Since 2010 be able works on different projects. Every project has one in common: Empowerment through the process of design. As a nonprofit organization our aim is the inclusion and integration of people from marginalized groups.

2022 /23

STADT R A U M FLUSS is a competition for everyone in Hamburg and makes the creative potential of the people visible. Citizens are invited hand in ideas that we exhibit in the city hall and the main Library. To support the idea creation we offer online workshops and digital consultation hours.
learn more about the contest

In this cooking project " Ick hab Knast! ", topics such as home, origin, family and food culture are explored with a group of women from Berlin-Pankow prison.


The HACKademy invites students of different disciplines, people with disabilities, makers and Health Experts to jointly develop open-source products and instructions to make them accessible and adaptable for other people with similar needs.
learn more about the HACKademy

Inclusion is not a niche theme: everyone benefits from an accessible, safe and lively neighbourhood! With the project "Moabit Hürdenfrei" we want to make the challenges and potentials of the neighbourhood visible and develop practical solutions for the improvement of accessibility.

How do blind people orient themselves in the city? Where do wheelchair users meet hurdles? And how can we use technology to remove these obstacles? This is the theme of HackyDays, a workshop format for schools that we are developing together with the organisation Junge Tüftler.

learn more about this project.


Creative tinkerers, people with disabilities and people who care for others come together and develop replicable and cost-effective open source tools, so-called careables, in inclusive teams. We are hosting this digital platform with the help of which we bring together teams throughout Germany and support them in their collaboration.

We all have to eat, but only together with different people it becomes a feast! In the inclusive cooking club, cooking is understood as a creative, social and communicative event that also promotes inclusion.



An educational project to imitate, for fewer barriers and more inclusion. In close cooperation with id22: Institute for Creative Sustainability.

learn more about the project

How does science work? Where does science begin and where does it end? Can anyone'create knowledge'? For our partners of Dialog macht Schule we develop methods and strategies for dialogue facilitators in the context of schools.


How can better reintegration of patients of the Forensics be more successful? Patients, clinic employees and external participants developed a creative process which produced ground breaking attempts to the reintegration of forensic patients in new ways.

We are developing an open source product for wheelchair users through creative process and maker technologies in a team of wheelchair users, technicians and designers.

Traditional handcraft, fair production, contemporary design: The residences bring seven designers from Germany into a collaborative design process with producers of traditional textiles in Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines. A Project by Goethe-Institute, FOLKDAYS and be able.

An exploration for future designers in our blind spots. We expanded our own perception with empathy tools and other immersion methods in order to develop new perspectives and to find other design approaches on this subject.

Lab.Bode is an initiative for the strengthening of mediation work in museums. We organised educative workshops with pupils from different schools around Berlin in the Bode Museum.

The first inclusive co-working space in Germany emerges in Berlin-Wedding. be able works with students from Weißensee Kunsthochschule, experts of different disabilities and the TUECHTIG Team on concepts and tools that should make co-working attractive and feasible for everyone.

Together with school classes, we create treasures from recycled materials and experience nature with our hands.


Refugees and allies seek to further develop arrival support app through collaborative work.

What does inclusion mean and what barriers do people with different disabilities have in their daily lives? In a short project with SOZIALHELDEN, Creative Accessibility Tours and students of HAWK Hildesheim, IKEA Tempelhof was examined for accessibility and new solutions for a more inclusive co-operation in our society.

Through a series of experimental workshops, a new production concept is developed together with employees of the sheltered workplace, which meets their individual abilities and personalities.

Participative Product Development Twist n' Store

For the 150 anniversary of Bethel, a product is being developed through a collaborative design process by employees and technicians from the carpentry shop and be able designers.

Kreative workshops at Marianne Cohn Schule

The company Textilpflege Meyer in Osnabrück used the occasion of opening a new building to challenge and show the creative potential of its employees and people with disabilities from a cooperating workshop. We used colorful tapes to make visual designs on the front plates of industrial washing machines.


Fakos are able

Employees from ThyssenKrupp and woodworkers with handicaps designed product ideas in a sheltered Workshop of Franz Sales Haus. Learning from each other and developing social skills is the main objective in this inclusive process of creativity. There will be more workshops to come.

we are one and able

We developed screen prints with refugees from the Lampedusagroup "we are one". A selection of prints on T-Shirts and bags is on sale in selected museumshops in Bauhaus Dessau, Bielefeld and Berlin. This cooperation was started for the exhibition on charity called CARITAS in Bielefeld. 

