According to a definition available on Wikipedia, Coworking is the social gathering of a group of people who, while still working independently, share the same values and are interested in the synerg y coming out of a shared working environment.
The spirit of the time
Coworking is in tune with the spirit of our time. Nowadays, anyone with a laptop, an Internet connection and 100 Euros can start his/her own activity. It has never been easier to interconnect with other entrepreneurs and skilled people, no matter what their background or their location.
So it is no coincidence that coworking spaces are emerging all around the globe, redefining the way people used to consider a w orking environment. Coworking spaces such as The Hub in London, or Citizen Space in San Francisco have opened in all major cities.
In Europe, more than 150 coworking spaces (here is a list) have opened in cities such as Amsterdam, Paris, Brussels, Berlin, Milan, Warsaw, Lisbon, Dublin, Budapest, Riga and many more.
Mapping coworking in Europe
This survey and the Coworking Europe 2010 conference are a first step to map this trend and understand its potential impact in Eur ope. As our survey of coworking spaces showed, coworking is a bottom-up sustained movement that is accelerating.
The concept has already taken off in a number of countries. The number of coworking entrepreneurs, freelancers or even teleworkers is increasing along with the steady growth of coworking capacities.
Furthermore, the interactions between coworking spaces would create a useful international network of entrepreneurs and skilled professionals around Europe and beyond.
Coworking, a very strong trend to support entrepreneurship and innovation
Even some traditional office centres or incubators are now considering coworking as a new approach to running their facilities.
Nevertheless, as our survey confirms, coworking is not only about sharing a physical space. Coworking, most and foremost, is about establishing a community of likeminded people in order to build dynamic networks. People are there to speak with each other, share knowledge, network and sometimes even co-create new projects.
Along with other initiatives, we believe coworking could inject a new entrepreneurial, innovative and sustainable energ y into the European economy.
Click here to download the Coworking Europe 2010 Survey