Biohackathon – Aid for Labs

14th July
Start at 13:00, open end

CoMakingSpace, Czernyring 15
69115 Heidelberg

Check out how to get there
Free registration (see below)



Inequality affects science as well. Scientists in developing countries struggle to get access to funding and equipment to carry on their research. At the same time, many of them decide to pursue their mission in western countries. As a result, science often neglects challenges affecting specifically the developing world, which in addition needs to import technologies and innovations from abroad.

Meanwhile, in developed countries, science proceeds fast paced leaving behind scientific equipment to collect dust in backrooms, because considered to be obsolete. However, similarly to what we do with our smartphones and laptops, these instruments, even though they are not the last fancy model, are in perfect condition to perform their job.
Aid for Labs is a non-profit organization dedicated to improve access to scientific instrumentation and know-how of local organizations in developing countries. They recover this forgotten equipment and ship it in bulk to universities and research institutions in need.

The Challenge

In the backrooms of research labs, you can also find broken semi-functioning equipment. More often than not, these devices would need a little touch up, such as substituting a broken electronical component, and would be as good as before.
Biotop Community Lab and CoMakingSpace have decided to team up to support Aid for Labs in their goal of promoting a more equal access to science. Together with Aid for Labs, we have collected some devices in need of repair and it is our goal to bring them back in function.
This way, equipment that would have ended up in a junkyard, could now serve science once again, empowering scientists in developing countries to address their local challenges and their societies to be authors of their own future.

What can you do to help

In the spirit of promoting democratization of science and access to biotechnology, we want to involve as many people as possible in this effort. Science equipment is not too different from household appliances, so if you are good at fixing broken devices, at understanding how things do or do not work, if you are a maker, or a scientist, you can help solve this challenge, by simply joining the Biohackathon and be willing to put your knowledge to help!

Biotop Community Lab is going to offer guidance on how the specific devices work, while the CoMakingSpace is going to make available all the tools which might be needed.


We want to ensure hands-on work for every participant, so the event is limited to 20 people to fix 3-4 devices.
But don’t worry, in case more people are interested, you’ll be put on a waiting list: we have already more broken devices waiting in the line!
For this reason, if you have registered but you cannot join anymore, please let us know in time so we can fill all places.

Registration and the event is free of charge, but donations are welcome to cover the repair costs and help organize more events like this.

If you want to join us and help to make science a little more equal, fill the form below!

Hope to see you for some Biohacking!

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