In a move designed to help citizens, the education community and business engage further with digital technology and production, the Nou Barris Digital Manufacturing Centre has been opened in the district’s technology park. The new centre offers training, outreach and advice to encourage collaborative design with a social return.
3D printers and scanners, prototyping machines, IT installations and a team of staff specialising in digital manufacturing technology. The new centre in Nou Barris combines technology resources and expert personnel in premises at the district’s Technology Park, managed by Barcelona Activa.
Open to everybody
Information and training in new digital manufacturing technologies is also aimed at local people and families. The centre will provide support for people running techno-social activities for all types of users. The idea is also to promote the exchange of technological knowledge between generations (from senior citizens to young children and teenagers) through open learning and networking.
Resources for the education community
The centre also makes teaching programmes available to education centres, in collaboration with the Barcelona Education Consortium. The programmes are aimed at students, teachers and technical staff, and include design and manufacturing workshops centring on various technologies. Another goal for the centre is to generate interest among girls in technology careers, the idea being to redress gender bias in careers in the digital sphere.
Business support for SMEs
The facility includes a support service for small and medium-size businesses and entrepreneurs to facilitate the production of industrial prototypes. It will act as a technology testing lab for products, with close links to the social and solidarity cooperative economy, social innovation, self-learning and the integration of social media into business and employment models.
The centre will also run technology skills sessions to promote new professional qualifications in the sector, such as 3D printing and the use of numerical control machines. EU data show that in the period up to 2020 as many as 756,000 jobs in the ICT sector will not be able to be covered due to a shortage of trained staff.