Most of my students think that ownership of things is equal to happiness, though more and more people come to the conclusion, that you do not need to own a lot of things to have a good live.
Observing a relatively new trend, called minimalism, the opposite seems to be closer to the truth.
Lets take an example, most of my students want to own in a most sophisticated version: a car. Aside from some enthusiast: Owning a car does not make you happy. The possibility of getting a transport for your family and a couple of things, independent of weather and getting you across 100 kilometers within an hour makes you happy. But in between to uses of a car it is parked and instead of joy gives you worries like: “Where can I find a parking space?”
The idea to get the good without the bad is sharing. Before digitalization solved the organization of sharing a car or sharing a ride it was impossible to coordinate it. But as platforms like Uber or Car2Go are working hard to solve it, more and more people use it.
Similar to cars you can think of other things which are expensive and rarely used though frequently owned: A power drill, a lawn mower, a projector… So there are platforms like Leihdirwas (Germany) or Toolsity (Belgium). All that is relatively new and works only over small distances. There are different models, some cost money, some are free. At some platforms you can lend your stuff and make some money from it.
I have not tested it yet and I think it is a trend still waiting for its breakthrough, as minimalism is spreading and housing becomes increasingly expensive in the metropolitan areas. And as I want to prepare my students for the future and not for the past like some of my beloved colleagues 😉 , I think it is important to talk about the upcoming sharing-economy.
Please also take a look at my former post of the #itb8 series
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