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Dr Justin Marshall

Associate Professor in Design

Department: Northumbria School of Design

Dr Marshall moved to Northumbria in September 2016. He is an experienced maker and researcher. For over ten years his research has been investigating the integration of digital design and production technologies into both art and craft practices.

Dr Marshal is an experienced digital craftsperson, maker and researcher. For over fifteen years his research has been investigating the integration of digital design and production technologies into art and craft practices. As such he is interested in the role and significance of digital tools within craft practice, both in terms of new aesthetic opportunities, and how the creative use of this toolset challenges the concept of the ‘handmade’. He has exhibited digital craftwork both nationally and internationally.

He is also interested in how access to digital manufacturing tools can empower individuals and communities to 'make', especially in relation to Makerspaces and Maker communities, both within the UK and beyond.

More broadly, he is interested in how craft, as a materially sensitive and human centred practice can have value in multidisciplinary research projects and has been involved in numerous collaborative projects that bring together diverse teams to investigate areas beyond the normal scope of craft practitioners.

He has been member of the AHRC peer Review College since 2012, including sitting on the ‘Follow on Funding’ award panel. He is a Fellow of the RSA and is external examiner for BA(Hons)/MDes 3D Design and Craft Course at the University of Brighton.

Campus Address

Room 204c
School of Design, School of Design (CCE2)
Newcastle upon Tyne

0191 2273071


  • Ph.D.; ‘The Role and Significance of CAD/CAM Technologies in Craft and Designer-Maker Practice: with a Focus on Architectural Ceramics’.
  • MA Ceramics
  • BA (hons) Fine Art 

Research Themes and Scholarly Interests

Alongside a personal practice focused on the new aesthetic possibilities that the use of digital tools hold he is also interested in how, through the rapid expansion of both Makerspaces and Fab labs, access to digital manufacturing tools can empower individuals and communities to 'make'. So opening up the potential to create bespoke responses to personal and local concerns and refigure the relationship between consumption and production. To this end he instigated and ran the first Fablab in Southwest England.

In addition, he is interested in how craft, as a materially sensitive and human centred practice can have value in multidisciplinary research projects. This has been demonstrated in both national and international contexts, including as a Co-investigator on ‘Bespoke’ a 2 year RCUK Digital Economy funded project, and contributing to the Unbox festivals in New Delhi in both 2013 and 2014.

Most recently Dr Marshall was Co-investigator for ‘China’s Creative Communities project: Making Value and the Value(s) of Making’. This was a cross-disciplinary research and scoping project to bring together practitioners and academics in the UK and China to network, research, workshop and publically disseminate ideas and innovations around the multi-faceted value of making in

China. Funded by the AHRC/Newton Fund, it aimed to strengthen China’s multiple maker communities in partnership with the UK, as part of the UK’s broader support for China’s creative industries and knowledge economy.


Current/Recent Projects

2016: ‘China’s Creative Communities: Making Value and The Value(s) of Making in China
Co-Investigator oncollaborative multi-partner project, AHRC Newton Fund AH/P001076/1

2015: ‘Living Research’: Making in china,British Council/AHRC Newton Fund, exploratory visit to investigate the maker community and Shenzhen and Shanghai.    

2014-15: Lobster Grower - Developing the technology to fast track the aquaculture potential for the European Lobster, Principal Investigator oncollaborative multi-partner Agi-tech catalyst project, BBSRC/Innovative UK Ref: BB/M005194/1.           

2014: Digitally extended and augmented Textile Block printing, Falmouth University’s Research and Innovation fund. Principal Investigator on project to visit India to undertake digital craft workshops and work with regional block printing businesses. 

2012-15: Makernow: open digital fabrication lab, ESF & ERDF funding.

Key Publications


2017: Marshall, J & Rossi, C. Making with China: Craft-based Participatory Research Methods for Investigating Shenzhen’s Maker Movement. Digital Culture & Society (DCS), Vol. 3, Issue 1/2017 – Making and Hacking, ISSN 2364-2122

May 2016: Johnson, I., Vines, J. Taylor, N. Jenkins, E. and Marshall, J. Reflections on deploying distributed voting technologies with community organisations. Proceedings of SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI 2016). ISBN: 978-1-4503-3362-7 DOI: 10.1145/2858036.2858098 Received Honorable Mention (in top 4% of submissions)

Sept 2015: Marshall, J . Rogers, J. Wallace, J. Crafting the digital in Crafting Our Digital Futures, a publication to accompany the Digital Design Weekend 2015, V&A London. ISBN 978-0- 9576868-4-7. Available online.

July 2014: Bunnell, K & Marshall, J (Eds.), All Makers Now: Craft Values in 21st Century Production, International Conference Proceedings, Autonomatic Research Group, Falmouth University. ISBN 978-0-9544187-9-3

June 2014:Taylor, N; Frohlich, D; Egglestone, P; Marshall, J; Rogers, J; Blum-Ross, A; Mills, J; Shorter, M; Olivier, P, Utilising Insight Journalism for Community Technology Design, CHI'14: Proceedings of the 2014 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems ISBN: 978-1-4503-2473-1, DOI: 10.1145/2556288.2557054


Aug 2015: ‘Hybrid Craft’, exhibition of work as part of Siggraph 2015, Los Angles, US.

Sept 2012: ‘On our doorstep: local design activism’. All Bespoke work exhibited at 100% design, Earls Court, part of London Design Festival.

Sept 2011: ‘Bespoke’ at the V&A, as part of London Design Festival

Sept 2010 - 012: ‘LabCraft: digital adventures in contemporary craft’, Crafts Council UK touring exhibition focused on digital craft.



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