Maker Faire Rome – The European Edition: a collaborative platform



Policy areas

Organisation name Innova Camera, Special Agency of Rome Chamber of Commerce

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Contact person: Massimiliano Colella

Maker Faire Rome, as a collaborative platform, holds the potential to transform entrepreneurship by acting as an intermediary for organising valuable creations. The project starts from the idea that communities can produce innovative solutions to address the needs and challenges at the local, regional, national and international levels.

Maker Faire was born as an all-ages gathering of tech and innovation enthusiasts, crafters, educators, tinkerers, hobbyists, engineers, science clubs, authors, artists, students, academia and commercial exhibitors. Maker Faire Rome encourages innovation through the sharing of ideas. The general framework of such a goal contains multiple elements, such as creating a widespread culture of innovation, enabling the conditions for growth of an extended innovation ecosystem. It offers businesses in the pre-market phase a quality ecosystem to validate their products or services.

Maker Faire Rome also facilitates meetings and exchanges of knowledge, innovation and sustainable practices; likewise, it encourages the creation of programmes and tools intended to facilitate the digital transformation within SMEs. Overall, the project increases SMEs’ competitiveness in international markets, by supporting the adoption of open innovation approaches as a starting point to grow an innovation mindset within SME-supporting organisations (trade associations, companies and other public bodies).

To do so, Maker Faire Rome organised an on-site global event, where multiple organisations from Europe gathered to exchange best practices of innovation. The team also created a digital platform that includes a set of tools such as the possibility to customise a virtual booth or a virtual space, a broadcasting live channel with a television format as well as live seminars and webinar. The platform is used to deliver internal and external open innovation formats (hackathons, design sprint, design jams, workshops).

Furthermore, the team organises B2B and B2C events such as seminars, workshops and conferences. The events run throughout the year and cover some of the most creative inventions and trends that have the potential to become useful creations. Such events are aimed at disseminating information and to create powerful storytelling around the new creations. The events range from healthcare to the circular economy, from data-driven innovation to smart mobility and more. Additionally, Maker Faire Rome created a lifelong learning platform, Maker Learn, fostering informal learning on digital and tech skills.

Since then, Maker Faire Rome supported multiple innovative models that have the potential to shape new markets, revive localised manufacturing and production, and achieve wider sustainable transformations in the light of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals. Currently, all its digital platforms are open for entrepreneurs to develop their skills and learn the best practices in innovation. Additionally, the team plans to create many other editions of the Maker Faire Rome, and local events such as seminars and conferences.

Figures from the 2019 On-site Edition

  • total number of participants reached during the seven on-site editions of Maker Faire Rome: over 640 000 attendees;
  • attendees in 2019: over 100 000;
  • students participating during the Educational Day: 27 000;
  • talks, conferences and workshops: 391;
  • projects exhibited: 700;
  • countries represented: 40;
  • university and research centres attended (also international): 87;
  • schools attended (also international): 40.

Figures from the 2020 Digital Edition

  • unique visitors (streaming) – over 100 000;
  • live TV – 27 hours;
  • connections from Italy and abroad – 90;
  • television crews – 33.

A total of 33 connected television crews from all over Europe told stories of innovation, widespread, open and shared, with 90 connections and over 27 hours of live television.

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