Together with the VU Amsterdam Network Institute Aurora universities central office organised the workshop on Digital Nomads – Living in a Society of Digital Employees at the Neth-ER premises in Brussels on 14 June 2022. The workshop addressed how society, employers and employees may deal with the new way of working in the digital society, and how to contribute from a scientific perspective. It has been attended by policy-makers from the European Commission, 12 scientists from Aurora universities and its central office and three people representating employees, policy making and digital nomads.
Background: The Covid-19 pandemic has inspired an increasing number of employees to work from a different country where their organisation is located. There are several structural factors in society that may further spur the number of digital nomads in Europe, such as an increased desire among employees for autonomy and flexibility in balancing professional and private life, and the advent of digital technologies and intermediary companies that enable a nomadic lifestyle. The digital nomads trend provides scientists, strategists and policy-makers with new technological, organisational, legal, ethical, economical and socio-cultural challenges.
Question: How can current and future research provide input to strategies and policies, and vice versa?
Aim: The aim of this workshop was to bundle expertise from ambitious and excellent scientists from various disciplines to discuss challenges related to digital nomads with European policy-makers, and provide directions for the European Commission’s Research & Innovation programs.
Results: Certain actions have been identified that are needed from policy-makers and scientists. This will result in a white paper and policy input for the European Commission. The workshop also aimed to foster new contacts between researchers and policy-makers from the European Commission and to provide opportunities for research collaborations. The academic attendees expressed their interest to create an Aurora network of experts related to this topic.