Unboxing the Sharing Economy. Opportunities and Risks of the Era of Collaboration

Ivana Pais (Editor), Davide Luca Arcidiacono (Editor), Alessandro Gandini (Editor)

Research output: Book/ReportOther report


The popularisation of the term Sharing Economy, commonly intended as a new socio-economic model based on collaboration and the socialization of value production especially through digital technologies, has revived the scholarly discussion on the extent and consequences of market exchange in society. The idea of a rising “sharing economy” is currently a hot topic in an international debate that builds on the emergence of peer-to-peer network exchanges that rely more on access than on property, on relations more than on appropriation, to call into question the sociological understanding of the relationship between the society and the market that goes back to authors such as Polanyi, Marx and Sombart. Sociological and also non-sociological analyses of the so-called Sharing Economy have multiplied quickly; however, this has produced so far a plurality of fragmented results, especially in the sociological literature. The aim of this monograph is therefore to bring together a selection of contributions that will help identify the analytical categories and indicators needed to interpret this phenomenon from a sociological perspective on a global scale. Through a collection of original empirical research on this topic, from Western and non-Western contexts, by both established and junior scholars, this monograph will make a pivotal contribution to the study of what themes, methods and issues characterise the rise of “sharing” as a socio-economic model and a new frontier of sociological research. In particular, this monograph aims to answer the following questions: what do we mean with “sharing economy”? What kind of positive innovations or possible criticalities might this socio-economic model bring? Does “sharing” really represent an alternative to capitalism, or an example of its transformation? In which areas, and how, is the way of doing business in society changing as a result of the diffusion of “sharing economies”?
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages197
Publication statusPublished - 2018


  • collaborative economy
  • sharing economy


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