Social communities of design and makers and their impact on learning

Norman Gwangwava*, Albert U. Ude, Enoch N. Ogunmuyiwa, Richard Addo-Tenkorang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


The past two decades have seen a rapid growth in the Maker communities and Communities of Enquiry. Unlike social media, these communities have a unique goal of sharing special skills as well as enquiring about special knowledge areas. Advancements in web technologies and models of delivery, in particular, cloud computing (CC), enables the communities to thrive virtually. The authors focus on the technocratic communities interested in designing and making things. These are also known as hobbyists or hackers, in their respective scientific or engineering disciplines. Various online platforms continue to surface, modelled around the Maker concept. The article scrutinizes the value and impact of these communities in learning. A new model for inspiring innovation in knowledge-based economies and building communities of industry and end-user ready product maker is presented and discussed.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of E-Entrepreneurship and Innovation
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)42-61
Number of pages20
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2018


  • Cloud Computing
  • Community of Enquiry
  • DIY
  • Fab Lab
  • Hacker
  • Hackerspace
  • Hobbyists
  • Maker
  • Makerspace
  • Open Design and Manufacturing (ODM)
  • Open-source
  • Social Networking
  • Virtual Communities


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