May 21, 2015

The Direction of Change: Disruption from the Sharing Economy

From Ohrn: Change, change and more change . . . . From shareable:

New Report Highlights Disruptive Potential of Sharing Movement



The authors of the PwC report point to changing attitudes toward ownership as both cause and effect of the growth of the market-oriented sharing economy. The shift away from ownership as status symbol and toward the flexibility engendered by borrowing or renting is especially pronounced among adults between the ages of 18 and 24, who were twice as likely as older consumers to agree that “access is the new ownership.”

Of respondents familiar with the sharing sector, 81% agreed that sharing is less expensive than owning, and 43% affirmed that “owning today feels like a burden.”

As a result of the above, the report argues, consumer purchase behavior is changing, especially with respect to big-ticket items like cars and high-end clothing …

Executives are concerned that if they do not ride the sharing wave, they will be submerged during the transition to a new economic paradigm.

New York University Stern School of Business professor Arun Sundarajan compared the potential transformation to the change wrought by the mass production of personal automobiles. “The way we lived, the way we consumed, this whole ownership economy[,] much of it emerged out of driving our cars,” he said. “We built a big house in the suburbs, we moved there, we acquired stuff. The direction of change here is probably different, but its comparable in how profound it was and the societal implications.”

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