Materials Innovation Hub: Connecting Materials Culture to Materials Science

Lead Research Organisation: University College London
Department Name: Mechanical Engineering

Abstract

The development of the silicon chip fifty years ago was the materials science innovation that sparked the information technology revolution. Such new materials do more than transform technology, they change behaviour and shape the urban landscape, from our cities, to our hospitals, to our homes, to our art. Thus, materials are a defining characteristic of society: its history, culture and economic welfare. As a result materiality is one of the central themes of study in every university. However in contemporary universities the scientists involved in making new materials (physicists, chemists, materials scientists) very rarely get involved with those who study the cultural significance and impact of materials (humanities and social scientists), and are often further distanced from those who make things with materials (medics, engineers, architects, designers, artists). This has a serious detrimental effect on the research and teaching culture of universities, and their capacity to engage with the wider world, since many of the important issues of contemporary society, such as health, security, climate change and economic sustainability, require a multi-disciplinary approach. The aim of this research project is to build the Materials Innovation Hub within King's College London whose guiding principle will be that all materials innovation benefits from a system-wide multidisciplinary approach involving the arts, humanities, social sciences, physical sciences and health sciences. The Hub will be a focal point for developing our understanding of how materials, materiality and material culture affect the human realm, be it in the form of a new type of artificial limb, or a new form of human expression. It will be a place of wonder, play and ambitious ideas - a place to initiate innovation and culture change within the university and the UK.

Planned Impact

At present there is almost no relationship between materials scientists and creative industry professionals in the UK. This status quo is not ideal for a number of reasons. Firstly, the creative industries are economically very important. In the UK these industries employ 1.3 million people, generate 112.5 billion p.a., account for 9.1% of the GDP, and are widely acknowledged as being among the most buoyant sectors in the British economy. However they are not playing their full role in determining the focus of publicly-funded materials research. Secondly, the creative industries have a long history of posing provocative problems which in turn drive forward the science agenda; for example the need for materials that transform their properties in response to digital stimuli for virtual touch: such new materials have already impacted the phone industry but could impact architecture, jewellery, and many other aspects of product design. Thirdly, materials have an immense cultural significance and the introduction of new materials by an isolated materials science community holds the prospect of further deepening the rift between scientists and society. Fourthly, the environmental impact and sustainability of materials manufacturing is dependant very much on the social and cultural use of the technology. Thus a more nuanced understanding of materials, materiality and materials culture is urgently needed in the UK. We will create a Materials Innovation Hub which will be the first UK research centre that brings together materials science and materials culture research in the same institution. As the Hub matures it will address the four issues outlined above and this will deliver the following benefits to the UK: Creative Industries - This project will create a Materials Innovation Hub which will give creative companies from across the sector a dedicated place to undertake long-term research, leverage government funding, collaborate on the development of new materials, and raise the national profile of their innovations in this area. Materials Industries - The materials industries will benefit from a steady flow of materials innovation that emerges from the Materials Innovation Hub. The materials library within the Hub will provide a place for these industries to showcase their materials, and so give them greater visibility in the creative industries. Museums - Museums and other organizations within the heritage sector operate at the intersection of materials science and materials culture on a daily basis through their work on the preservation, conservation, curation, and, increasingly, digitisation of objects within their collections. It is expected that many of the Hub's research projects will have a direct impact on these activities. Government Agencies - This project will address questions of how materials research might be applied to specific sectors, such as UK architecture, heritage, design, or craft, and how in turn such findings might be fed back into Government policy-making in these areas. We will facilitate public discussion on these issues, supply leadership, and provide evidence to the UK policy-makers on issues of materials manufacture and usage. Universities - This project will aim to raise the profile of the creative industries among the materials science research and teaching communities as a sector worthy of research and study, and so help the nation's universities compete globally in this rapidly-growing area. The long term impact of the project relies on the longevity of the project within King's and in particular in the Materials Innovation Hub being integrated within the Somerset House cultural precinct that will develop over the next ten years, in which King's is the major academic partner.

