Ingenuity Can’t be Locked Down! The Careables Conference

1 July 2020 - Rachana Khatri

Nepal Communitere has been a member of the Careables community through our ongoing partnership with the Global Innovation Gathering. This amazing, vibrant community of global makers has been working hard to rapidly design, test and produce critical products in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.   

On June 25th our very own Innovation and Nepal Fab Lab lead, Pallab Shrestha presented during WikiFactory’s Viral Response roundtable discussion. Along with other presenters from countries like Brazil, Iraq, Cameroon, and the health lead from Formlabs based in the US, we were able to share our own experiences and learn how other global makers are mobilizing to respond to critical needs. 

We were able to look at how other countries are mapping their needs using GIS tools, breaking down products into fewer, simpler parts and pieces and then deploying those products that will have the most significant benefits for both the public and/or frontline health workers.

At Nepal Communitere we’re exploring further collaborations with this global community to begin designing, adapting, prototyping and testing products that can bridge both low and high tech methods, while using materials that are more readily available in Nepal. The main challenge as we all know, is Nepal’s supply chain issues. Any of these distributed manufacturing initiatives will have to hack these challenges first and foremost. Here’s a link to Pallab’s COVID-19 presentation.

For Nepal, the potential for distributed manufacturing is immense, which is why Nepal Communitere, in partnership with Field Ready, the Fab Foundation, Solidworks Foundation and MIT’s Center for Bits & Atoms, is bringing the very first Nepal Fab Lab in 2021 to our Pulchowk hub. The shipping containers you see now will be transformed and fully equipped with cool digital fabrication equipment, supplies and materials, CAD/CAM software and a skilled team to train users of the Fab Lab to design and manufacture diverse products to fill critical gaps. 

For all you product design geeks out there, here’s a sneak peak of what you can get your hands on at the Nepal Fab Lab! Stay tuned for expansion of our co-working space into a fully equipped Fab Lab

We’re working hard to fast track the painful and complicated government approval process to bring the Fab Lab to Nepal ASAP so that we can mobilize our makers to respond to COVID-19 product needs. 

If you or your organization can help facilitate this process through your organization and contacts, please reach out to Pallab Shrestha now! We will only have the Nepal Fab Lab as a community resource through the support and collaboration of like-minded partners like you!