The second edition of the Cross Border Coworking Conference has begun

11.10.2022

More than 100 people gathered in Jahorina on Tuesday, October 11th 2022. when the program of the Second edition of the Cross Border Coworking Conference, dedicated to the promotion of the coworking concept and the promotion of the region as a destination for digital nomads, started.

“Today we introduced ourselves here as one of the donors of this very important Conference in Jahorina. We have been looking forward to be a part of this Conference for a long time. We are glad to see that the interest is very high and as donors we are also glad to see a good response and attendance at the Conference. Coworking, globally, is the main topic that is being talked about nowdays and it is also one story that I am sure has already slowly taken root here in the region, which, by the way, is beautiful and can offer a lot to digital nomads in terms of coworking. In order to attract digital nomads, we must have two things: one we already have- that is the beautiful nature; the other thing is our consciousness, which we must change in the sense of accepting new technologies and new ways of working, and also to offer better conditions to everyone who wants to come to our region and work here,” said project manager of the Western Balkans Fund, Mr. Fjordi Bisha to media.

The organizers of the conference addressed the media and emphasized the importance of cooperation and partnership between the countries of the region.

“For the second year in a row, we are organizing this event, which is, we can say once again, very successful. We have 19 speakers from more than 10 different countries and more than 100 participants, which speaks volumes about the importance of the conference itself. We recognized that connecting the countries of the region is important for the coworking space, but also for attracting digital nomads. It is important that we raise the awareness of the local community about this topic, and then through joint initiatives and the creation of quality offers for digital nomads, we achieve our goals”, Ana Bogdanović from INTERA Technology Park told the media.

“We are one of the partners in the organization of the Cross Border Coworking Conference, and we cooperate a lot with the INTERA Technology Park and the Proaktiv organization from Niš. Connection is everything, the strength of my organization lies in the large number of partnerships and connections with the region. We want to offer the region reachble to digital nomads and attract more and more of them with joint efforts. We have several trump cards – beautiful countries with wonderful nature, hospitable people, but what is most important for digital nomads – affordable prices of living expences,” Djordje Brkuljan from the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center Tehnopolis commented on the conference.

“We are too small market to talk about each country individually, so it is already a story about the whole region. We have a lot to offer, from people, hospitality, cultural and historical monuments, food, proximity to the airport, but we all have to make a little more effort. The state should give privileges in terms of special visas, residence conditions for nomads, then the local self-government should attract them through tourism content, and we as organizations should be more open, more visible. This is the beginning, the good thing is that the people we see are people who cooperate well from the start”, Nenad Stojanovic from the organization Proaktiv spoked about the importance of cooperation.

The conference started with welcoming speeches in which Mr. Vedran Simunovic, executive director of INTERA Technology Park, Mr. Gjergj Murra, executive director of the Western Balkans Fund and Ms. Biljana Scepanovic, Minister of Science and Technological Development of Montenegro, addressed the attendees.

“I am here for the first time and I am very glad that I had the opportunity to attend this important Conference for the entire region. In Montenegro, we have already done a lot, from legal regulations, through program and strategic documents, in order to attract nomads and create better conditions for their arrival and stay in Montenegro. There is more to be done, and that is why I believe that the future is also an advantage in the association of the countries of the region, given that we have similar comparative advantages in relation to other parts of the world – in terms of beautiful nature, cheap living costs and warm relations between people. Compared to last year, a lot has improved. We adopted a document for attracting nomads for the period until 2025, and during the summer, changes were made to the Law on Foreigners that will enable digital nomads to obtain visas for their stay in Montenegro,” Minister Scepanovic told the media.

The participants were introduced to the conference program by Tamara Kojic, who highlighted the potential for attracting digital nomads hidden in the region. The participants are expecting almost seven hours of the program, during which the speakers, through presentations, panel discussions and workshops, will get on the subject of needs of digital nomads, the current resources of the region, opportunities for cooperation, ways to further develop the region, coworking space as a tool for community development, the importance of connecting digital nomads and local communities, experiences of digital nomads and positive examples from around the world.

“I hope that Bosnia and Herzegovina will be a trendsetter when it comes to digital trends in the Balkans, together with other regions. The most important thing is to change consciousness of people because we are not typical tourists. Digital nomads stay longer and like to integrate into the local community and that’s the main message I want to share. My message to everyone in B&H, who wants to attract digital nomads, is to listen to them, to ask, to be interested in everything they need, because they are tourists who are not standard tourists, and only by recognizing their needs you can understand what is that they need.

Bosnia and Herzegovina must change a little faster in this regard, because all countries are looking for digital nomads to come to their countries, so you have to hurry”, Rowena Hennigan sent a clear message, who is a digital nomad herself, and today she is one of the speakers at Conference.

Earlier in the evening, the participants had the opportunity to get to know each other through speed networking and a cocktail party, which again this year resulted in the exchange of experiences and information on this current topic in a somehow more relaxed environment.

Cross Border Coworking Conference 2022 is organized by INTERA Technology Park, Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center Tehnopolis and Proaktiv through the Cross Border Coworking Cooperation project financed by the Western Balkans Fund and the European Union within the Call for Regional Project Proposals “Support to the Promotion of Civil Society regional activities in the Western Balkans”. The organization of the Conference was supported by the Swiss Entrepreneurship Program and the companies Salto Systems, Elektroprivreda Crne Gore, NSoft and ZenDev, and the media sponsors are Dnevni avaz, Bljesak, Nezavisne novine, Večernji list, RDV and Radio Sarajevo.

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