Published: May 17, 2017, Edited by: Mads Hobye

Experimental research and learning environment

Fablab RUC is an experimental and creative learning and research facility. It is the place where cutting edge tools for rapid prototyping is available. FabLab RUC is showing the way for this renewal of renewal of pedagogical and research methods and putting Roskilde University at the forefront of this revolution.

The ‘Designerly’ approaches to academic research enables students and researchers (hereafter both named researchers) not only to observe and reflect but also to engage in the discourse on potential’s that lie beyond the current - the designs empowers them to engage and experiment in dialogue with real world contexts and real world participants about future scenarios. This enables a dialogical bridge between real life practices and theoretical discourses within academia. The challenge lies in creating good enough design processes and artifacts for such dialogue to happen. Hence, a creative environment where rapid prototyping and other material/technological experiments unfold as an integrated part of the research praxis.

The knowledge gap between the internal workings of a technical system and actual users has never been greater. Today one would void its warranty if one dares to break the seal of a smartphone. It is time to regain control of our technology. Not just because of the technical challenge, but because it enables and active democratic discourse on how it should be used and the potentials of it.

Every project, advanced or not, leaves the one engaging with it more knowledgeable than when she started out the process. We want to turn this into a wider knowledge sharing culture. Since this is inherently a collaborative process, the lab is also open for people outside Roskilde University as well. 3D-printers are still quirky to use and a CNC still requires an elaborate labyrinth of tools to work. We want to develop and adapt existing and new tools so one can use a minimal amount steps to get results. Moreover, it is important to use and design open-source (or at least free to use) tools so the use is not limited to the Fablab, but can be installed on everybody’s computer, no matter the budget.