There has been a lot of talk in Germany about the problem of rural depopulation as more and more people head for the larger cities. But according to a study carried out by the Berlin Institute for Population and Development, others are taking advantage of the possibilities for remote working and moving to so-called urban villages.
The study looked at 18 communal living projects around Berlin, Dresden and Leipzig.
“Many of these people are digital nomads who can do their laptop-based work just as well in Brandenburg as in Berlin,” says the institute director Reiner Klingholz.
Some of the villages concerned have co-working spaces open to all of the urban exiles, many of whom wanted to move to the countryside to raise families.
Nonetheless, this micro-trend remains very much the exception to the rule, as the numbers of those forsaking urban areas is dwarfed by that of people moving to larger cities.
House in the “urban village” Meerleben © Christopher Lewis