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As an active member from Mexico and partially based there and as the director of an organization in Latin America, I would like to initiate a discussion on the factors to consider when establishing coworking spaces in LMICs, particularly in Mexico

I am convinced of the significant value that emerging communities gain from having the opportunity to interact with the international community. The fellowship organized in Mexico in 2022 demonstrated to me the benefits for people from underrepresented communities and the impact on their careers. 

However, given the process of the recent coworking space proposal in Mexico (not by Mexicans), my impression is that the needs of the local community are not being heard, but maybe I am not understanding which should be the most important thing to take into account, and my bias as a local is too high.

My impression is that the opinion of the locals was not taken into account, which makes me feel very uncomfortable. So, I have several questions that I believe need discussion and may help me to understand the situation better

1. Should EA local members be involved in the decision-making process for establishing and operating what could be the only space in Mexico for contact with the international community, or could this be decided solely by foreign individuals?
2. Should the establishment of new coworking spaces take into account their positive impact on local EA communities, or is it considered too costly and "distracting"?
3. How important is it to consider local culture and context when choosing the most suitable space?
4. For foreigners potentially interested in working in Mexico for a few months, could a space with 20% less comfort and design change your decision?

Regarding the coworking space proposed in Mexico, there have been prior discussions and many of us locals find it unsuitable for work as it is located in a gentrified neighborhood where local people face constant discrimination (This coworking space in particular has to also incidents reported). 

On the other hand, it is a space with many amenities and is popular among some EAs who visit Mexico. 

As the director of an organization in Latin America, with all staff members from Mexico and students from various parts of Latin America, I am interested in the cost of that particular space. Is it accessible for Latin American organizations, or are the prices prohibitive to our budget and priorities, thereby preventing us from working in a space alongside other organizations and EA-aligned individuals? Given the current public prices for the proposed coworking, I would have to allocate at least twice as many resources as I currently do and cut the budget from another area.

Furthermore, from the perspective of external optics, I am unsure if I would be comfortable with my organization being located in that workspace, as it could affect our collaborations with public entities like UNAM (the most important university in Mexico and the second in Latin America) and potentially invite negative criticism like those recently seen at EAGx LATAM and in some Spanish-language media outlets.

I understand that the AI Fellowship is not targeted at people from Mexico and uses this space to prioritize the needs of its program. However, proposing it as the coworking space in Mexico raises the questions mentioned above, and I would appreciate a broader community perspective to make the best decisions. I believe that there are other good options that allow us locals to be included.




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However, given the process of the recent coworking space proposal in Mexico

This link just points directly back to this post - what did you have in mind?

My mistake, now this is the correct link. Thanks for noticing

Creo que es un tema difícil de tratar sin herir susceptibilidades, me he limitado hasta el momento a emitir un comentario, pues quiero que en caso de hacerlo este sea lo mas objetivo posible, y hay algunas situaciones que desconozco. Sin embargo algo que me gusta de Altruismo Eficaz es ver como abordan las situaciones con el único propósito de buscar lo mejor  en un ambiente de respeto.

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