Papparable - Design seminar with executives and employees of a paper mache studio.

Employees of the Dr. Ausbüttel firm and members oft he Gottessegen studios in Dortmund seek to work together in a two-day joint design process.

Transgenerational Design wit mothers and doughters of Neukölln

Designers and tailors teach basics of sewing and design in this course for mothers and daughters from the neighborhood. Results will be shown at the cultural festival of 48 Stunden Neukölln in June.


Design with a prison

We were asked to work for a workshop that is recycling technical devices in a prison. Our task was to find new purposes for the extracted parts like wires, plugs or magnets together with the women from the prison. The crafting skills of every participant in mind we created many different ideas for products and the women learned new ways to handle their materials and discovered their creativity. 

InterKulturelle LernSTOFFE

Workshops with migrants and visitors of the Museum für Europäische Kulturen (Museum of European Cultures). Isabelle and Melinda from be able created different practical units facing the textil collection and the special exhibition of the “Textilzirkel Potsdam“ while Dagmar Neuland Kitzerow geve guided tours. This combined theoretical and practical aspects in a creative way. The workshop participants with several cultural backgrounds were able to use the museum as a source of inspiration. The workshops were organised in cooperation with “Nachbarschaftsmuseum e.V.“ as part of the project „Alle Welt: Im Museum. InterKulturelle LernSTOFFE“. Sponsorship by the “Bundesministerium des Inneren und dem Deutschen Museumsbund“.

workshop with Haus Freudenberg and tel inform

With the sheltered workshops of Haus Freudenberg and the Company tel inform we developed a new format for project managers of companies and employees of workshops for people with disabilities. Both of them had the chance to discover their creativity in a series of design basic workshops. We found out that you can experience inclusion quite naturally while developing your own design ideas. This way creativity, social skills, teamwork and solution-oriented thinking are encouraged. After a successful first test there will be further trainings with changing groups for employees of both companies in 2014.


Design Basics in Bogota

In December 2013, we performed a design-empowerment workshop with artisans from different regions of Colombia in Bogota. The University of El Bosque invited us to the International Arts and Crafts Fair Expo Artesanias for introducing the idea of be able to artisans of different areas and to open up new perspectives on their craft.

verstrickt und zugenäht

For the time of one semester design students from the Art Academy Berlin Weissensee cooperated with manual workers of different cultures under the guidance of be able. After some design basic workshops and the learning of traditional handicraft techniques, we began to experiment with various materials and started to develop concepts. Focussing on the characteristics of design and craft of different cultures we created extraordinary designs which reanimated ancient techniques. 


be able Box66

After an introduction to the topic and key components of design, such as material and colour, towards first drafts for particular target groups the group made many experiences during the time of one week. In this creative work, different cultures could meet, share and learn from each other: People from Turkey, Vietnam, Macedonia, Russia, Italy and Germany had the chance to get to know each other: people with more or less craft prior knowledge, with or without work experience, with different education, of different ages and different sexes.

Handdenker (thinking with your hands)

During summer term 2012 there was an interdisciplinary project offered at the Kunsthochschule Berlin-Weissensee in order to initiate further design processes in various workshops under the artistic direction of Prof. Helmut Staubach, Prof. Zane Berziner, Isabelle Deschamps and Melinda Barth. 10 students looked together with employees of the candle making factory of the Mosaic gGmbH, the bonbon manufactory of the Faktura gGmbH, the wood workshop of VIA Werkstätten and with the hand bookbinding of the Spektrum GmbH for new ideas to inspire the production in the workshops. These designs and the cooperative working process were shown in the exposition „Wir sind Handdenker" at the Kunsthalle at the Hamburger Platz in Berlin in July 2012.


Pilotproject – Product-development at the ceramic workshops of VIA

Isabelle Dechamps developed be able’s award-winning educational concept in cooperation with a studio for handicapped individuals during her design studies. The goal was to spark participants’ creativity and strengthen their social competence by supporting them in developing their product ideas.