National League of Cities Report Finds 26 Percent of U.S. Cities are Participating in the Maker Movement, Seeing Positive Economic Impact

WASHINGTON - A new report released today from the National League of Cities (NLC) examines the "maker movement" and identifies what cities can do to create, support and grow maker communities locally. "How Cities Can Grow the Maker Movement", a first-of-its-type analysis of the maker movement, finds that 26 percent of U.S. cities have makerspaces, and highlights 10 city examples to define the movement and analyze what role local policy can play in the movement's success.  

"Only 26 percent of American cities are engaging in the maker movement, which is shown to have a positive economic impact in cities," said Clarence E. Anthony, CEO and executive director, National League of Cities. "Across the country, cities are working hand-in-hand with maker communities to invest in makerspaces and encourage entrepreneurialism. This city-level support has helped to cement the role of makers as potential job creators and conduits for economic growth. With this new report, cities can learn how to become engaged and benefit from the maker movement."  

The report brings definition to an often unclear understanding of the maker movement, which  can include everything from small production manufacturing to prototyping to tech workshops. Many cities that have invested in makerspaces in their communities have seen a positive economic return. In cities like Eugene, Ore. and Chattanooga, Tenn., conversion of city buildings into makerspaces and prioritizing high-speed connectivity has attracted capital, talent and industry.  

"Through makerspaces, cities can incentivize economic growth and entrepreneurialism," said Brooks Rainwater, senior executive and director, National League of Cities' Center for City Solutions. "This report provides cities with tangible ways to innovate and take advantage of the ever-growing sharing economy. Cities that have designated spaces for prototyping, manufacturing, innovation and collaboration have seen economic growth and more competitive workforces."  

Click here to read the full report.  

The National League of Cities (NLC) is dedicated to helping city leaders build better communities. NLC is a resource and advocate for 19,000 cities, towns and villages, representing more than 218 million Americans. Learn more at