Publications

10 25 50

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Description Key achievements of the project were:
- Creating a physical hub (Institute of Making) to promote interdisciplinary working and encourage research activities between departments at UCL on the theme of materials and making.
- Building a membership of 3880 people to date from across UCL, with the following demographic breakdown: female (927), male (1119), no gender declaration (1334), undergraduates (802), postgraduates (1165), academic staff (390), professional services staff (178), physical sciences (1466), arts and humanities (550) and social sciences (205).
- Curating 39 events (research workshops, masterclasses and talks) on a wide variety of themes to build multidisciplinary links between the physical sciences, social sciences and arts and humanities.
- Funding 51 interdisciplinary research projects, involving 141 researchers from 9 of the 10 UCL Faculties.
- Involving 23 undergraduate and postgraduate students as named contributors to those research projects, as well as countless other unnamed students involved in research/teaching crossover activities.
- Instigating an annual Festival of Materials and Making at UCL and holding 8 open days to engage the public in materials and making-related activities at UCL.
- Developing a distinctive method of interdisciplinary working which is beginning to serve as a model for other researchers at UCL and further afield.
Exploitation Route Our experience of bringing together and running a multidisciplinary hub at UCL is of interest to other researchers at UCL, as well as researchers at academic institutions further afield. Researchers at UCL are beginning to draw on our method of working in the development of future 'bridging the gaps' projects. A number of research workshops that have materials and making activities at their centre and a practical, hands-on element have also been instigated at UCL following on from this project, including the Emotions, Transformations and Restorations series and the Material Properties FIGS Forum. We have also been drawing on the experience gained through the Bridging the Gaps project to inform the work of the EU FP7 Light Touch Matters (LTM) consortium (EU FP7-NMP-2012-SME-6). The LTM project aims to bring materials researchers and designers together to develop a new generation of affordable products that use flexible organic light-emitting diode (OLED) and piezoelectric polymer technologies in such a way that the whole product responds to touch by lighting up. In this context, designers are not just using a new material with a set of predetermined physical parameters; they have the opportunity to influence the development of these materials as they emerge. In order for this to be successful, designers need to be able to communicate effectively with materials scientists so that materials can be developed with desired functionalities and properties. There is therefore a need for specialist tools for interdisciplinary translation between materials researchers and designers. We have been able to draw on our experience of running successful hands-on, material-focussed workshops to enhance the dialogue between designers and materials scientists.
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URL http://www.instituteofmaking.org.uk/blog/2014/05/first-year-report
 
Description The main impacts of the Institute of Making and Materials Library have been: - Championing materials and making activities within the research community. - Promoting materials and making to the general public through extensive media coverage and popular public events. - Promoting materials, making, makespaces and materials libraries to industrial collaborators like ARUP, Atkins, AIRBUS, Selex, the Crafts Council and the Royal Academy of Engineering. - Encouraging new multidisciplinary research projects on the theme of materials and making at UCL, and supporting undergraduate student engagement with those research activities. - Encouraging an approach to interdisciplinary dialogue that acknowledges the importance of hands-on engagement with materials and making as part of a successful collaboration. - The development and support of university spin-out ventures that may have an economic impact for the UK.
First Year Of Impact 2011
Sector Aerospace, Defence and Marine,Creative Economy,Education,Electronics,Culture, Heritage, Museums and Collections
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Description How Making interfaces and influences Research
Geographic Reach Multiple continents/international 
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Description Importance of Materials Libraries in Research
Geographic Reach Multiple continents/international 
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URL http://www.instituteofmaking.org.uk/
 
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Department Seventh Framework Programme (FP7)
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Title Materials Library 
Description The Materials Library is a collection of some of the most wondrous materials on earth, gathered from sheds, labs, grottoes and repositories around the world. It is a resource, laboratory, studio, and playground for the curious and material-minded to conduct hands-on research through truly interdisciplinary inquiry and innovation. 
Type Of Material Improvements to research infrastructure 
Year Produced 2006 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact Materials Libraries have become a tool worldwide for connecting materials scientists and materials practitioners from the arts and cultural industries. 
URL http://www.instituteofmaking.org.uk/materials-library
 
