Sharing is Caring? Can local practice turn into transformative change in a collaborative economy? New insights on innovative practices, sustainability potentials and governance implications

September 2, 2020 12:00 - 1:30

Location: Virtual Room 1


Collaborative approaches to using and reusing of products and services have a prominent place in the discussion about concepts of circular economy transition. A collaborate economy, where products and services are better shared and reused and where waste is avoided to the extent possible bears immense sustainability potential. Already, many cities function as the laboratories of change with respect to collaborative practices. However, what is needed to make such collaborative economy approaches really become a new paradigm of economic and societal life? What is the potential and what are the limitations? This panel will examine these questions by looking particularly at the area of food consumption, mobility practices, shared accommodation and sharing physical goods in urban contexts. A focus on food consumption, for example, offers a double benefit: food consumption and food security are important sustainability issues of global concern – innovative approaches to sustainable consumption that both support sustainable production and ensure waste prevention are needed. Similarly, we witness a growing shared economy comprising mobility, goods, and services, in response to wider environmental concerns. Is a focus on increased efficiency the solution to a transition to a sustainable future? What is the importance of the social and cultural contexts?
A focus on these matters can help us shed fresh light on the innovation potentials of sharing, particularly in an urban context, and respective governance and institutional arrangements.
The panel discussion will bring together three ERC funded projects that address this complex challenge from diverse perspectives and with the help of different theoretical and methodological approaches. A discussion of social, organisational, institutional and sustainability factors will help to elaborate the potential of sharing economies and whether local action can scale to towards real transformative change.

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