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Rebuilding the future: how right-to-repair sparks transformation 
Arsev Umur Aydinoglu (Middle East Technical University)
Müge Çetin (Ozyegin University Faculty of Law)
Başak Özparlak (Ozyegin University)
Arda Bülben Yazıcı (TOBB University of Economics and Technology)
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Traditional Open Panel

Short Abstract:

Explore repair as a fundamental human activity and the emerging right-to-repair movement. Examine repair's concept, legal, ethical aspects, and resistance by manufacturers. Discuss co-design, skills, and tools for repair. Join us in redefining societal values with STS scholars in this urgent issue.

Long Abstract:

Repair is a fundamental human activity. It is essential for maintaining and extending the life of our belongings, and it can also be a source of creativity and satisfaction. Recently, however, the right-to-repair has become increasingly contested. Many products are designed to be difficult or impossible to repair, and manufacturers often restrict access to spare parts and repair manuals. The individuals’ basic right to “tinker with something” has been slowly taken away with justifications as “complex design needs”, “intellectual property rights”, “safety”, etc. A transformative movement, the right-to-repair has been emerging.

This call for papers invites scholars, activists, and practitioners to explore the concept of repair from a variety of perspectives, including:

• The concept of repair: What does it mean to repair something for different stakeholders? Does repairability increase of decrease value of something? What is the role of repair in circular economy?

• The right-to-repair: What are the legal, ethical, and social implications of the right-to-repair? How can we ensure that people have the right-to-repair their own belongings, even when manufacturers try to prevent them from doing so? How can we ensure that everyone has the right-to-repair their belongings?

• Resistance to repair: Why do manufacturers resist repair? What are the strategies they use to make their products difficult or impossible to repair? How can we resist these strategies and promote a more repairable world?

• Co-design: What role can co-design play in promoting repair? How can we design products that are easier to repair? How to obtain skills and tools to repair? How can we encourage more people to participate in repair activities?

The right-to-repair is no longer a niche concern but an urgent societal issue. Join us in this panel to transform the concept of repair and collectively redefine the role of STS scholars.

Accepted papers: