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Room 2.102, Wednesday 2.15 - 5.45 pm (every 2 weeks)

The Sharing Economy

Post-Capitalist Alternative or Neoliberalization of Everyday Life?

Within the last years, a broad spectrum of sharing phenomena has emerged that challenge established perceptions of property: Car-sharing services like DriveNow increasingly substitute traditional car-ownership; hospitality networks like Airbnb turn into serious competitors to hotels; and peer-to-peer lending platforms like Whyownit offer alternatives to buying household appliances. The sharing econo- my is mostly heralded as a solution to manifold problems: It not only strengthens communities by enhancing alternative, non-market based modes of transaction, but also curbs the depletion of scarce goods and reduces pollution and conges- tion. Skeptical voices that perceive the sharing economy as a new form of hyper- capitalism and neoliberalization of everyday life so far remain rare. By exploring the variety of sharing phenomena (from car-sharing to pet-sharing), this course will critically explore the ambivalences of the emerging economy.