9to5 – Wir nennen es Arbeit


In the summer of 2007 we organized the festival 9 to 5 – Wir nennen es Arbeit. Over the course of three nights and two days a large and diverse group of participants explored new forms of collaboration and co-working.


With the evolution of the internet and its tools for digital production and collaboration, a new class of freelancers emerged in the early 2000s, labeled "digital bohemians" by Holm Friebe and Sascha Lobo in their bestseller Wir nennen es Arbeit. We set out to bring these people together at a festival in Berlin's then-new space for arts and ideas, Radialsystem V. For three nights, from 9pm to 5am, the festival offered a broad variety of discussions, lectures, workshops, concerts, performances, and entertainment, while during the day participants could work, sleep, and socialize at the festival site. Over fifty German and international artists and speakers explored the opportunities of new forms of self-employment and collaboration, and some 1,500 guests attended the festival. 9 to 5 had an enormous impact and in essence kicked off the German co-working movement. The event received wide media attention and popularity. According to the Frankfurter Rundschau, "The festival initiators have struck a nerve, namely the issue of a necessary restructuring of the work environment."


ZIA was responsible for the idea, development, programming, and production of the entire festival; over sixty people were involved in the organization.