What is the definition of “Coworking”

Over the last decade, coworking has been sweeping the nation and has become a very popular alternative to the traditional workplace. The term “coworking” has taken on many different meanings, but what is coworking really? It is a term that is not referenced in any dictionary but was created to fit its many definitions.

Clay Spinuzzi, an associate professor of rhetoric at the University of Texas at Austin, conducted a 20-month study to pin down one definition of the word, he ended up with three.

  • Coworking space as a community center (“The object was to work alongside, but not with others.”)
  • Coworking as a collaboration space (“Unoffice arrangement that encouraged discussion, interaction between the coworkers.”)
  • Coworking as a networking hub (“Their focus was on entrepreneurship.”

The exact definition seemed to escape us all, but the coworking movement centered around a core set of shared values, deemed by Brad Neuberg, of community, openness, collaboration, accessibility and sustainability.

With there being so many ways to perceive coworking, our very own Liz Elam,

Owner of Link Coworking (Too and Flex) and Executive Producer of Global Coworking Unconference Conference (GCUC), best relates to Steve King’s, a partner at Emergent Research, definition of coworking.

King speaks about exploring the integration between work and life, and how we link the social side of work to productivity, work engagement, and worker wellbeing. He best explains that coworking “…is a place where the boundaries between work lives and personal lives are permeable and blending”. “The culture of work is slowly changing in ways that allow more workers increased levels of work autonomy, control, and flexibility.

That is why so many people are switching to the alternative work environment of coworking. Link Coworking has been providing Austinites this style of work for over a decade and, members have a mutual need and respect, showing the true magic of coworking.

Works Cited

Bacigalupo, Tony. “What Is Coworking?” What Is Coworking? Open Coworking, 21 May 2012. Web. 25 Oct. 2016. <http://whatiscoworking.com/>.

Buczynski, By Beth. “Why You’ll Never Find Coworking In The Dictionary.” Shareable. N.p., 14 June 2012. Web. 25 Oct. 2016. <http://www.shareable.net/blog/why-youll-never-find-coworking-in-the-dictionary>.

Gray, Amanda. ““The Most Recent Survey Research Shows That the Social Side of Coworking Spaces Is a Key Reason People Are Members”- Steve King, Emergent Research.” Workplace. The Social Workplace Conference, n.d. Web. 25 Oct. 2016. <http://workplace.social/most-recent-survey-research-shows-that-the-social-side-of-coworking-spaces-is-a-key-reason-people-are-members-steve-king-emergent-research/>.