Today the success stories of AirBnB, BlaBlaCar, Lyft, and others are already well known. The rise of these initiatives is just one side of the sharing economy. In many neighborhoods, peer-initiatives are flourishing. Something new is happening - the rise of active citizenship, people identifying themselves with their neighborhood, working on social cohesion - a renaissance of neighborhoods and bringing people together who believe in each other.
Top image: Pod, open source stool, by Samuel Javelle. Article cross-posted from MakingSociety.
Open source furniture design is popping up these days. Open Design means mainly two things: documentation is shared freely so that users can make their own models, furnitures are made with digital fabrication and can be reproduce in a makerspace or FabLab.
Recess is supposed to be fun; a chance to play and connect with friends. But what about the kids who feel left out? How can they let other kids, who may be feeling lonely too, know that they’d like to play? One second grader, Christian Bucks from York, Pennsylvania, came up with an innovative solution: the Buddy Bench.
Whether you're a freelancer or traditional worker that travels a lot, finding both an open desk and a welcoming community is now easier than ever. Over the past few years, many different platforms for accessing shared workspaces have emerged. But how do you decide which one to use?
Coworking continues to rise in popularity across the globe, especially among freelancers and startups who want the benefits of community without the hassle and cost of negotiating leases and building out spaces.
According to the 2013 Global Coworking Census, nearly 2,500 coworking sites in eighty countries existed as of February 2013, and that number is expected to grow as technology continues to evolve and facilitate new, more decentralized business models.
In order for sharing to be a successful alternative to the status quo, we need one important ingredient: people. Sharing requires a motivated, passionate community, whether physical or digital.
Photo by Scott Beale under a Creative Commons license from Flickr.com.
What would a zero waste world look like? One dimension is efficient recycling. But to truly get to zero waste, you'd need to go beyond recycling into reduce and reuse. In South Australia, they’re experimenting with how to take this one step further by adding “avoid” to the top of the waste management hierarchy.
WHAT STEPS CAN A CITY TAKE TO PROMOTE SHAREABLE HOUSING? Here are seven ideas to democratize housing in your city.
1. SUPPORT THE DEVELOPMENT OF COOPERATIVE HOUSING
Top image photo credit: Kalexanderson. Used under Creative Commons license.
As Creative Commons licenses become more of a rule than an exception, the nonprofit organization behind them continues to push sharing through free legal tools and community building. One such effort, Team Open, culls stories of creative commoners from around the globe who use Creative Commons licenses to create a better the world.
New way-finding signs are springing up in the public spaces of West Colfax (a neighborhood in Denver, Colorado). But these signs don’t just point you in the direction of actual places; they point you in the direction of your smartphone to find out more. With a simple tap of your mobile device to the sign (using NFC technology or QR codes), you will find yourself holding a dynamic guide to nearby destinations -- from historic spots to public art to local businesses -- in an instant.
We are comfortable thinking of the sharing revolution as a global trend spreading all over the planet and I can confirm this based on my recent personal experience in Chile, France and the Central and Eastern European (CEE) region. However, we should not forget to consider cultural and economic differences shaping diverse models of collaboration.
At the LeWeb conference today in Paris, Silicon Valley technology analyst Jeremiah Owyang unveiled his new venture, Crowd Companies, a "brand council" to help big corporations thrive in the collaborative economy. An increasing number of big brands want their share of the sharing, and Crowd Companies aims to help them do just that.
Every holiday season, the Center for a New American Dream encourages people to spend and consume less by thinking differently about gift giving.