Abstract from my new book chapter (In Press), in Negotiating Digital Citizenship: Control, Contest and Culture edited by Anthony McCosker, Sonja Vivienne and Amelia Johns (Rowman and Littlefield 2016):
Makerspaces have helped frame processes of design, adaptation, and the repair of things and systems—hardware, software, networks, tools, food, currencies, energy, bacteria—as social activities (Sleigh et al., 2015). Makerspaces have also been revealed as sites that encourage self-directed civic practices and the assembling of new civic identities, or DIY citizenship (Nascimento, 2014; Toombs et al., 2014; Kubitschko, 2015; Shea, 2015; Hunsinger and Schrock, 2016). This chapter offers an additional contextual review and further evidence of emergent civic practices linked to makerspaces, focusing attention on peace-building projects in Northern Ireland. It specifically examines the role of design and material engagement in the performance of these ethical and social interventions. The study elucidates how the propagation of alternative thinking and responsible action in Northern Ireland’s makerspaces is challenging normative understandings of civic participation.