Title Research Workshops 
Description The Bridging the Gaps project has given us the opportunity to experiment with the most effective ways to encourage interdisciplinary interactions and conversations. We have observed that discussions stimulated by objects, materials and the making process have the ability to encourage conversations across disciplinary boundaries in a way that a purely verbal conversation cannot. We therefore explored how different combinations of presentations, demonstrations, material explorations, discussions and making tasks contributed to a successful multidisciplinary conversation. We developed a hands-on approach to interdisciplinary dialogue, designed to encourage play with materials as a way of learning about their affordances and engaging with different disciplinary approaches to them. As anthropologist Tim Ingold (2007, 2012) has argued, a hands-on engagement with materials and processes can lend a different kind of understanding of their behavioural qualities than desk-based rumination. As part of our research workshops we challenged researchers to explain their work through object-centred presentations, instead of relying on pre-existing powerpoints aimed at peers in their own disciplines, and each of our research workshops involved a making activities, demonstration or materials handling session, alongside more traditional academic presentations and discussions. Our research workshop themes have included: Radioactive Materials; London Incorporated: the Body and the City; Materials at the Centre; 3D Manufacturing: Promises, Pitfalls and Potential; Making Repairs; Materials Library Meets History of Art; Materials Library Meets Digital Humanities; Materials and Society Conference; Health, Safety and Creativity in Artistic Practice. We also encouraged and supported a number of hands-on workshops led by other researchers, including the 'Ad Hoc' Material Properties reading group on Wax; the Emotions, Transformations and Restorations series (3 workshops); Dinner with Picasso (6 workshops) and 'From Invention to Consumption: Electronic Textiles'. 
Type Of Material Improvements to research infrastructure 
Year Produced 2011 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact These research events have brought together a multidisciplinary group of researchers who are interested in materials and making-related research. These relationships are being formalised through postgraduate studentships, mailing lists (e.g. https://www.jiscmail.ac.uk/cgi-bin/webadmin?A0=MATERIAL-MATTERS), websites (e.g. http://emotionstransformationsrestorations.wordpress.com), successful funding applications (Leverhulme and UCL Grand Challenges) and incipient funding applications (for a 'Digital Crafting Network', a 'Health, Safety and Creativity Network', a 'Materials and Society Network' and a 'Centre for Research and Teaching on Materials, Objects, and Collections'). Two of our research events also inspired attendees to write open access articles, available here: http://stevenconnor.com/senstance.html http://aeon.co/magazine/culture/philip-ball-art-of-repair/ 
URL http://www.instituteofmaking.org.uk/blog/2014/05/first-year-report
 
Title Small Research Grants 
Description These small pots of funding were made available to multidisciplinary groups of researchers at UCL with the aim of fostering new and incipient research collaborations between the physical sciences, social sciences and arts and humanities. We supported 16 small research projects, involving 57 researchers from numerous UCL and KCL departments. A full list of the project titles, researchers and collaborating departments ca be found in our annual report (URL below). 
Type Of Material Improvements to research infrastructure 
Year Produced 2013 
Provided To Others? Yes  
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URL http://www.instituteofmaking.org.uk/blog/2014/05/first-year-report
 
Title Summer studentships: research/teaching interaction 
Description The Institute of Making is not aligned with any one course and no formal teaching goes on in the space, but a great deal of informal learning and teaching happens here. We have gone to great lengths to curate the space itself in a way that encourages students, staff and researchers to interact with each other whilst using the equipment and library. By having members from diverse backgrounds and disciplines sharing the same space, they can, and do, learn from each other. This happens organically when undergraduates learn about the practice of research by working in the same space and using the same equipment as PhD students, postdocs and staff. Equally, researchers sometimes learn about making techniques from their students. Our summer studentship scheme has played a crucial role in developing teaching-research interaction; they funded an undergraduate student to do interdisciplinary research over the summer through a collaboration between two different departments. A full list of the project titles, collaborators and departments can be found in our annual report (URL below). 
Type Of Material Improvements to research infrastructure 
Year Produced 2012 
Provided To Others? Yes  
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URL http://www.instituteofmaking.org.uk/blog/2014/05/first-year-report
 
Title The Institute of Making 
Description The Institute of Making contains a materials library and a workshop. The materials library contains more than a thousand material samples. Some are exotic, such as aerogel, uranium glass or self-healing concrete, but the vast majority are the materials used in everyday practice and in manufacturing around the world. Our Institute also contains a fully kitted-out workshop containing a laser cutter, milling machine, kiln, kitchen, 3D printer, sewing machines etc. We do not have every tool, but we but we aim to provide a representative sample of different making techniques. Our aim is to create a workshop where you use the materials discovered in the library to prototype ideas or explore how they behave when processed in different ways to better understand their affordances. Together, these two resources and the connection between them create the right environment where complex problems that sit outside the traditional boundaries of any one discipline can be addressed. The hands-on testing of existing material objects and processes, an exploration of the Materials Library and the construction of prototypes all become part of the thinking process. This is problem-solving by doing: not because theory is irrelevant to tackling complex problems, but because making stuff stimulates a different set of ideas and a creative approach. 
Type Of Material Improvements to research infrastructure 
Year Produced 2013 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact A fundamental change in the materials research culture of the UK, and increasingly internationally, to focus as much on hands-on experimentation as a method of building interdisciplinary research teams and projects. 
URL http://www.instituteofmaking.org.uk
 
Title Materials Library Database 
Description Users can digitally explore the Materials Library collection anywhere in the world, and can use this database as a tool for enabling directed or serendipitous exploration of the collection when in the Institute of Making. The content is multiply-authored by chemists, artists, anthropologists, designers, historians and materials scientists to give a broad view of the social, economic and environmental importance of materials, both historically and to contemporary society. 
Type Of Material Database/Collection of data 
Year Produced 2014 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact This database is a tool that our 3880 members can use to navigate our collection whilst in the Materials Library, but perhaps most importantly it allows the 4378 interested individuals, students, teachers, designers, and researchers that subscribe to our mailing list from outside the University to access information about materials and the made world remotely. 
URL http://www.instituteofmaking.org.uk/materials-library
 
