MakerSpace 2.0

Look what we are helping with

(as partners on an IMLS grant to Westport Library)

What is a MakerSpace?

The MakerSpace in The Great Hall is a place for people to connect and create. The concept originated from the realization that the Library should provide experiences that take people from imagination to actual production. The Maker movement is a response to a lengthy period of history in which innovation and invention were reserved for specialists. As more individuals take on the role of inventor, Maker Faires™ and Spaces have appeared all over the country and the world. The Maker movement is also regarded as a potential economic engine as more entrepreneurs emerge and thrive.


Why is the Library doing this?

Libraries have always adapted to meet the needs of the people they serve. The Westport Library has been evolving into a community hub for many different kinds of learning experiences, and some time ago the concept of providing space for creation and production took hold. Members of the community proposed the idea of a Maker Faire, and the result was a Library partnership with CLASP Homes to produce Connecticut's first Mini Maker Faire in the spring of 2012, which attracted over 2,200 people. The establishment of a MakerSpace was a natural continuation of a clear interest in the Maker movement. The MakerSpace is where people can create content as well as also consume it--an incubator for ideas and entrepreneurship.

As a partner, Southern’s ILS Department is creating learning modules and an institute on

MakerSpace 2.0: Retinkering Libraries

[tentative  course number: ILS 599 80/ILS 498 80; 3 credits]   

[tentative dates: August 17-23, 2014]

  [Sunday 1-5; M-F 10-4; Saturday 9-12]  


Registration Opens March 20, 2014, for the institute. Look for the announcement of scholarships to attend the institute. 

ILS faculty members are donating time and expertise to manage the evaluation component of the grant. 

ILS faculty members are donating time and expertise to develop learning modules for courses and a three-credit institute on MakerSpace and Library to be offered this summer.

Faculty Participants include:

          Prof. Mary E. Brown

          Prof. Elsie Okobi

          Prof. Arlene Bielefield