Socio‐economic profile and working conditions of freelancers in co‐working spaces and work collectives: evidence from the design sector in Greece

7 page Publication by Vasilis Avdikos & Athanasios Kalogeresis in Amsterdam, Netherland.
, ,
| Disclipline

Open This Publication
Abstract in English:

Third places, such as business incubators, co-working spaces and work collectives, represent a new ecosystem of collaborative working practices in the creative economy that alters significantly the spatial distribution of work and the notion of ‘workplace’. Collaborative workplaces emerged after the gradual collapse of the stable employment paradigm that was one of the main features of the Keynesian welfare state and as a response to precarious working conditions that were augmented during the recent economic crisis and the subsequent recession. The paper contributes to the critical understanding of these new geographies of workplace and working conditions that third places manifest. Using data from a large survey about the economics and the working conditions of Greek designers and from four interviews with freelancers in work collectives and facilitators of co-working spaces, the paper sheds light on the socio-economic profile and the working conditions of Greek freelance designers that use co-working spaces and work collectives as means of reducing precarious working conditions and personal–professional risks. The results show that designers in third places, in contrast to freelancers who use formal workplaces or work from home, work long hours with poor pay and a large proportion have no safety net with regard to social security. Third places can be enclaves of the shadow economy and of very specific precarious working conditions. On the other hand, third places help freelance designers become more embedded to business networks, both local and foreign, rather than working in isolation. Networking effects between freelancers and self-employed who choose to work in third places usually result in greater opportunities for outsourcing and subcontracting and in more exports.

Open Access? Yes

Journal Area
Publication Year 2016
Volume 49

ISSN/ISBN 1475-4762
DOI 10.1111/area.12279

English | Discipline Social Science