Title Spectral Library of Impervious Urban Materials 
Description The radiative response of impervious urban materials is a highly influential surface property, due to its impacts on the radiation balance of incoming and outgoing long- and short-wave fluxes. Information about the material composition can be determined with data resolved to the wavelength level. Spectral reflectance in the visible- to short-wave infrared (VIS-SWIR) region is widely used in remote sensing-based land cover classification and spectral long-wave infrared (LWIR) emissivity is required for the observation of surface temperatures. The Spectral Library of impervious Urban Materials (SLUM) available from the London Urban Micromet data Archive (LUMA) includes LWIR emissivity spectra of 74 samples of impervious surfaces derived using measurements made by a portable Fourier Transform InfraRed (FTIR) spectrometer and matching short-wave reflectance spectra observed for each urban sample. 
Type Of Material Database/Collection of data 
Year Produced 2014 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact Details of the importance of this database for research into urban surface properties and urban climate conditions can be found in this paper: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0924271614001233 
URL http://www.met.reading.ac.uk/micromet/LUMA/SLUM.html
 
Title Design-led Materials Research MOOC 
Description A on-line course taking users through a case-study in design-led materials research. 
Type Of Technology Webtool/Application 
Year Produced 2016 
Impact Free - worldwide. 
URL http://www.instituteofmaking.org.uk/research/online-course
 
Title Introduction to Steel MOOC 
Description This course is an introduction to steel, exploring its history and cultural context, where it comes from, how it works, why we use so much of it, and how we might use it in the future. The following concepts will be covered: The basics of steel smelting The properties of steel and their origins Its relationship with society The sustainability of a world underpinned by steel The course is delivered in a lively manner using everyday examples, demonstrations, and film footage of steel making. 
Type Of Technology Webtool/Application 
Year Produced 2015 
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URL https://www.edx.org/course/introduction-steel-tenarisuniversity-steel101x#.VSbjnReaQ1g
 
Company Name Bentham 3D Limited 
Description As part of his third year project, Mechanical Engineering student and Makespace member James Cook developed a technology for 3D printing bespoke bicycle helmets. The idea is that helmets of the future will be made-to-measure using 3D scans of the customer's head, and then printed to order. The technology James is developing is based on lightweight honeycomb structures developed for the aerospace industry. These are strong, stiff, and light but can easily crumple to absorb impact forces. By 3D printing these structures, not only does the helmet become tailored to the user, but it can be customised for them too, allowing them to optimise comfort, weight, breathability, and most crucially the protection against different impact modes. 
Year Established 2014 
Impact Cycle head injuries typically involve not just direct forces to the skull but also rotational forces too. These rotational forces can cause severe brain bruising and permanent damage, but are not mitigated against in current EPS bicycle helmets. James' design allows for rotational elements within the helmet honeycomb mechanism to be incorporated to absorb these rotational forces. Such mechanisms are expensive to incorporate in normal bicycle helmets (eg. MIPS), but with 3D printing this complexity comes for free. James' prototypes attracted attention from the venture capital world; he found a business partner, and with help from UCL Advances he has started a company called Bentham 3D and has won a UCL Bright Ideas Award of £15,000 to develop the business.
Website http://www.bentham3d.co.uk
 
Company Name Bento.Lab (Bento.Bioworks) 
Description Bento·lab is a small scale personal laboratory that enables scientists, DIY biologists, artists and all curious minds to engage with biology and biotechnology in any place and at any time. The developers are a group of biology and citizen science enthusiasts who met through the Institute of Making's Makespace and the iGEM 2013 World championship. They started the development of what was originally called the 'Darwin Toolbox' in 2013 in the Makespace, and it has since been featured on W.I.R.E.D. and at the Edinburgh Science Festival 2014, and the Rome Makerfaire 2013. The lab will soon be on show at the BIO·FICTION Science Art Film Festival and iGEM 2014 World Jamboree. 
Year Established 2014 
Impact This small, portable lab in a box allows for safe and affordable access to biotechnology for scientists, DIY biologists, artists and other curious minds to engage with.
Website http://darwintoolbox.com
 
Description Films about startlite 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact A series of films about starlet for BBC Online
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL https://www.bbc.com/reel/playlist/searching-for-starlite?vpid=p06llnj7
 
Description BBC Radio 4 PM Programme 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact Several appearances to discuss plastic waste issues
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b006qskw
 
