Coworking News

The Code of Conduct IDEA Challenge

Apr 14, 2021
The Code of Conduct IDEA Challenge

We’re sponsoring the April 2021 Coworking IDEA Challenge! You can go directly to the challenge page for more details, and once you’ve participated, go ahead and share your results and takeaways on social media.

Almost two years ago, members of our team helped draft and distribute the Coworking Code of Conduct, a template designed to make it easier for coworking events to offer a meaningful, enforceable, and empowering code of conduct for attendees. The template was translated and published with the express permission to use, copy, and adapt for any organization hosting coworking events. Internally, we decided we would no longer sponsor events that didn’t have a code of conduct.

Why was this so important to us? When an organization doesn’t have a code of conduct, it’s easy for the status quo to become an obstacle to the full participation of all attendees. We want to be sure that we’re not supporting organizations that may be, however unintentionally, creating an environment that isn’t supporting groups that aren’t traditionally represented at coworking or tech conferences.

Over the past two years, we’ve seen codes of conduct adopted more widely than we could have imagined!

It turns out, members and attendees love having a clear list of values, organizers appreciate having a document that they can refer to when they’re unsure about how to handle a situation, and prospective members and attendees have a new tool by which they can asses community values.

One thing that has changed since we first released the Code of Conduct is the prevalence of online events. Though online-only events existed, they were not the primary event that we focused on. Now, they are the dominant form of interaction, and likely, there will continue to be a hybrid of online and offline events for the foreseeable future.

What hasn’t changed is the need for thorough, actionable, and enfranchising codes of conduct throughout the industry, whether it’s at events or in spaces themselves.

We’ll be working on adapting the Coworking Code of Conduct to this new reality, because online attendees deserve the same level of security as in-person attendees and we want to reflect the ways that people are interacting online.

In the meantime, the principles of an online event are similar to traditional ones, but with a greater focus on digital channels. We need to make sure that we account for ways that the internet enables harassment and unwanted interactions, and provide enforcement mechanisms that incorporate uniquely digital spaces.

Do you already have a code of conduct? If so, thank you for being a part of the movement! If not, there’s no better time to get involved and show your community how much you care.

Looking for more resources?

Diversity & Inclusion at Conferences and Events (DICE)

DICE offers a blueprint for conference leadership by outlining guidance for delivering “a representative and diverse set of speakers, perspectives, and attendees.” You can read their charter for more exhaustive information on their mission and methods, then apply to become DICE certified.

The Coworking IDEA Project

The idea here is to make coworking more Inclusive, Diverse, Equitable and Accessible. A powerful goal! We’re steadfast believers in the project, that’s why we’re sponsoring the April 2021 IDEA Challenge to update your membership agreement & code of conduct.


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