The Growing Appeal of Makerspaces

Choosing the Right Investments to Foster Student Innovation


This report delves into the development of makerspaces. Specifically, we examine how early movers, like Case Western University, manage up-front cost, facilitate self-directed learning, and build momentum across campus and in the community.

This brief is one in a six-volume series on Campus 2025. To learn more, explore the other briefs on corporate-inspired offices, industry interface spaces, luxury and community-centric residence halls, shared and flexible research labs, and active learning spaces.

Key observations from our research

1. Since 2014, the White House has secured pledges from 150 colleges and universities to invest in makerspaces.

2. Pioneering institutions estimate initial financial investment of $500K for equipment and $1M for equipment and support.

3. Incorporate tools and equipment from multiple disciplines to facilitate self-directed learning and creation.

4. Successful institutions supplement makerspaces with student-facing incubators.

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