Description BBC Radio 4 Start The Week: Materials Culture 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact We discussed for 45 minutes the relationship between politics, art, and materials science and engineering in materials culture.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b06bgbvx
 
Description BBC Radio 4 Today Prorgamme: Defending Art History A-Level 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact Interviewed on the BBC Radio 4's Today Programme about the proposed closure of Art History A-Level. They were interested in the views of Engineers like me. I argued for a broad curriculum including art history as vital for modern engineering education.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b07zv3gf
 
Description BBC website: how to make a perfect cup of tea 
Form Of Engagement Activity Engagement focused website, blog or social media channel
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Interactive website with video content
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL http://www.bbc.co.uk/guides/zsbv9qt
 
Description Cheltenham Science Festival 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Talk on the Science of Chips
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Cheltenham Science Festival 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Talks on drones, plastic waste and the science of gin
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL https://www.cheltenhamfestivals.com
 
Description Contributor to BBC Radio 4 news and cultural programmes 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact 1. BBC Radio 4 - The Science of Dr Seuss - Contributor - http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b085z058?ns_mchannel=social& - 2nd Jan 2017

2. BBC Radio 4 - Print Me A New Body - Contributor - - 5th June 2017 - BBC Radio 4 - http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b08rq6dl

3. BBC Radio 4 - The Science of Cake - Contributor - http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/1pSjKGxlHPVkFYvzp34CVjM/how-science-can-help-you-bake-the-perfect-sponge-cake - 25th Sept 2017

4. BBC Radio 4 Today Programme - The Science of Crisp Packets - Contributor -- http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p05qbsq8 - 7th Dec 2017

5. BBC Radio 4 PM Programme - The Problem with Plastics - Contributor - 17th, 18th and 19th 2018 Jan http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b006qskw
6. BBC World Service Newshour Programme 17th Jan 2018: - The Problem with Plastics - Contributor : http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/w172vr1kyqhhhfs

7. BBC Radio 4 - A Good Read - 24th Feb 2018 - Contributor: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b09snj94
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description Financial Times article 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact Financial Times article on self-repairing cities work
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL https://www.ft.com/content/9870fa7a-314d-11e8-b5bf-23cb17fd1498
 
Description GCSE Science Live Events 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Talks to school children in Bristol, Birmingham and Manchester organised by GCSE Science Live
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016,2017
URL http://gcsesciencelive.net/
 
Description GCSE Science Live Events 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Talks at Oxford & London organised by GCSE Science Live
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL http://gcsesciencelive.net/
 
Description Institute of Making - Research Workshops and Events 2013/2014 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Study participants or study members
Results and Impact The 2013-2014 series of research workshops (listed below) engaged researchers from multiple disciplines together for the day to explore common materials and making-related research interests. These workshops typically gather together a range of speakers on a theme that spans disciplines, giving an idea of the breadth and wealth of materials and making research. The purpose of these days is explicitly to encourage new interdisciplinary research projects that draw on the expertise we have
at UCL, as well as in the Institute's wider community of researchers, makers and manufacturers.
Materials at the Centre, April 2013
3D Manufacturing, October 2013
Art History Forum, October 2013
Digital Humanities Forum, November 2013
Making Repairs, February 2014
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013,2014
 
Description Institute of Making - Research Workshops and Events 2014/2015 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Study participants or study members
Results and Impact The Institute of Making curated 14 research workshops and events in 2014-2015, reaching participants both within and outside of UCL's research community. The series of research workshops (listed below) engaged researchers from multiple disciplines together for the day to explore common materials and making-related research interests. These workshops typically gather together a range of speakers on a theme that spans disciplines, giving an idea of the breadth and wealth of materials and making research. The purpose of these days is explicitly to encourage new interdisciplinary research projects that draw on the expertise we have at UCL, as well as in the Institute's wider community of researchers, makers and manufacturers.
Dinner with Picasso: The Unspoken Language of Food, March 2014
Dinner with Picasso: Cheese - Enbracing Entropy, March 2014
Dinner with Picasso: Five Ways with Algae, March 2014
Dinner with Picasso: Green Eggs and Ham, April 2014
Materials Histories: Emotions, April 2014
Dinner with Picasso: An Oulipean Wine-Tasting, May 2014
Materials Histories: Restorations, May 2014
Materials and Society Conference, June 2014
E Fibre: Material Engagement, July 2014
Pop up Pop up, September 2014
Dinner with Picasso: Final Workshop, September 2014
Health, Safety and Creativity, October 2014
Pyrotechnics with Matthew Tosh, December 2014
Hidden Histories of Things, January 2015
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014,2015
 
Description Institute of Making - Research Workshops and Events 2015/2016 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Study participants or study members
Results and Impact The 2015-2016 series of research workshops (listed below) engaged researchers from multiple disciplines together for the day to explore common materials and making-related research interests. These workshops typically gather together a range of speakers on a theme that spans disciplines, giving an idea of the breadth and wealth of materials and making research. The purpose of these days is explicitly to encourage new interdisciplinary research projects that draw on the expertise we have at UCL, as well as in the Institute's wider community of researchers, makers and manufacturers.

