Coliving

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Description

By Jessica Reeder:

"The underlying concept of coliving will be nothing new to anyone who’s had roommates: sharing a house, sharing the rent, living with near-strangers for a shared purpose. “Roommate situations are typically based on who can afford to pay the rent and who has one or two things in common,” says Chelsea Rustrum, an entrepreneur and coliving advocate. In a coliving home, the connections are stronger. Even if residents don’t know each other prior to moving in, “we have this vision in common of how we want to change the world,” she says.

Inspired entrepreneurialism is a central tenet. Residents are carefully chosen for their ambitions and ideas, and are often working on individual projects. “We want to be around people who want to make a difference,” says Schingler. But “making a difference” comes with infinite possibilities. Within a single house there may be scientists, artists, entrepreneurs, engineers and everything in between.

Coliving is influenced heavily by coworking, a practice in which independent professionals share a workspace rather than working individually at home. With no boss, no distractions and a building full of inspiring peers, synergy is the quick result of this separate-yet-together environment.

Coliving spaces often include a coworking area. For example: TheGlint, a hilltop townhouse in San Francisco’s Twin Peaks, has a dedicated space furnished with desks and computers. But “it’s not just a live-in coworking space,” says TheGlint cofounder Damian Madray. He points to events like ArtFlux, a “participatory art experience” hosted in TheGlint’s gallery. Coliving houses regularly host events, from lectures to dance parties to hackathons, all designed to enhance creativity, professional development and good old-fashioned networking. Serendipity and collaboration abound.

The coliving movement may freely use terms like “commune” and “cooperative”, but this ain’t your grandma’s commune. Contemporary coliving builds on communal living practices, embracing a networked tech, business and science-fueled culture built upon innovation and realizing a better world through collaborative design." (http://www.shareable.net/blog/hacking-home-coliving-reinvents-communal-living-for-a-networked-generation?)


Example

By Jessica Reeder:

"In 2006, Jessy Kate Schingler and four other young engineers landed jobs at NASA’s Ames Research Center. They suddenly needed a place to live in Silicon Valley, but rather than opt for cheap housing with a long commute, they pooled their resources and rented a palatial 5,000 square foot property in Cupertino. The Rainbow Mansion was born.

It was more than just a luxury home full of brilliant young minds. Dubbed “an intentional community”, The Rainbow Mansion was an experiment in a new type of cohabitation. The house began hosting hackathons and salons in its library, inviting Silicon Valley’s best and brightest to participate. “Right away it set itself in motion,” Schingler says. “It had this sort of accidental mystique about it.”

In the six years since, the Rainbow Mansion has housed 60 people from 12 countries, along with employees from Google, Apple and Tesla. One of Schingler’s cofounders, Chris Kemp, became CTO of IT at NASA. And Schingler herself has become an advocate of coliving, the practice of bringing extraordinary people under one roof to live, work and change the world together." (http://www.shareable.net/blog/hacking-home-coliving-reinvents-communal-living-for-a-networked-generation?)


Examples cited by Deskmag [1]: Nomadbase, Cyberhippietotalism [2], Unmonastery [3], and Mutinerie#s Coworking Percheron and Copass

Discussion

Governance

By Jessica Reeder:

"Coliving has clear similarities to traditional communes and co-ops. Langton Labs, in particular, bears a strong resemblance to 20th-century cooperative living. It has a flat organizational structure, and most decisions are made on a group email list. “In building a community, we didn't pick an existing model and emulate it,” says Todd Huffman. “We designed everything from the ground up, and in doing so, have ended up evolving in parallel and developing mechanisms that are very similar to cooperatives or communes.”

Unlike many prior communal living experiments, coliving spaces are externally oriented. They’re generally located in urban areas, often open to the public on a regular basis, and easy to move in and out of. The ideas brewing behind these doors are quickly realized and implemented in the world outside.

Much of this is related to the 21st-century vision of sharing, which allows for a high level of individualism and experimentation. Previous community models were focused on equality, with participants renouncing privileges to adopt a group-oriented mentality. In today’s open-source world, collaboration relies on contributions from a diverse pool of individuals, and welcomes exceptionality.

This phenomenon occurs across human culture: As our social organization has morphed from tight-knit groups to loose, technology-driven networks, we are supporting each other more and competing less. Sociologist Barry Wellman calls this networked individualism: our newfound ability to work together without losing sight of our internal goals.

Accordingly, the coliving movement seeks out exceptional people, asking them not to give themselves up to a single cause, but to support each other’s exceptionality. This may be the key to a new definition of “home,” one which provides comfort and friends along with inspiration and innovation.

As our social and professional landscapes shift, our concept of home is shifting too. By rebuilding their homes on a foundation of creative collaboration, coliving participants may next redefine the world by the same terms." (http://www.shareable.net/blog/hacking-home-coliving-reinvents-communal-living-for-a-networked-generation?)


How do these workspaces function

Rémy Cagnol:

"Although they recognize the same reality, all of these spaces will not be managed in the same way and also attempt to encourage community interaction. "We just have to experiment in this area," said Kasper Souren, the founder and former coordinator of Couchsurfing.

In the process of creating a network of places, he created Nomadbase, the still experimental version of a network designed to connect travelers to a group of living spaces for nomads that are found throughout the world.Kasper and David agree that because it is a kind of social experiment, the founder is sometimes put in the unwanted position of "passive / aggressive 
dictator." This happens because he/she wants to be sure the Space functions in the best possible way.

When asked as a good hacker, if he holds a "log" of what is happening, David explained he wants to quantify everything: the use of space, the energy consumption and every action that takes place in the house. "I want to create a society based on the same ideal as hippies, but we must also be able to pay for the space and create interesting things." Finally, the processing of all data and metrics related to the use of space is, according to David, a way to ensure that the area is functioning properly.

According to Nadia, analyzing people metrics in the space is not the right approach. As Antoine said about himself in his room, as in many coworking spaces, there is no written statement telling how each will contribute to the community rules. Within a community of coworking, it is even possible to have some conflicting interests. Three brothers and a close friend deal with Mutinerie, "I think people feel that family spirit is in our community," explained Aintoine.

Indeed, when comparing the Nomadbase and Cyberhippietotalism, to Unmonastery and Mutinerie, we see that communities can be significantly different. And our approach will undoubtedly differ when it comes to the importance that's given to the technology found in these new places to live.

But it's a safe bet that the digital nomads can benefit from these experiences. Much like pollinating bees will disseminate their knowledge they have acquired from all the hives that they visit, nomads will do the same with the information collected within the new places where one can live and work together differently." (http://www.deskmag.com/en/OuiShare-Fest-experiment-coworking-coliving-hackerspace-towards-new-lifestyles-beyond-the-border-lif/2)



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