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Four Models of Sharing Economy Platforms

Ioanna Constantiou, Attila Marton, Virpi Kristiina Tuunainen


Sharing economy platforms combine organizational and market mechanisms in innovative ways to gain competitive advantages over incumbents. These mechanisms are combined on two key dimensions: tight or loose control over participants, and high or low rivalry between participants. We call the resulting four sharing economy models “Franchiser,” “Principal,” “Chaperone” and “Gardener.” Each model focuses on a different value proposition and strategic intent, but they all exploit the growing fluidity of organizational boundaries. Understanding the sharing economy in these terms enables businesses to identify, and respond to, the threats and opportunities provided by sharing economy platforms. The lessons learned from our research will help businesses to engage with the sharing economy.

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ISSN 1540-1960