Stone as a Material, March 2015
Glass Sponges, November 2015
Exploring Curious Materials, December 2015
Open AFT/LEGO2NANO, December 2015
Engineers Save Lives, January 2016
Hands on Learning, February 2016
Co-Lab Biomaterials, February 2016
Co-Lab Biomaterials, February 2016
Design-Led Materials Finale, March 2016
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015,2016
 
Description Institute of Making - Research Workshops and Events 2016/2017 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact 18th April, 2016. Akins Away Day. (Corporate).
28th April, 2016. Materials Library Evening. (Library) Public event.
4th May, 2016. Concrete with Leigh Cameron. (Masterclass) Public event.
9th May, 2016. Copper Spoon Making. (Masterclass) Public event.
24th May, 2016. Hands of X, Dundee. (Research event)
6th June, 2016. Hands of X, London. (Research event)
15th June, 2016. Hands of X, Glasgow. (Research event)
21st June, 2016. Wooden Whistle Masterclass. (Festival of Stu )
21st June, 2016. Morning - Felt Ball and 3D Hand Embroidery Masterclass. (Festival of Stu )
21st June, 2016. Morning - Chair Caning Masterclass. (Festival of Stu )
21st June, 2016. Dustpan and Brush Masterclass. (Festival of Stu )
21st June, 2016. Afternoon - Felt Ball and 3D Hand Embroidery Masterclass. (Festival of Stu )
21st June, 2016. Afternoon - Chair Caning Masterclass. (Festival of Stu )
22nd June, 2016. Laminate Wood Forming Masterclass. (Festival of Stu )
22nd June, 2016. Morning - Experimental Fabric Colouring Masterclass. (Festival of Stu ) 22nd June, 2016. Afternoon - Experimental Fabric Colouring Masterclass (Festival of Stu ) 22nd June, 2016. Performing Matter - Greatest Hit and New Findings. (Festival of Stu )
23rd June, 2016. Morning - Experimental Pewter Casting Masterclass. (Festival of Stu ) 23rd June, 2016. Morning - Fish Printing Masterclass. (Festival of Stu )
23rd June, 2016. Morning - Plant Moisture Sensor Masterclass. (Festival of Stu )
23rd June, 2016. Afternoon - Experimental Pewter Casting Masterclass. (Festival of Stu ) 23rd June, 2016. Afternoon - Fish Printing Masterclass. (Festival of Stu )
23rd June, 2016. Afternoon - Plant Moisture Sensor Masterclass. (Festival of Stu ) 24th June, 2016. Morning - Concrete Masterclass. (Festival of Stu )
24th June, 2016. Sensors Masterclass. (Festival of Stu )
24th June, 2016. Afternoon - Concrete Masterclass. (Festival of Stu )
25th June, 2016. Festival of Stu . (Open day)
13th July, 2016. Failure Non-Event. (Research Hub event)
26th July, 2016. Object-based and Creative Methods for Communicating Emotions. (Research event).
18th July - 18th August, 2016. Beer Brewing. (Masterclass) Member event.
26th July, 2016. Touching Emotions: Object-based and Creative Methods for Communicating Emotions. (Research event) Public event.
16th August, 2016. Day in the woods with Geo rey Fisher. (Masterclass) Member event. 17th September, 2016. Cutlery Design Challenge. (Exhibition) Public and members challenge.
20th September - 22nd January, 2017. Victorians Decoded: Art and Telegraphy. (Research Hub event)
4th - 7th October, 2016. UCL Lunchtime Looks. (Open to all UCL).
4th - 7th October, 2016. Jeremy Atkinson - Clog Maker. (Maker in Residence).
28th October, 2016. Sand Casting with Silver. (Masterclass) Member event.
28th October, 2016. Sand Casting with Silver. (Masterclass) Public event.
5th November, 2016. Geology. (Open day) Public event.
23rd November, 2016. Museums on Prescription. (Outreach).
28th November, 2016. Co-Lab. (Research hub event).
5th December, 2016. Introduction to pattern cutting with Juliana Sissons. (Masterclass) Member event.
5th December, 2016. Interpreting of a shop-bought pattern with Juliana Sissons. (Masterclass) Member event.
19th December, 2016. Make Merry. (Workshop) Member event.
20th - 21st January, 2017. Coding & Representation Conference. (Research Hub event)
13th February, 2017. Stool in a day. (Masterclass) Member event.
20th February, 2017. Introduction to the art of Kintsugi. (Masterclass) Member event.
24th February, 2017. Materials Library talk with Mark Miodownik. (Library) Public event. 25th February, 2017. Design inclusive workshop. (Outreach)
27th February, 2017. Morning - Glass working. (Masterclass) Member event.
27th February, 2017. Afternoon - Glass working. (Masterclass) Member event.
11th March, 2017. 4th Birthday. (Open day) Public event.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016,2017
 
