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The craftsman of the XXI Century: state of affairs and prospects dell'handmade in the web 2.0

In a moment of difficulty in raising funds, plays a fundamental role to support the small and medium enterprises and specifically artisan firms, representing a decisive for the Italian cultural and social development.
Come? Suggesting new tools and strategies.

Handmade and manual creativity then become the starting point to create synergies innovative growth, especially if associated with potential of the web and new media, to fast tools and dynamic capable of activating virtuous circles in network.
So, the traditional profession of craftsmen, that always brings to mind the dexterity and workshop activities, is transformed into a work web oriented, combining modernity and tradition live immersed in community based on virtual participation.

This was discussed during the conference "The Artisan of the XXI Century"Which took place in Florence on 14 November to Villa Fabbricotti, with the support of the Region of Tuscany, Tuscany Promotion, garagErasmus, Confartigianato Companies Tuscany, ARTEX, CNA Tuscany. The day opened with the words of’Councillor for Productive Activities of the Tuscan Region Gianfranco Simoncini, that, presenting new calls and integration processes between companies, pays special attention to innovation and research for small artisan companies that combine quality and modernity. In fact, Tuscany, said the Councillor, will be launched at the shops-school training purposes; will be promoted initiatives to support the set sector to safeguard production techniques that are likely to disappear and to promote the digitization.

A follow, intervened Alessandro Ricceri, President of ARTEX (Center for Artistic and Traditional Handicrafts of Tuscany), to present the state of the art of traditional artistic productions with useful numbers (only in Tuscany there are now 33.000 small businesses, with more than 177.000 employees, that correspond to the 12% of employees) : showed that - data in hand - Companies can differentiate themselves by focusing on research, originality and quality’ have been rewarded by the market, as well as those who have turned abroad aiming to internationalization.

A follow, Simona Bonciani, expert consultant and lecturer in communication and web marketing, owner of the agency Noetica Bologna, was called upon to play a training on new tools and methodologies to communicate, promote and sell in the web 2.0: a quick rundown on the principles and strategies of communication and online marketing to allow a company to design their active presence on the network and to define their business model online.

An important consideration – from industry data related to the use of promotional tools such as social networks and the number of e-commerce in Italy (see data Casaleggio Associati, Netcomm and Observatory of the Politecnico di Milano) - Which shows the importance of not "escape" to the change taking place ("A company that is not online is not a company but a company that does not communicate communicate its absence…”),to plan a careful strategy ( This means defining the direction, choice and differentiation ) and finally to constantly update in a changing world.

But when it comes to Craft 2.0 also known as next generation software, of online technologies that allow you to develop the specifics of’handmade. New materials, new web services, app and robotic manufacturing processes are just some of the examples presented in the course of the intervention Garage Rasmus. In fact there are rapid changes in technology to lead the traditional vision of the artisan to a "know-how" that passes through new automated production, but also to a diffusion open techniques, technologies for rent shared, online self promotion (eshop, blogging). The result is a digital fabrication that creates products whose added value is given by a more innovative, and the user's ability to say "I did it".

As shown Filippo Moroni, expert, there is the possibility to share craft skills across platforms open source, that synthesize ideas and techniques from many minds in order to create new technologies and innovative products. Abroad, there are genuine participatory workshops in which experiment with new models that can be imported in our country, models in which one can avail even at a distance of digital instruments of production.
The concept of crafts then expands, thanks to the technological expertise and extends until it reaches the design, the rapid industrialization of unique.

As pointed out also Simone Cosimi, journalist and Wired Style, it is important to enter into a co-branding and crowd-founding, where the need to bring together resources and expertise offers endless creativity and enterprise development. All thanks to the web course.

What should they do then the artisans in the web 2.0?
Stefano Micelli, professor and author of the book Craftsman future. Innovation in the hands of the Italians (I Grilli Marsilio Editore, 2011), introduced the panel discussion highlighting the latest developments of the figure of the: which rose by a professional who, once, protected them and protected the "secrets" in his workshop, a "techno-artisan" who today shows, says and then shares his experience and his ability to make network, finding innovative ideas right in the web and interacting with other users.

In this regard Micelli has introduced some case history of excellence in the Italian: artisans of the twenty-first century in a conscious and purposeful use of new technology and new media.

Giulia Tognellini, spokesman for the project Thatsarte, web platform dedicated to the sale of artistic ceramics, presented relevant aspects of this e-commerce, in which the 90% sales of the project comes from the U.S. (with orders that exceed even the 5000 U.S. dollar) and in which users primarily seek specific products, made drawings of craftsmen designed ad hoc, with unique and unrepeatable, tailored.

Matthew Gioli, Brand Super Duper Hats, specialized in the production of hair handmade by refined retro style, illustrates its e-commerce project, that stands out in the history of the network for all Made in Italy. A story that starts from pure manufacturing and a "Savoir faire" Italian, that is able to attract online users to a "virtual shop" taste authentic artisan.

Francesca Marzocchi, the project Digital Makers CNA Tuscany, explains the ability of artisans 2.0 to combine the tradition of manufacture with the technology of the products or with the use new tools (3d printers, laser cut) production. He then reported to the public his experience at the American reality Artisan Asilum Boston, a shared space for makers (those who want to) bringing together complementary technologies (unlike the Italian situation where the division between small enterprises are often an obstacle). In this CNA Tuscany has recently started training internships to develop the digitization of business.

Antonio Scribano the project Do it! – whose name comes from the acronym of Yu did youserlf - (it is a group of designers who are involved in creative recycling who founded the first Italian company funded by crowd-founding) spoke of 01Lamp, It Lampada open source obtainable from a pizza box. In this case, to make a difference is a platform that makes available to all objects with a source code. Users can buy the product and make it on their own, but also improve it, and share it all online.

Finally, Elisa Lucia Delogu and Principe, presented the project of Fish Tires, Bologna a workshop dedicated to textile design and creation of sustainable products with recycled fabrics and natural materials. In this case not only provides customers with the ability to produce something, But the realization of business web design tailored. The collections are produced seasonal, but continuous, and the client to build their own dress. Strength of the project, in addition to the absolute personalization, also the website that presents a captivating and original concept.

During the round table has also intervened Valeria Blacks, responsible for ICT Confartigianato Tuscany.

The event was sponsored by Region of Tuscany, Tuscany Promotion, garagErasmus, ARTEX,CNA and Confartigianato companies Tuscany Tuscany.