Guest Blogger: Jeroen de Boer, programme manager innovation, Library Service Fryslân
Since September 2013, the Library Service Fryslân has a FryskLab at its disposition, a bookmobile that contains a FabLab (fabrication laboratory). The basis for this project is the sharing of knowledge and meeting. Joining up with what is known as the maker movement in our view was the way to accomplish a local ambition: to boost the sharing of knowledge in Friesland and with that confront a number of local challenges.
In this way, FryskLab is just as much about library innovation as about maker culture. And about mobility in a rural area. This, incidentally, is not unfamiliar. The first Dutch bookmobile operated in Friesland and was primarily intended to allow people to read. With FryskLab we are doing the same thing 70 years later, but we transform from literacy to digital literacy. It is important that we not only teach children how technology works, but also make them realize why this is important for them. Or at least give them something that they can work on themselves. Creativity is first and foremost in this.
An extra challenge is embedding this in the library itself. To this end, inspired by our Swedish colleague Ake Nygren, we developed a workshop to bring librarians into contact with digital literacy and maker culture.
On 18 and 19 October, we presented this at the European Parliament in Brussels, as part of the Europe Code Week.
Our proposal met with many positive responses, among others by Her Royal Highness Princess Laurentien and by Tibor Navracsics, European Commissioner of Education, Culture, Youth and Sport. A set of ten Maker Boxes, assembled by us, was presented to ten European Members of Parliament, who in turn will present them to a library in their country of origin.
Because, as expressed by Cory Doctorow: “Damn right libraries shouldn’t be book-lined Internet cafes. They should be book-lined, computer-filled information-dojos where communities come together to teach each other black-belt information literacy, where initiates work alongside noviates to show them how to master the tools of the networked age from the bare metal up.”
Listen to this interview with Jeroen de Boer from FryskLab – Library Service Fryslân who brought the FryskLab bus to the EMEA Regional Council Meeting 2015 in Florence, Italy. In this short video, Jeroen talks about FabLabs and makerspaces and the importance of making.
Images on Flickr