The idyllic Balinese town of Ubud recently saw the launch of the second Coworking Unconference Asia (CUAsia). Initiated by Hubud: Ubud Coworking & Community Space, the event brought together ‘the movers and shakers from the world of coworking and innovation in Asia and beyond’ to explore how professionals ‘can learn, work, and live in this new collaborative economy’.
Asian coworking spaces are currently growing rapidly in numbers, with Singapore being home to 45 coworking spaces. There is also the rise of “coworkation” spaces in places such as Bali itself, Koh Lanta, and Jeju island.
“Asia has seen an explosion of growth in coworking over the last 12 months, with new spaces opening every week. It’s fascinating to see how different spaces are reacting to the challenges and opportunities posed by this new world of work,” said Steve Munroe, Founder of Hubud.
Hosted at various locations in Bali, from Hubud to the Green School, the event was held on February 24-28.
It was attended by 220 people from 31 countries (including the US and Mongolia), a rise from last year’s number of 135 attendees.
The CUAsia event itself covered a wide range of subjects.
It began with pre-event workshops with two topics, how to manage a coworking space (with mentors Alex Hillman of Indy Hall Philadelphia, Grace Sai of the Hub Singapore, and Amarit Charoenphan of Hubba Thailand) and the future of coworking spaces in Indonesia. The second workshop was organised joinly with Kumpul Coworking Space, with support from the government’s BEKRAF (Creative Economy Agency).
The main event itself includes keynote speeches from mentors and visionaries in the world of coworking and innovation spaces in Asia, panel discussions, and even debate sessions on the future of work. It invited speakers such as Brad Krauskopf from Third Spaces Group, Jonathan O’Byrne from Collective Works, and Carsten Foertsch, founder of Deskmag.
Meanwhile, the second day of the event allows attendees to set the agenda and discussion where they joined in 24 unconference sessions, sharing collective experiences in designing the future of work.
At the end of the event, attendees shared different views on the business models of the future. As coworking spaces across Asia¬ Pacific becomes increasingly competitive, spaces will increasingly diverge in strategy, offering more choices to a new wave of workers.
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Image Credit: Hubud