Deutscher Kongress für Geographie (DKG), September 19-23, 2023, Call for papers(Re)working spaces: Collaborative workspaces as effects and drivers of new spatial relations


March 13

Abstract submission


Yue Mao (Leibniz Institute for Regional Geography)
Danai Liodaki (Leibniz Institute for Regional Geography)
Ulrich Ermann (Universität Graz, Institut für Geographie und Raumforschung)



Short description

To strengthen geographical perspectives on the intersectional studies of emerging collaborative workspaces (CWS), this session deploys a relational understanding of space and explores the role of CWS in the production and reconfiguration of places.


English-language callGeographien der ArbeitWirtschaftsgeographieWorkplace GeographiesCollaborative WorkspacesMakerspaceNew Work

Collaborative workspaces (CWS) – such as “coworking spaces, hubs, hackerspaces, business incubators, accelerators and the like” (Avdikos & Pettas 2021, p. 44) – have risen rapidly in the last 15 years. CWSs are considered to firstly emerge in urban areas, but with later emergence, they also appear in other environments, such as urban fringes, rural and peripheral areas. This topic provides ground for dynamic discussions in intersections of management, urban studies and sociology. However, despite the complexity created by recent spatial mobilization of CWS, geographical perspectives on CWS are still scholarly understudied (Schmidt, 2019).

Deploying a relational understanding of space (Massey, 2005), this session focuses on the role of CWS in the production and reconfiguration of places. On the one hand, they compose under the trend of global urbanization and spreading urban practices. On the other hand, they also undergo adaptation and negotiation processes to become integral parts of the local and regional contexts. Therefore, CWS can both reflect the effects and act as drivers in changing spatial relations, triggering rethinking and reimaginations on issues such as local and regional development, rural urban relationships and more. For instance, some research calls for raising attention on the potential of CWS in spatial development (Avdikos & Merkel, 2020), others explore the spatial processes of diffusing CWS from urban to rural areas (Capdevila, 2021), resonating to the call for more place-based research on “global countryside” (Woods, 2007), or approach CWSs as spaces that can foster “new economy” (Vidaillet & Bousalham, 2020), and present alternatives to growth-driven spatial development.

Therefore, we welcome (not exclusively) contributions which:

●Explore the multi-scalar spatial configurations of CWSs,

●Analyze the new spatial relations that lead to the emergence of CWSs,

●Focus on the impact of CWSs in local community building and regional development,

●Reflect the rural-urban relationship addressed by CWSs,

●Analyse the potentials of CWSs to foster socially transformative processes.

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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.