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Serbia's Coworking Pioneers

Nova Iskra

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The team at Nova Iskra also realized the many challenges younger people face when looking for a community, a work place and of course, the most essential part, a job. 

“At this point we are somewhere in between a coworking space and an incubator,” said Radenković. “We are trying to put together a space where our members can work together and also work with us on the realization of our mission.”

Nova Iskra offers a few selected programs, such as the “Designer Lab”, which offers desk space and programs to aid with creative development, and the “Creative Hub” that uses an extended network of professional designers from the fields of furniture to graphic design.  There is also the ”Industry Hub” which branches into educational programs in Serbia and the surrounding region, connecting members to professional contacts.

“Ultimately we aim to combine the creative side to the business and manufacturing sector. This is not just coming from a business idea but responding to a need from the young creatives, because for them it is almost impossible for them to get their first job here,” said Bobić. 

In order to remedy this, the programs offered at Nova Iskra require members to apply or to be invited, giving serious deisgners the chance to build a solid network and hone their design skills. Nova Iskra is now on its way to expanding, by making partnerships with like-minded programs, to offering educational support through a series of workshops, and also helping their core team build international partnerships. 

Smart Office is also catching the eyes of businesses and investors as well. Mijatov explained that for the moment he is happy that he can pay the bills, and has seen so many diverse clients come through. But there are also plans for the future.

“The government is trying to make some incubator spaces, and they asked me to maybe merge with them. I also have met with a landlord who wants to have a creative space. He saw the potential in my story, and wants my input. There will be lectures, exhibitions, mini concerts. Having a coworking zone attached would be perfect. It would not only bring in a bit of money to support the space in general, but also new creative ideas. We will see what happens

Both Smart Office and Nova Iskra have used their unique approach to tackle economic issues, reevaluate and reeducate. Both projects recognize that sharing ideas and empowering those around you is the essential step to success.

“Everybody is working together, and it’s really beautiful that everyone can have their own projects, but that they can also bring new ideas. Coworking is healthy for your mind,” said Mijatov

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