By Daniel Hunter

The potential of 3D printing is to be explored in the first of three special ‘design jams’ that will help create innovative ideas to enhance cities and the lives of their residents.

The 12-hour events, which have been organised by the London Creative and Digital Fusion and will be held at The Work Foundation, will bring together the talents of London-based digital and creative small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Teams will retain the rights over any ideas they come up with as part of the jams. The winning idea at the end of each jam will receive a prize — with the winners of the 3D printing event receiving business coaching to help them apply for London Fusion Collaborative Awards (up to £10,000 of business support).

The first design jam, on Friday, December 6th, will give a greater understanding about 3D printing and participants will have access to a 3D printer. The event will also include talks from inspiring business and academic speakers from Lancaster and Loughborough universities. Mentors will be on hand to help teams shape their ideas.

Andrew Sirs-Davies, from London Digital and Creative Fusion, said: “3D printing is at the forefront of what people are increasingly describing as the third industrial revolution.

“Our first in a series of three special cities-themed design jams will bring together some of the capital’s leading creative and digital talent to explore ideas for new innovative products and services for the modern city that can be realised through the use of this exciting new technology.

“I’m really excited to see what ideas will come out of this novel and collaborative process by bringing together a mix of people with different skills to explore how 3D printing can benefit our lives in the not too distant future.”

Following on from the 3D printing design jam, there will be a further two jams. The Services in the City design jam, on February 21, 2014, explores the use of open data to improve services within cities. The third design jam takes place on April 30, 2014, and will look at developing ideas for commercial products and services that could improve the health and wellbeing of city residents.

Lancaster University’s Professor Nick Dunn, who will be mentoring at the event, said: “Digital technologies such as 3D printing are transforming the way we design.

“Through increased accessibility, 3D printing is shaping new design to production business models and offers freedom, not simply in what we design and make, but also when and where we create things. It also enables us to communicate, collaborate and exchange ideas in provocative new ways.”

All three events will take place at The Work Foundation, 21 Palmer Street, SW1H 0AD.

London Creative and Digital Fusion is a tailored programme of interactive and in-depth support to help London-based digital and creative SMEs identify business opportunities to help attract new customers. London Fusion also helps with planning and realising new opportunities, as well as assisting the SMEs to find additional financial resources.

London Fusion is being delivered in partnership by Lancaster University, The Work Foundation, the Royal College of Art, Queen Mary University of London, Centre for Creative Collaboration, National Centre for Universities and Business, and London Higher.

The London Creative and Digital Fusion Project is a leading-edge and dynamic partnership funded through the GLA European Regional Development Fund programme. The two-year project that ends in December 2014 has a total starting budget of £5.07 million.

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