The Internet and new technologies have boosted alternative consumption models in recent years. This has brought with it the integration of new business models that rethink not only the products or services offered but the systems behind them.

What is the collaborative economy?

One of the models that is gaining more followers day after day is the collaborative economy.

It is based on lending, renting, buying or selling products according to specific needs. Sometimes in this model, services are considered exchange goods.

It is a model centered on collaboration and mutual help.

Types of collaborative economy

  • Collaborative consumption: users can exchange goods or items almost for free through digital platforms such as Go trendier.
  • Open knowledge: IT platforms where knowledge is offered without legal or administrative barriers. Companies like Domestika are a clear example.
  • Collaborative production: Digital networks that promote the creation or dissemination of projects or services.
  • Collaborative finance: Microcredits, loans, savings, donations, and financing channels are included in this subgroup of the collaborative economy. Users contact each other to meet needs in any of these areas. The best example is crowdfunding, a financing model for those who wish to contribute capital to certain initiatives in a disinterested manner.


To distinguish the companies that work within the collaborative economy sector, we could define four distinctive features:

  • Use of information technology
  • Quality control through the integration of user-based recommendation and rating systems.
  • Home office and flexible schedules for workers who provide services through digital platforms or media.
  • To the extent that tools and assets are necessary to provide a service, digital correspondence companies rely on workers to use their own.

This new business model has broken many barriers being responsible for great successes such as Uber or Airbnb. In this model we find great benefits such as savings, promotion of sustainable development, resource management, the possibility of expanding the offer, among others.

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