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Europe has a growing community of individuals, projects and organisations promoting an open and people-powered approach to the development of devices, ecosystems and communities to face new challenges in the health and care sector.
With healthcare spending having risen faster than economic growth in all OECD countries over the past twenty years, and with public expenditure set to increase to 14 per cent by 2060, there is an urgent need to find solutions that optimise resources, reduce costs and, mostly, involve people actively in the process of design a future and bottom-up care system.
We believe that DSI holds great potential for the future of health and care. In particular, we’re excited by the growing role of “maker” approaches which use tools like digital fabrication and open-source technologies to improve people’s lives.
The health and care cluster, in fact, features projects in which makerspaces, citizens and municipalities collaborate with each other on new accessibility platforms addressed to people with disabilities (Hackability.it, rampette.opencare.cc), associations of parents develop devices to support their kids affected by rare diseases (fighthestroke.org), crowdsourcing platforms help to provide data and information for scientific research (Diario elettronico degli attacchi), makers co-create devices that fill the gap in medical technology (Talking Hands), designers share their creations to enable a generation of new and shared kindergartens (SopraSotto) and fablabs help children in hospitals to learn and play with technologies (DearRobo&Bobo).
To support this cluster, we at WeMake are undertaking the following activities:
By taking part in the learning journey, practitioners will gain key skills on impact measurement, open source innovation, community engagement and collaborative spaces, etc. The goal is to open conversations with other practitioners and to reduce the distance between the worlds of practice and policy, to highlight innovators’ solutions to those who shape the current health and care system.
Based in Milan, WeMake is a makerspace and fablab that is opening technologies for smart communities. We’re excited by the growing role of “maker” approaches which use tools like digital fabrication and open-source technologies to improve people’s lives.
To find out more and to get involved, email firstname.lastname@example.org.