Masters in Business

Arun Sundararajan on the Sharing Economy

"Digitized trust" laid the groundwork for the sharing economy.

This week on Masters in Business we speak with Arun Sundararajan, professor at New York University’s Stern School of Business and author of “The Sharing Economy: The End of Employment and the Rise of Crowd-Based Capitalism.”

We discuss how companies such as eBay, Craigslist and Amazon have “digitized trust,” and served as the predecessors to modern sharing platforms such as Airbnb. Much of the sharing economy, he said, is based on the existence of underutilized capacity: There are 80 million power drills in the U.S. and each is used on average just 13 minutes over its lifetime; there are 250 million cars in the country and most do nothing more than take up parking spaces; millions of dwellings have spare rooms that sit empty; unworn clothing fills closets.

You can hear the full interview, including our podcast extras, at iTunesSoundCloud + Bloomberg. All of our earlier podcasts can be found at iTunesSoundCloud and Bloomberg.

This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.

    To contact the author of this story:
    Barry Ritholtz at britholtz3@bloomberg.net

    To contact the editor responsible for this story:
    James Greiff at jgreiff@bloomberg.net

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