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The COVID-19 pandemic and the Future of Working Spaces Edited volume Routledge-RSA Regions & Cities Book Series – Regions, Cities and Covid-19. Edited by Ilaria Mariotti (IT), Mina Di Marino (NO) and Pavel Bednář (CZ).

The 17 book chapters were co-authored by 46 COST members. The Routledge book proposal was accepted last November 2020.

The edited volume aims to present a compendium of emerging and innovative studies on the proliferation of new working spaces (NWS), both formal and informal (such as co-working spaces, maker spaces, Fab labs, public libraries and coffeeshops), and their role under and post Covid-19 pandemic in the urban and regional development and planning.

The book aims to present an original and interdisciplinary approach to NWS by: i) situating debate in the context of COVID-19 pandemic which has transformed NWS business models and everyday work life of its owners and users by (the enforced both physical and social distancing, and limited movement and mobility); ii) re-positioning and rethinking the debate on NWS in the socio-economic and planning context and comparing conditions between ex-ante and post COVID-19 pandemic; iii) providing new directions for the urban and regional development and resilience to the COVID-19 pandemic , and their economic impacts considering new ways of (distance) working and living ; iv) drawing on expertise of both leading international scholars which have been studying the proliferation of NWS in the last decade, and young and talented researchers resulting in total 48 co-authors, (48 of them are currently involved in the COST Action CA18214); v) presenting selected comparative case studies amongst the 33 mostly developed countries which are involved in the CA18214, i.e. European countries, showing their diversity based on both their horizontal position in Europe (core and peripheral countries) and previous economic development trajectory – Western and Eastern Europe reflecting a hierarchical spatial diffusion of innovations; vi) providing and combining multiple theoretical and analytical approaches to NWS from different disciplines (such as urban and regional economics, economic geography, urban and regional planning, human geography, architecture and environmental planning).

The edited volume aims to contribute to the understanding of the theoretical and practical implications of the NWS for our society, economy and urban and regional planning within post-COVID-19 pandemic conditions, considering the growth and use of emerging workplaces and new work life of people.

The existing publications on the NWS have not yet covered the above aspects within an interdisciplinary debate. There is a need for new knowledge of the impacts of COVID-19 on NWS and the scenarios in the post-pandemic situation. The existing debate is predominantly focused on the core and metropolitan areas, while a more comprehensive understanding of the phenomenon that covers their counterparts – peripheral and rural areas is still missing, as well as the wider framework of new ways of working. The materials presented in this book are mainly original and have not yet been published.