becomes completely infeasible. Some research works put forward relevant solution approaches including deterministic and stochastic mathematical programming models, machine learning algorithms, and simulation models. Despite the relevance and validity demonstrated by such models in testbed environments, even on a large-scale basis, these models failed to sufficiently capture the individual and collective interests of stakeholders altogether. Considering that the decision process in the air transportation system is taken part by stakeholders (i.e., airlines, air traffic control), previous research works tend to satisfy only one stakeholder by incorporating one or more of its interests (e.g., cost minimization, reduction of distance traveled). Such a case does not take full regard to how a stakeholder-specific solution might affect another stakeholder’s preference. Therefore, this paper aims to address the post-departure aircraft rerouting problem by proposing a multiple stakeholder-based target-oriented robust-optimization (MS-TORO) approach that incorporates the individual interests of stakeholders. A hypothetical case study is conducted to illustrate the proposed model. It can be noted that a significant shift of route preference occurs as goals are aligned in terms of the individual interests of the stakeholders and that of their collective goal. The results of this work can provide practical insights to stakeholders in the course of decision-making in a particular area of the air transportation domain.
3D printers are a fascinating tool for engineering teaching and education, related to a large variety of subjects. More and more universities are integrating not just the topic of additive manufacturing, but 3D printers’ infrastructures to create great learning experiences. The main scope of the paper is to analyze the state of teaching and learning 3D printing in the universities, presenting the advantages, particularities, and the involved actors. There will be supported the ideas that through 3D printing, students can translate their ideas directly into reality, and spatial imagination. Usually, initial teaching and learnings activities begins with simple physical objects and later deals with abstract, virtual 3D models and complex assemblies. The “magic” of teaching and learning 3D printing is that it allows quick reversal, from the 3D CAD drawing to the physical object; the direct link of the two processes is stimulating creativity and enhance imagination. Finally, there will be discussed the case of teaching and learning 3D printing at Politehnica University of Timisoara (Romania) with the support offer by the “3D Printing Support Service for Innovative Citizens” INNO3D project (2019-1-IE203-000693INNO3D).
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Récemment la fièvre « maker » fait une épidémie dans les écoles, les bibliothèques et les centres communautaires. Les écoles les plus innovatrices veulent des « makerspaces », les bibliothèques s’empressent de s’équiper d’imprimantes 3D pour être à la fine pointe de la technologie et les centres communautaires veulent être le lieu de référence des activités « makers ». Dans cette effervescence, notre équipe de recherche mène des études sur la culture « maker » critique pour mieux comprendre leur valeur ajoutée pour l’apprentissage. À travers une série d’ateliers portant sur des thématiques telles que la construction d’une table d’arcade, d’une imprimante 3D, de manettes de jeux vidéos accessibles et la participation à des « maker jams », nous avons identifié plusieurs attitudes et compétences « makers » essentielles. Parmi les attitudes nous observons la prise d’initiative, l’apprentissage par le jeu, l’adaptation authentique et la persistance. Parmi les compétences, la collaboration, le design et la (co)planification. Le développement de ces attitudes et de ces compétences dans un contexte « maker » se distingue du développement en contexte éducatif par les itérations jalonnées par l’erreur et par une incontournable motivation intrinsèque.
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Inspired by posthumanist and new materialist perspectives, this article offers multi-perspective post-qualitative findings highlighting adults’ entanglements with environmentally oriented makerspace activities in higher education. The article draws on adult education studies and maker research to generate neomaterialist understandings of arts-based environmental education for adults. Using a methodology of w(e)aving as a way of listening, two posthuman vignettes are presented. The vignettes introduce Annike’s—an in-service elementary teacher—process of crafting a metaphorical representation of plastic waste in the ocean as part of a maker education and literacies module. The authors use diffraction, agential cuts, and ‘glow data’ to engage with Annike’s artefact, mappings, email communication, and interview data, as well as the affective flows that these generate. Posthuman methodologies point to findings that shed light on dynamic relationalities, orienting researchers towards more environmentally just futures. Posthuman makerspace research that employs the arts has the potential to work towards craftivism, emphasising the role of the arts in rendering humans accountable for matters of ethics, especially in situations where those adults are teachers.
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In this chapter, we seek to contribute to a reflection on cross-generational sharing and learning by presenting a position paper on the potential that the implementation of maker spaces presents in formal and informal educational settings. We first discuss the main characteristics of the maker movement and illustrate some concrete activities that are taking place in Montreal and Quebec City. We then explore to which extent students build knowledge within maker spaces, acquiring knowledge, and competencies through a participatory approach with the extended members of the school community. Our conclusions highlight the great potential that maker spaces hold for the improvement of cross-generational relationships and for the foundation of learning across the lifespan.
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Digital game design is a complex activity relying on multiple skills of the 21st century as such creativity, problem solving, collaboration in interdisciplinary teams and computational thinking. The complexity of the knowledge modelling and creation process, game design is a powerful learning activity that could benefit in learning from childhood to older adults. Our experiences take advantage of the digital game design as a complex learning activity and engages learners from different age groups in a joint activity. In this paper, we analyze the scaffolding process of intergenerational game design activities as an instructional learning strategy. We argue that the process could help learners from different ages and backgrounds to collaborate together in doing progressive steps through their game design process.
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This paper will focus on intergenerational digital games between grandparents and their grandchildren, which could enhance not only their physical and social well-being but also social bonding between them. The introduction (section 1) will show that this is a topic which has been neglected in digital game research. Therefore, after having discussed the relevance of intergenerational relations in section 2.1, attention will be paid to empirical studies on the motivation of younger and older adults to play digital games (section 2.2) and the impact of age-related difficulties on playing digital games (section 2.3). Finally, the implications for the design of intergenerational digital games will be sketched in section 3.
This report presents results from extensive fieldwork carried out by the Wider Benefits of Learning research team. It presents an original analytical framework developed specifically for this study, combined with empirical results from 140 in-depth biographical interviews in three different areas of England. The interviews explore the way learning affects people’s health and well-being; their family lives; and their engagement in civic activity. The report addresses these effects at both an individual and collective level. It concludes with a set of significant policy implications.
The performance of places of knowledge co-creation The case of FabLabs Although FabLabs (Fabrication Laboratories) have become a huge phenomenon, their performance based on their socio-economic embeddedness is still an open research question. Drawing on an original world database (N=48), the author shows that the production of documented projects and the transformation of those projects into a new company stems from interactions between the FabLab and its innovative eco-system. In particular, all other things being equal, interactions with peripheral and explorative actors lead to higher levels of creativity and documented projects. New company creation appears to be significantly greater when the FabLab is an intermediary platform or a middle ground between these peripheral actors and a core of bigger companies that are more oriented towards exploitation and that seem to harvest the FabLab’s creativity.
Creativity through "maker" experiences and design thinking in the education of librarians.
In this article, we highlight why and how industrial and organizational psychologists can take advantage of research on 21st century skills and their assessment. We present vital theoretical perspectives, a suitable framework for assessment, and exemplary instruments with a focus on advances in the assessment of human capital. Specifically, complex problem solving (CPS) and collaborative problem solving (ColPS) are two transversal skills (i.e., skills that span multiple domains) that are generally considered critical in the 21st century workplace. The assessment of these skills in education has linked fundamental research with practical applicability and has provided a useful template for workplace assessment. Both CPS and ColPS capture the interaction of individuals with problems that require the active acquisition and application of knowledge in individual or group settings. To ignite a discussion in industrial and organizational psychology, we discuss advances in the assessment of CPS and ColPS and propose ways to move beyond the current state of the art in assessing job-related skills.