Description Institute of Making Member Masterclasses 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact Our masterclass programme inspires undergraduate students, postgraduate students, academic staff and professional services staff at UCL to explore new areas of interest, acquire new skills, and engage with experts in diverse fields of materials research and making. Events have included masterclasses in blacksmithing, flintknapping and an introduction to animatronics, for example. These activities have enabled those attending to gain an insight into the practice and philosophy of expert makers and a chance to discuss broader issues around materials and making.

These introductory masterclasses open up research and making opportunities to our members. They have encouraged those new to materials and making to become more involved in other activities at the Institute of Making, including research events, interdisciplinary collaborations, citizen science projects and exploratory making activities. They have also encouraged materials experts and experienced makers to become involved in areas of research and practice outside their normal remit.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013,2014
URL http://www.instituteofmaking.org.uk/events
 
Description Institute of Making Public Events 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact We organised several different kinds of public event, ranging from talks and masterclasses run by expert makers for small groups to large scale public extravaganzas. Masterclasses and talks for the public included flintknapping with archaeologist Karl Lee, a 'smell walk' with Dr Victoria Henshaw and 'bodging' and repairing with designer Jasleen Kaur, for example. During our large open days we threw wide the doors of the Makespace and the Materials Library to the public and organised various making activities designed to appeal to seasoned makers, first-time tinkerers and families alike, and curated a themed selection of materials for visitors to explore in the Materials Library. Themes have included 'Plastic Fantastic', 'Luminescence' and 'Foam', for example. We have had many return visitors at these public open days, and the public engagement programme has inspired people to explore new areas of interest, acquire new skills, and engage with experts in diverse fields of materials research and making. For a full list of events up until March 2014, see our annual report: http://www.instituteofmaking.org.uk/blog/2014/05/first-year-report and for events since then, see the URL below.

Between 2013 and 2014 we hosted eight public open days at UCL with a total attendance of approximately 3500 including a high representation from families and children. Through these events the public get both a taste of the Makespace and Materials Library, and a chance to meet and interact with our wonderful and knowledgeable community of members. This public programme is extremely popular, with many events being booked up in less than five minutes of being released and with extensive waiting lists forming. For example, 1156 people applied to attend Roja Dove: An Olfactory Experience, for which there were only 40 spaces available. We instigated the first Festival of Materials and Making at King's College, and have instituted an annual Festival of Stuff at UCL.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2011,2012,2013,2014
URL http://www.instituteofmaking.org.uk/events
 
Description Manchester Science Festival 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Debate on plastic waste
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL https://www.manchestersciencefestival.com
 
Description Media Coverage 
Form Of Engagement Activity A magazine, newsletter or online publication
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Media coverage of the Institute of Making and Materials Library includes:
Institute of Making Opens at UCL. Wild Culture, 12th March 2013. Available at: http://www.wildculture.com/article/institute-making-opensucl/1109.
Institute of Making: To Help us Reconnect with 'Stuff'. Telegraph, 1st April 2013. Available at: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/art/artnews/9964950/Institute-of-Making-to-help-us-reconnect-with-stuff.html. The Institute of Making. Architectural Association Conversations, 28th January 2014. Available at: ttp://conversations.aaschool.ac.uk/theinstituteof-making/
Materials Library In Pictures: Magic Materials. Wired Magazine, 5th November 2012. Available at: http://www.wired.co.uk/magazine/archive/2012/10/features/magic-materials
UCL Institute of Making's Cabinet of Curiosities. Times Higher Education, 18th April 2013. Available at: http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/news/ucl-institute-of-makings-cabinet-of-curiosities/2003213.article
Inside the Materials Library, The Telegraph, 22nd April 2013. Available at: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/10000305/Inside-the-Materials-Library.html
College Students Build a Homemade Low-Cost LEGO Microscope. People's Daily, 9th July 2013. Available at: http://ning.it/15GdL7q
Nano-Scale Microscope Made from LEGO Building Blocks. Beijing Daily, 9th July 2013. Available at: http://ning.it/15I214m

