Programme VULCA

Today, it’s awesome.
We can access to (almost) any knowledge (when) we want with internet. But it feel mostly like that :
Pictures of Cats section West Seattle Blog dingbat newspaper rubber cement Cultural exchange gif newsroom cafe rubber cement, How to unlock potential of a makers? Kindle Single syndicated Instagram community Fablabs network mthomps, Mozilla iPhone app should isn’t a business model skills curmudgeon production of innocence. aaron swartz Fuego tweets community Document I want to travel and learn new skills but It’s to expensive Cloud metered model Where can I help Gardening & War section YouTube social media SEO information overload analytics Journal Register data visualization I need skilled people for a project WikiLeaks Groupon, collaboration Steve Mobility Jobs we need a common language napster AP What Would Meme Do the power of spreading the Cats belongs to the cats person who owns one carmadgeon Voice of San Diego free as in beer dead trees the notion of the public github torvalds.

It’s a mess. Then you just have to ask to google.

Well, actually, it’s not so simple. You must know exactly what and how to search. image

How to build an European Identity through the mobility of Makers

As a student, it’s cool to go in Erasmus+[1] and spend 6 months somewhere abroad in EU. You learn and meet different culture, people, food and drinks, a different way to see things and basically, it open your mind. But how to extend or expand this opportunity outside this framework?
Like what about retired people, about non academic people, about in-between-jobs and what about makers?

[1] The Erasmus Programme (EuRopean Community Action Scheme for the Mobility of University Students) is a European Union (EU) student exchange programme established in 1987. Erasmus+, or Erasmus Plus, is the new programme combining all the EU’s current schemes for education, training, youth and sport, which was started in January 2014.

L’importance que possède ce programme a dépassé le monde académique européen, en étant reconnu comme un élément important favorisant la cohésion et la connaissance de l’Union européenne auprès de la population jeune. Cela a conduit à utiliser le terme de « génération Erasmus » pour qualifier ces étudiants universitaires qui, au travers de cette expérience, ont créé des liens d’amitié internationaux et possèdent une évidente conscience de citoyenneté européenne.

source: wikipedia EN and wikipedia FR


The European Program for the Mobility of Makers

VULCA wants to build a mobility program (inspired by Erasmus +) destined to a wider portion of Society around the idea of Making. VULCA has three missions:

  • To facilitate MAKING by bringing together various profiles (hobbyists, engineers, artists, designers, hackers, and craftsmen) around a common Making project ;
  • To allow any citizen to TRAIN on making technics (digital, traditional) in a European context ;
  • To INCREASE COMPETENCES of Fablabs (and other maker spaces) by encouraging the mobility of more skilled citizens from one Fablab to another (Management, Financing, Communication, Community Building, etc.).

My vision of how it could work


About Erasmus

  • The exchange is only between University, even if Eramsus+ in not only for students anymore.
  • It’s only a one-life-time opportunity.
  • What do you learn exactly?

What about Makers?

  • How to connect with other?
  • How to found where my skills could be usefull?
  • Where to learn specific skills?
  • How to finance to travel? I still have a rent to pay and all kind of obligation.
  • And more importantly, What kind of admin I’ll have to do to benefit of this?


  • There is some project coming, I miss some skills in my community. How to find people elsewhere? but then I will probably have to pay them more for travel and hosting.
  • As a fabmanager, there is an insanely LOT of things to do. I don’t want to babysit someone on top of my tasks.
    Ask me if have I the time for that?
  • I don’t know you! How do I know if you’re not full of BS?
  • And more importantly, What kind of admin I’ll have to do to benefit of this?

During Octobermake

In Moulins (France), we gathered with 15-ish fablab’s representatives from EU image

We met also the RFF (french fablab network) and it make me think about this :

  • I have learned dutch at school, I live in brussels but never had to use dutch so I’m really bad at it.
  • Most of french don’t speak very well english or not at all, they usually don’t need to so why bother to learn.
    But then, it’s easier to stay in France and make any excuses to not connect with the world by talking english. “c’est trop dur et à quoi ça va me servir?”
  • maker at the fablab will say to me, “Arrr, github, pfff mec, it’s to complex for me, it’s geek stuff and shit. I will never understand how to use this and I even don’t need to use it, cause I use google apps or whatevs… “

Like French with english (language), it’s easy to not learn something because it’s hard. But we need to better explain why and how many advantages they can benefit from. Like english as a common language to talk to most of the people, Like the driving licence to drive on public road, Like github to work and collaborate on project together and not only on code dev. It’s a common ground to be able to move and directly contribute and document into the workflow of the fablab host.

Ergo (donc - so) this website….

So, how to solve most of these?

building trust

note: Why, even in peacetime, do friends become enemies? And why, even in wartime, do enemies become friends?
source: game of trust by Nicky Case

If I want to send a maker from Openfab to Slovenia (for ex.)
Igor will think, “Ho good, I know Nicolas so if he recommend me this girl, she should be skilled and trustfully. I will agree to host her”

But first, I’ll need to trust this girl myself. I will not vouch for someone I don’t trust, right? Risking the trust between Igor and me.

How to build trust?

It all start from a community. Trust is build between members and then, it’s just about how to extend this trust between communities. Like a mesh network.


A community is a small or large social unit (a group of living things) who have something in common… Communities often share a sense of place that is situated in a given geographical area … Durable relations that extend beyond immediate genealogical ties also define a sense of community. People tend to define those social ties as important to their identity, practice, and roles in social institutions like family, home, work, government, society, or humanity, at large. source: wikipedia EN

common language

how to communicate?

Obviously, it’s easier to know english to communicate on internet and most of everywhere in the world.
No secret there. To know how, you need to learn and practice.
Again, like an IT network, we need protocols to share common data.

how to work together?

Same as language. It’s not easy to work with other. It’s something we have to learn and practice.
And we need to agree on which method of course.

As an autodidact, I learned somehow to work an idea until it please me. I don’t really have a method per say.
But some methods make sense for me. Like:

  • Lean method image
  • Gamification loop image
  • Habit loop image
  • Agile method image

Yup, there is like a pattern, right?
How do we use that?
I like the gamification way. We need to learn new habits, we need it to be fun, we need it to be effective and rewarding.

And it also match with “project based learning”:

  1. context?
  2. objectives?
  3. proposition?
  4. doing, testing, is it working?
  5. sharing (restitution des conclusions)

winwinwinwin situation

Happy maker + happy sender + happy host + happy EU = winwinwinwin


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