Last 15th of Februrary  I was participating in the 3rd Symposium of the Research Group on Collaborative Spaces in Barcelona. I had to answer different questions according to my experience and answer how coworking spaces and collaborative practices can dynamize rural areas. And here you are the most important points Ishared:

COWORKING SPACES LOCATED IN RURAL AREAS MAKE TALENT COME BACK HOME. One of the biggest benefits of coworking spaces located in rural areas is that they facilitate that citizens from that town that had leaved home for work or studies come back to their town, and in consequence, they bring back their talent too.

RURAL AREAS ARE A TREND AND A NEED FOR WORKERS FOR URBAN AREAS. A trend because every day there are more professionals who work as freelances and have more flexibility to work where they want. They only need a computer an internet connection. A need because in a rural areas they have cheaper prices and more comforts than in cites as Barcelona, and coworking spaces gives them the connections, the opportunities and the “atmosphere” that they maybe they miss from the city. Maybe in a town they don’t have too much services, but neither they have too much needs. And is also important to remark, that towns from Catalonia, are not so far from Barcelona and they can go there for meetings or workshops and come back home the same day.

COWORKING IN RURAL AREAS GIVES FRESH AIR AND AN OPEN MINDED ATMOSPHERE. Most of my coworkers come to the place, not because of tables and chairs, but yes for the “good vibes”. This “openminded atmosphere” helps to attract talent and, in consequence, dynamize rural areas. Maybe in a town a place to work is not a basic must, because the rent of offices is cheap or free and everybody needs a community. In rural areas everybody belongs a sportive or cultural community. Coworking spaces located in rural areas had create professional communities “with fresh air” of freelances and creative people with ideas that had never existed, because there wasn’t a place to meet. Coworking in a rural area is like a “magic place” where “cool things” happen without the need to go to Barcelona.

COWORKING IN RURAL AREAS GENERATE STRONG PROJECTS AND CREATE LOCAL WORK. Urban coworkings use to have more flexible and international coworkers. My coworkers are from the town or the surroundings and they work here during years. Is not a temporal place, is a long term decision.  This deeper and long term relation, creates strong projects and create jobs for people from the local area. For example, LECO. Maybe in rural areas is easier to generate jobs for the community, because of the proximity and the daily interactions with coworkers and community builder.  In my case, i have a community of fifteen people and I try to give work opportunities to all of them, because i am well connected  and is easy to recommend my coworkers to my clients.

COWORKING IN RURAL AREAS HELPS TO GENERATE CREATIVE PROJECTS THAT CONTRIBUTE TO GIVE VALUE TO THE AREA. I belive that the professional profile in rural areas is different that in urban areas. For example I have technologic profiles, but in the space there are also lawyers, a veterinarian and a winemaker. And is awesome to see them working together. They generate collaborative and creative projects, that helps to dynamize rural areas. For example, the cellar, who serves wine in all our events, has create with the collaborations of two coworkers a winetourism project which works with and mobile app that helps the participants to find wine bottles hidden in the forest.

“Coworking gives rural areas the doses of innovation, freshness and creativity that we will not have without this kind of collaborative spaces. And that coworking spaces are one of the main elements that allows to recover and attract talent in rural areas”

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