A few words with Chen Gao

Could you introduce yourself briefly? Tell us a few things about your background, studies, and general interests.

With a background in urban and rural planning, regional development strategy is an interesting issue for me. Because of the projects in the rural and peri-urban areas I did through both my undergraduate and postgraduate studies, I am keen to continue the study of peripheral regions. Moreover, when I was in college, we organize the open salon for knowledge share and generate several projects from there, so I am curious about the coworking model or shared working space of the CORAL program.

How was your moving to your new home? How are things going for you in your new place?

It is great to move to the innovative city of Berlin, and everything goes smoothly. The district I am living in is a technique/university town with a great atmosphere. Also, Erkner is a quiet and awesome place for working. As an ESR, it surprised me how tightly we are linked with each other. Also, there is a great community at IRS, in terms of both academic and social connections.

You are preparing for your Work Package meeting, how is your work going?

In this theoretical phase, I am working on the concepts and methods, trying to build the research design. There is a lot of new knowledge and ideas I need to digest, but it is also full of the freshness of exploration, which is an awesome part of the research.

Could you share with us some key insights/ “aha moments” from your work so far?

It is a natural characteristic of rural areas to have close social connections, collaborative working and entrepreneurship should take this advantage and emphasis the social/community impact. Another finding is that the trans-local interactions play key roles in the entrepreneurial ecosystem, this would be part of the further development orientation.

What do you expect from the WP meeting?

It is another time to communicate with other ESRs about the process of the research design. I am sure it would be helpful on both concepts and methods, and the ESRs with similar topics or cases could cooperate more closely in the next phase.

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This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No 955907.