Open World: 20 Databases to Help You Find Local Maker Resources

Open World: 20 Databases to Help You Find Local Maker Resources

The Maker Movement is about decentralization. And that’s cool! But it means that there’s no one single set of Maker resources — if you want to make things and need a place to do it, it might not be obvious where to look. So here are the different lists // maps // databases I know. Hopefully, between them, you’ll find something that will work for you.

First, here are maps of the whole world:

  • Maker Map, which has been featured on Make: before. They’ve a huge number of spaces listed, but at least in the area I’m from, it’s a little outdated. They’re totally open source, though – so if you know something they don’t, add it!
  • Makery has a global map too, with about 900 “labs” listed around the world. Anyone can submit a lab here – so please do! Tangentially, Makery also has a great newsletter that I enjoy reading every other week.
  • Ananse Group also publishes two different extensive maps (1 and 2), with over 6,000 “innovation spaces” globally. Their map includes Maker Faires and other events too. Creative Space Explorer is one of their partners— they have their own global map as well.
  • has a comprehensive map of all the world’s fab labs, spanning over 30 countries. Not all relevant makerspaces are fablabs though – so it’s not a one-stop-shop either.
  • The Hackerspace wiki maintains a map. You can choose to see all hackerspaces, or just those that are active. They also include when each space was last updated, to give you a better idea of what info might still be relevant.
  • Makertour is made by a group of explorers. They spend a little bit of time in a few spaces to document and share what each is about. They have plans to explore spaces all over the world, but so far have spent most of their time in Europe or Asia.

There’s another set of specifically American maps // lists:

Then there are some more specialized maps:

  • Local Tools offers a map of tool libraries (mostly in the U.S. and Canada), where you can borrow tools (if not space) for your project.
  • IDIN’s lists Innovation Centers in communities that live in poverty. Their work is definitely worth checking out even if they don’t work where you live.
  • Open Workshop Network lists 43 spaces in London. Originally, the plan was to expand the platform so cities all over the world could have their own localized registries, but it’s unclear whether or not that’s still in the works.
  • Nesta has a dataset of UK Makerspaces, which is available in several different formats for public use.
  • Make Works is so far only in Scotland and Birmingham, but they have all the infrastructure in place to expand. It’s an open source project to connect people with manufacturers and materials.
  • Makercities is a project out of Institute for the Future – not to map makerspaces, but a game for people to think about how to apply the Maker Movement to their cities. I think it’s fallen out of use a little, but still might be interesting.
  • Make: also put together this list of biohacking spaces. The original link they cited was dead when I tried it, so thanks DIYbio for putting that up!
  • Sharona Ginsberg has a list of Library Makerspaces on her site, and has loaded the info into this map. They’re almost all in the U.S.
  • There’s this network of U.S. universities with Maker spaces // programs, initiated by CMU. Not all their member spaces are accessible to people outside their respective universities, but some might be!

Did I miss some? Definitely. Share any I missed in the comments or get in touch.

And if spaces you know aren’t represented in these maps, let their makers know – help people find your space :)

Banner Image made from Map Settings by Martin Vanco from the Noun Project

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Liam Grace-Flood

An artist, engineer, and researcher, Liam makes all kinds of things, including public policy, fine art, electric motorcycles, and computational models. His passion for making is rivaled only by his dedication to ensuring other people have the resources they need to make, too. In that vein, as a 2017 Watson Fellow he's exploring how open workshops democratize and decentralize education, innovation, and industry to make better things, people, and communities.

You can find him at his website or on instagram

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