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  • 작성자 사진Noh Hyun-jin

[Life Style] Sharing Economy Models and Examples

No. 152 / Jun 7, 2021

The concept of the sharing economy was introduced by American jurist Lawrence Lessig, in his 2008 book, Remix: Making Art and Commerce Thrive in the Hybrid Economy. It refers to an economy based on collaborative consumption: one that shares products that are produced once and aims to reduce social costs while fostering efficient resource utilization.

The sharing economy is now used in a broader sense than it initially was, and can be divided into 4 models depending on the mode of transaction. First is the Business-to-Consumer (B2C) model. In this framework, lenders are companies, and the users are individuals. Companies lend their assets to individuals. This can be seen as an upgrade from traditional rental services. For instance, shared offices, shared kitchens, and shared mobility services that share cars or kickboards owned by a company (e.g., Green Car) fall under the B2C model. Second, the Peer-to-Peer (P2P) model is the most representative of the sharing economy, and refers to the sharing of necessary goods or services between individuals. Shared accommodations such as share houses, Airbnb, and shared mobility services that use private cars (e.g., Uber) are some famous examples of P2P models. However, Brokerage platforms are often used under this model, so it is also known as the platform economy. This includes crowdfunding platforms like Wadiz and transaction platforms like Danggeun Market. Third is the Consumer-to-Business (C2B) model. This approach also uses brokerage platforms but connects professional workers with companies that need their abilities. This includes labor brokerage platforms. The freelancing platform, Upwork, is an example that uses a C2B model. Finally, the Business-to-Business (B2B) model is employed when companies to use their assets as trading resources.

Here, it is necessary to consider some easy, highly visible examples. The Ajou Globe (The AG) will discuss 3 kinds of shared economy services that readers may recognize. First, there is shared accommodation. The business of share houses is currently booming in university districts, as it can provide tenants with a sense of safety, affordable rent, and appeal to their curiosity about living with a variety of people. Indeed, there are many such accommodations for men and women around Ajou University. Notably, share houses with special themes appear to be an emerging trend. Second, there is shared mobility. In Korea, it is illegal to use domestic cars for paid transportation, which disallows the use of private car sharing services such as Uber. However, kickboard sharing services are especially popular among local university students. The final example to be discussed is shared knowledge and talent. Platforms where people provide their own educational instruction, such as Class101 and Taling, are examples of this. K-MOOC, a platform that shares university lectures, is another.

The sharing economy developed largely as a product or outcome of information and communication technology (ICT) for platforms, environmental consciousness, and the influence of Millenium Generation and Generation Z (Generation MZ), who are believed to value experience over ownership. Recently, the development of the sharing economy has slowed down due to the influence of COVID-19, but its progression is expected to continue due to people’s consistent interest.


By Noh Hyun-jin, AG Cub Reporter

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