On February 5th the second Coworking Africa meetup took place at the Design Bank in Cape Town, bringing with it inspiring presentations from influencers and innovators from the South African community. In order to continue to develop we are sharing with you, our beloved community, the keynote presentations from the event.
Ian Merrington from one of South Africa’s oldest innovation hubs, The Barn, shared with Coworking Africa some important insights regarding growth and sustainability within the tech and innovation sector. His presentation “How Important is Coworking to the Creation of a Thriving Ecosystem of digital Entrepreneurs” begged the question: What can we do as a community to make these growing sectors self-sufficient and long lasting.
The presentation highlighted the most important steps innovators and coworkers need to take to create such a community, like functional infrastructure that also includes strong internet connectivity. Once this is established it is essential to nurture the environment, making room for personal connections productivity and open collaboration. Another important focus is to have a mix of tenants, establishing key partnerships, as the Barn has done with big players like Barclays, Bitcoin Academy, and Telekom.
Already 15 years old, The Barn covers the basics, and today they strive towards developing a globally competitive tech and innovation sector, that will ultimately enable sustainable economic growth, in addition to an increase in job opportunities.
As the coworking movement has greatly advanced, there are more options than ever before that we can use to develop a strong ecosystem. With the right mix of tenants, support and specialized hubs Ian shows up the elements he predicts will creative a thriving collaborative ecosystem in 2016!