There is more than one way to get involved in the e-NABLE Alliance activities.  Ivan Owen was very clear from the beginning that e-NABLE was about more than collaborating with need knowers and gifting 3D printed arms and hands. Because of that we value people of all ages, interests and abilities as contributors in our collaborative work:

  • Translators and readers/editor who verify that translations are correct.
  • Ilustrators, graphic artists, data analysts and data visualization experts.
  • Educators to facilitate exchanges about using service learning and using e-NABLE to teach across the curriculum.
  • Mentors and young professionals to advice on projects and to participate in career days, so that the community nurtures emerging interests and fosters vocational exploration.
  • Advocates to promote a culture of safety.
  • Boosters and ambassadors to encourage people in the community and to engage allies and others outside our ecosystem.
  • Media mavens, writers and communicators to help the community document and share authentically, in a spirit of learning, repeatable science, solutions journalism and as a trusted, compassionate witness to challenges, moments of failure and recollected trauma.
  • Athletes, gamers, gardeners, artists and musicians - everyone who can promote the human rights to play, expression, and discovery that make every device important.
  • Subject-matter experts - including children - able to share how they do things that others want to explore.
  • Event planners - help the community celebrate and learn what it is capable of.

Why are there so many more interest groups and activities in the e-NABLE Alliance?

Interest groups foster the growth and sustainability of the people and places engaged in e-NABLE projects.

  • When we found that medical volunteers did not have electricity long enough to 3D print the necessary parts, we started experimenting with renewable energy.
  • When we found out that there are not enough people going into the field of orthotics and prosthetics, we started encouraging young investigators and emerging scientists.
  • When we witnessed the lack of diversity among entrepreneurs, innovators, engineers, manufacturers and technology integrators, we realized that underserved people are missing from the future workforce. They can develop resilience, network and leverage the skills and interests they develop in our supportive ecosystem. With that boost they will advance our access to technology, training and designs during their careers. Our families and neighborhoods will also benefit from the creation of accessible jobs, training, and inclusive communities that foster independent living.

We want to support each of you in recognizing the sentinal alert that each request raises.

Each device is going to interrupt your day to witness ways that people and communities are underserved. Every stakeholder is going to feel challenged by collaborative processes.

  • What caused someone to need an assistive device? What are their functional, quantitative and qualitative goals? Are they required to give up their data or digital identity to get a device or participate in the group?
  • Why are people unable to make them locally? Will supply chains give other areas equal access to tools, utilities and materials?
  • Are women and girls and ethnic minorities equally safe? Is anyone at risk of being bullied or unsupported in keeping their professional oaths?
  • How can our collaboration be an opportunity for everyone to gain knowledge, experience and access?

And key questions addressing resilience:

  • Are we using the best practices of science?
  • Do we have fair expectations about the technology we use?
  • Is our solution repeatable, sustainable, scalable?
  • What role can you play in making the next hand better than this one?
  • Are candidates for devices becoming self advocates?
  • Are self-advocates becoming effective advocates?
  • Are experts becoming mentors?
  • Are innovators becoming entrepreneurs?
  • How can we advance the community and help someone else?

If every e-NABLE open source device is part of collaborative research outside the commerce stream, how do we preserve recognition of intellectual property and create avenues of sustainability for people and their maker/micromanufacturing spaces?

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