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How Remote Work Can Create Jobs And Happier Futures In Rural Locations

How Remote Work Can Create Jobs And Happier Futures In Rural Locations

How Remote Work Can Create Jobs And Happier Futures In Rural Locations

How Remote Work Can Create Jobs And Happier Futures In Rural Locations

Excerpt from allwork.space

At the repeople remote work event in the Canary Islands, Grow Remote’s Tracy Keogh spoke about how remote work and digital development can make a positive socio-economic impact in rural Ireland.

  • Europe’s largest remote work conference, repeople, recently took place in the Canary Islands. 
  • One panel focused on the question: Can virtual work really create a positive socio-economic impact worldwide? 
  • Grow Remote’s Tracy Keogh led the response, and explained how their approach is bringing digital development and brighter futures to rural locations.

Home to more than 100 coworking and coliving spaces, the Canary Islands have become one of the most important remote worker and digital nomad destinations in the world. It’s no surprise that it has also become a favorite location for company retreats as well as a meeting point for distributed companies and teleworkers. 

The question put to them by energetic and playful host David Blay Tapia is an intriguing one. Can virtual work really create a positive socio-economic impact worldwide?  

Grow Remote developed from a WhatsApp group into a non-profit organization. As Tracy recalls, “We wondered why we had never heard about GitLab, Automattic, and others who would employ us as a permanent full-time employee (as opposed to offering us freelance work) regardless of a location.” This panel showed the diversity of teleworking with Hannah explaining how entrepreneurs can set up an online community in Estonia in a single day. 

But remote work is about protecting traditions as much as embracing modern change.  

Nacho Rodriguez wants the Canary Islands to retain local talent as much as attract foreign digital nomads. “La Palma is growing old,” he warns. “There is no university. The young leave and never come back. The two big cities on the islands concentrate all the work. Why not base yourself in Gran Canaria’s beautiful Tejeda? You don’t want to commute. The road is really windy.” 

Tracy feels the same about rural Ireland. She talks about Google’s carbon-neutral building and wonders if that’s really more energy efficient than 600 people working in their own homes.  

Tracy references an early event in Limerick where locals’ faces “lit up” when they were told they could get jobs with parental and sick leave and not have to commute to a big city to do so. 

 

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