CoWerk – collaborative production in open workshops

Headed by the Institute for Ecological Economy Research (IÖW) the transdisciplinary joint project CoWerkProjektwebseite, funded by the Federal Ministry for Education and Research BMBF, examines the collaborative economy between low-tech and high-tech – sharing, DIY, makerspaces and open workshops. In trends like self-constructed cargo bikes, sewing workshops, repair-cafés and FabLabs, a new economic model emerges – decentralized, horizontally organized and bearing large potentials for a more sustainable mode of production and consumption.

Therefore the central research questions in the project CoWerk are how material peer production can be shaped in a sustainable way - ecologically, socially and economically at a time, and how this new economic model can be anchored in the broad base of society and can be connected to existing economic structures in the context of open innovation processes.

In CoWerk, Fraunhofer UMSICHT will work on the implementation of practical workshops and the identification of technical potentials and barriers of sustainability innovations from the collaborative

Partners: Institute for Ecological Economy Research (IÖW), Berlin; University of Bremen, Department of Technology Design and Development; Verbund offener Werkstätten (Alliance of Open Workshops); Fraunhofer ISI; Multiplicities (Berlin)

10/2014 – 09/2017