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who, what, how and why of the sharing economy
Sharing economy- who, what, how and why

Sharing economy- who, what, how and why

The Sharing Economy is simply an internet-mediated exchange of goods and services based on access instead of ownership.

Traditionally, Western capitalist economies are built on the importance of ownership. Concepts like ‘the American Dream’ and ‘the good life’ emphasize the social pride of owning houses, cars, boats, jewellery and large closets. With the sharing economy, consumers are now moving away from the ideal of owning through purchase, to temporary access of these goods and services through rental for a much smaller fee (Bardhi & Eckhardt 2012). The good news for businesses is that consumers still desire and demand these goods and services. The only caveat is that through the sharing economy they are changing how they demand them.

The sharing economy is vast, and it is almost impossible even at this point to accurately determine its scope across the globe. For instance, in 2016 Time Magazine, estimated that more than 10,000 businesses operate in the sharing economy. That number is bound to grow at an unpredictably fast pace.

Check out this ‘Spotlight on the sharing economy’ from PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) that provides an overview of how quickly the idea of the sharing economy is spreading and its benefits and challenges that we will explore further.


During this course we will discuss several industries that are heavily affected by the principles of the Sharing Economy.

Given what you know about some sharing economy brands, which industries do you think are impacted most?

Post your thoughts to the Comments area below.

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This article is from the free online course:

Business Futures: the Sharing Economy

RMIT University