Paper Themes

Each edition of the Making Futures journal brings together a spectrum of peer-reviewed and selected speaker responses to the IV edition ‘Making Futures: Return of the Maker…’ headline theme. These contributions are organised through the three Research Workshops, the Digital Crafting Panel, and six Thematic Sessions to which they correspond as downloadable PDF papers with authors appearing in alphabetical order.
  • 1
    Lifecycles of Material Worlds - Sustainability in Practice
    Will investigate the ways in which practitioners are proactively exploring sustainably engaged projects and practices. These initiatives might involve new materials innovation and/or pursue localised sourcing; perhaps incorporating cradle-to-cradle design and make strategies, or associated approaches of make and mend, re-cycling, up-cycling, re-use, and sharing.
  • 2
    Craft in an Expanded Field
    Increasingly we hear of medical researchers ‘crafting’ 3D individualised body parts and structures, often using 3D printing and growing techniques. These approaches shade into biologically customised compounds that work at molecular levels… Meanwhile, Sennett famously speaks of the craft of Linux programmers, and Crawford that of motorcycle mechanics.
  • 3
    Critical Perspectives on Producers and Consumers
    What are the historically informed critical-cultural and economic perspectives that help define practitioners and consumers in relation to the political economies of industrialisation in its Fordist and post-Fordist phases? How are these psychological positions and desiring economies evolving with regards to a future in which environmental sustainability becomes a key (if not singularly the key) operative paradigm?
  • 4
    Translations Across Local-Global Divides
    What are the tensions and flows expressed in craft and design-to-make production and consumption in the ‘post-colonial’ contexts of contemporary global capitalism and its possible futures? For example, in the context of contemporary China, craft and design are fields in which the meanings of past, present and future, of private and public competencies and their boundaries and interactions, are contested and negotiated...
  • 5
    Materials & Processes of Making
    Where does craft, and making more generally, sit in relation to, on the one hand, the reinvention or repurposing of older technologies and materials, and new emerging materials and media on the other? Do traditional craft methods necessarily provide for more ecologically sustainable practices than modern industrial systems? And what relationships are there, or might there be, between craft and small-scale making practices and advanced technological models of production...
  • 6
    Making Thinking – Crafting Education
    Most will agree that a better future depends significantly on whether we can successfully educate younger generations to appreciate the importance of natural systems, the social structures dependent upon them, and how to live creatively, adapt and innovate, within a context of finite energy and material resources. Purposive engagement with materials through art, craft and making, as forms of concrete problem solving are championed as learning platforms that can engender these values...