The Sharing Economy

According to a new study by Havas Worldwide titled “The New Consumer and the Sharing Economy,” about 80% of people polled globally agree that progress is not about consuming more but consuming better and more than half say they could live happily without the majority of the things they own.

The report calls “collaborative consumption” the next wave of consumerism and states, “a new economic model is emerging—one that focuses less on ownership and accumulation and more on community and collaboration.” Two-thirds of the total sample believe society would be better off if people shared more and owned less.

The bottom line is that many people are gradually realizing it is becoming more about access than accumulation, especially for big-ticket items like houses and vehicles. As a case in point, my wife and I lease both our home and automobile, freeing us from the weekend routine of lawn mowing and car washing, since both are included.

And without kids or pets tying us to a particular place we are in a position to explore a location-independent lifestyle. Americans claim to dream of a home to call their own and my wife and I lived that dream, but since counting the overall cost and selling our extra stuff to become more mobile we are realizing how fun an untethered life can be.