The Institute of Making and its team have gained a public profile as a champion of making and materials, promoting it through social media (eg.
Web, Twitter, Facebook) many newspaper articles (eg. Guardian, The Times, Wired Magazine) and TV and radio programmes (eg. ITV's This Morning, BBC2's Dara O'Briain's Science Club, BBC Radio 4's Any Questions). As a result of this profile and our public engagement activities we have been approached by numerous teachers, researchers, makers and makespaces, manufacturing companies and institutional bodies, thereby raising the profile of materials and making at a national and international level.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013,2014
URL http://www.instituteofmaking.org.uk/blog/2014/05/first-year-report
 
Description Museum Workshops: How Can 3D Printing Shape Engagement With Museum Objects? 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Small research grant winners Nick Booth (Museums and Public Engagement) and Dr Claire Ross (Centre for Digital Humanities) organised two museum workshops at the Grant Museum and Sidmouth Science Festival (Sidmouth Museum) to introduce museum audiences to their work into how 3D printing could add to engagement with museum objects.

As part of these workshops the team interacted with 42 members of the public to explain the potential and importance of 3D manufacturing techniques in a museological context.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description Pop Up Pop Up 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Pop Up Pop Up was a project by small research grant winner Dr Hilary Powell, which involved the public production of a pop-up book (Legend: An A-Z of the Lea Valley) in an industrial building in Stratford, East London. The book was designed in collaboration with numerous practitioners, including the London Centre for Book Arts and Calverts Cooperative Press. A team of 'pop-up apprentices' were recruited to help with the production of the books, many of whom were Institute of Making members from a range of UCL departments (Slade, Life Sciences, Engineering). The book charts an imaginative history of this changing area of the Lea Valley, and the project returned skilled craft and cultural production to a site of former manufacturing and invention. Photos of the book in production can be seen here: https://twitter.com/HilarySPowell/media

The pop-up apprentices all received coaching in paper engineering, bookbinding and printing techniques, as well as copy of the book at the end of the event. The book itself was Winner of the Birgit Skiold Award as part of the London Art Book Fair at the Whitechapel Gallery (September 2014). It was also acquired by the Victorian and Albert National Art Library and Saison Poetry Library, where it will be featuring in their New Acquisitions open day display on Sunday 16th November 2014. It will also be featuring in the Moveable Book Society's January 2015 newsletter.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://popuppopup.net
 
Description Public Talks 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact 1. Cheltenham Science Festival, June 25,000 visitor - https://www.cheltenhamfestivals.com/science/ - June 2017

2. New Scientist Live - Sept 30,000 visitors - https://live.newscientist.com/ - 22nd Sept 2017

3. IET Engineering Festival -http://www.engfest.org/ - 17th Oct 2017

4. Three Physics in Action talks to 800 A-level student held in London - - Nov, Dec 2017 & March 2018
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017,2018
 
Description Radio Programme 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Start the Week on Ice
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m0001qh3
 
Description Radio Programme - Science of Dr Seuss 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Contributor to radio programme - on the science of non-newtonian liquids.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description Radio Series 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact Three part radio series on plastic waste called Plastic Fantastic for BBC Radio 4, rebroadcast on BBC World Service
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0b2jg2m
 
Description Stoke Lunar Lecture 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Public talk with MP for Stoke on Trent Tristram Hunt - for Lunar Society in preparation for City of Culture 2021 bid.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description UCLoo Festival: 'Meet the Makers' evening and 'Makeathon' 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact The UCLoo Festival was a public series of events and exhbitions exploring sustainable solutions to the global sanitation crisis, held at UCL in November 2013. The Festival was organised by Dr Sarah Bell (Civil Engineering), Dr Barbara Penner (Bartlett School of Architecture) and Dr Tse-Hui The (Bartlett School of Planning), and the Institute of Making funded and hosted a 'Make-a-thon' that allowed students to design and make a new toilet, with prototypes being exhibited to the public in the North Lodge at UCL. This included a 'Meet the Makers' evening that kickstarted the celebrations, in which 3 innovative toilet systems were showcased to inspire the makers: Loowatt's waterless energy-generating toilet system, Tiger toilet's worm-composting dry toilet and Envirolet's vacuum-flush and composting loos. Students then had 2 weeks to design and make their new designs to promote sustainable sanitation.

The UCLoo team won 'Public Event of the Year' at the inaugural UCL Communications and Culture Awards. They also appeared on BBC Radio 4's Costing the Earth programme, talking about the project: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b03ts4ff
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
URL https://twitter.com/UCLooFestival
 
Description UK Plastic Pact Launch (Host) 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact I hosted the Launch of the UK Plastic Pact -
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL http://www.wrap.org.uk/content/the-uk-plastics-pact
 
Description University of Chester Christams Lecture 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Materials Science and Engineering schools talk.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016