The Collaborative Economy in the United States

Every day the collaborative economy grows a little more. Every time you look it seems as though there is a new company taking part in what some even call the sharing economy. From ridesharing services, like Uber and Lyft, and services that help you complete tasks like TaskRabbit, to renting like right here on Roomlala, there is no part of the sharing economy that has been left untouched since its birth.

A phenomenon born in the US The collaborative economy’s birth was in the United States. It was first mentioned by two sociologists, Marcus Felson and Joe L. Spaeth in 1978 when they analyzed the then popular practice of carpooling.

Thirty years later, the phrase reappeared in the journal Leisure Reports, in which Ray Algar spoke of the power that consumers have when they group services together. Following that report, Rachel Bostman and Roo Rogers referenced the subject in their 2010 book: What's mine is yours: The Rise of Collaborative Consumption.

In fact, the concept of sharing, exchange of goods between people has existed for quite some time, but new technologies and the popularity of the internet has made the services more popular than ever before. Now people can carpool not just with people they know, but the entire world. The size of communities have grown to have no boundaries and this is by far one of the most important elements in the development of the collaborative economy.

According to figures from Lendacademy, an American loan and exchange site that was born out of the sharing economy, nearly $500 million of money has been moved in the US through the sharing economy. Couch-surfing is another fine example. Nearly 3 million people around the world have taken part in hosting others in 253 countries. Car sharing services alone represent $ 3.3 billion in 2013 and that’s just on the North American continent. In recent years, over 200 startups that are part of the sharing economy have taken advantage fo $2 billion dollars in funding.

The great American actors of collaborative consumption According to a study reported in The Sharing Economy in 2013, 52% of Americans have shared or borrowed everyday objects to someone else during the 2 previous years, and 83% say they would do it more often if "sharing was easier." The United States is one of the main bastions of collaborative consumption.

The collaborative economy actually applies to multiple sectors:

  • Transport (Sidecar, Uber, Lyft)
  • Exchange of products in particular (99dresses, Artsicle)
  • rental or exchange of housing between individuals (Airbnb, Roomorama, HomeExchange)
  • Platforms crowdfunding (Kickstarter, LendingClub)
  • Education (Udemy, Chegg)
  • Services provided to individuals (Freelancer, TaskRabbit, Zaarly)

TaskRabbit allows you, for example, to find neighbors able to perform common tasks at home, such as crafts..You set the price and you find a number of people close to you free the desired date: it is ideal if your schedule is loaded!

Another original service Coursera, a platform to deliver online courses for all. These courses from the best universities in the world.

Know that even though Roomlala is a French-born site, we also offer accommodation listings to USA! Do you want to take part in the collaborative economy? If you have a spare room at home, do not hesitate to find a student to come fill the space using Roomlala. You’ll make some profits and allow them to find an accommodation at a lower than average cost!