Utopian 3D Printing: ethical debates on new technologies at the Master of European Design Labs

3D printing, one of the most revolutionary technologies in the 21st century, offers not just a whole new range of possibilities but also serious ethical debates on the proper use of it. What awaits a society with the capacity to produce and share almost anything, at any time and anywhere?

The Master of European Design Labs 2015 delved into the complexity of the world of 3D printing with a reflection on this issue, during the workshop 3D Printing Utopias with Adam Jorquera.

Adam Jorquera, a visual artist specialising in 3D printing technologies, modelling and 3D animation, founded Los Hacedores, a workshop and school devoted to sharing and teaching digital production using technology in 2012.

During this workshop the aim was to provide students with a deep analysis of the applications and impacts of technologies used in digital production. To do so, the students discussed issues such as their effects on the quality and longevity of human life, and the new utopian scenarios for individual empowerment based on the democratisation and delocalisation of these manufacturing technologies.

The students looked at the way in which 3D printing is about to bring about a third industrial revolution, and, on a more general note, they examined the history, technologies and applications of what is described as the Maker Revolution.

Lastly, using real cases and a visit to the studio of Los Hacedores, they had a look at the current possibilities offered by 3D printing and they reflected on the future.

An experience during which they all shared their opinions, understanding the complexity of the emergence of a new technology, and above all, where they had the chance to speak with an expert on the ethical controversies around this issue, which will help with their future personal and professional plans.

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