The Access Economy

A Slightly More Accurate Term for the "Sharing Economy"

The “access economy” describes a type of business built on the sharing of resources, like AirBnb or ZipCar. As of 2012, the concept of sharing has moved from a community practice into a legitimate business opportunity. More popularly known as the sharing economy, the access economy suggests that “access” to goods and services may be more desirable than “ownership” of them.

The result, in theory, is a lower environmental and cultural burden through mass consumption.

Although “sharing” is not quite the same thing, “The Sharing Economy” remains the more popular term to describe access. You can read more on our sharing economy page here.


Interview: CEO of on Partnership with Daimler

Last week Daimler made another step to deepen its involvement in the access economy by partnering and investing an undisclosed sum in the…
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Why Do Zipcar Users Abuse the Cars? 4 Lessons For the Access Economy

Two researchers try to figure out why consumers don’t take good care of their Zipcars and what we can learn from it on…

Airbnb Builds Community, Not a Brand

When Airbnb's founders came up with the money-making idea of sharing space in August 2008, they didn't realize that they would be building…
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Q&A: Van Jones on Politics, Student Loans, and the Access Economy

Says Jones "There’s no reason that someone like Romney, who, on his best day comes across like Thurston Howell III, should wind up…

Radical Sharing for the New Industrial Revolution

The access economy, also known as collaborative consumption, is characterized by the sharing of goods, space, services and expertise, in innovative ways; typically…
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The Access Economy Comes to Your Washing Machine

In many urban environments and college towns, people don't own laundry machines. La Machine du Voison ("The Neighbor's Machine") aims to connect those…

Swap, Don’t Shop: 4 Entrepreneurs Share Lessons From the Access Economy

The access economy has been growing tremendously in the last couple of years, becoming maybe the only good thing that came out of…

CitiBank Shells Out $41M to Sponsor NYC’s Bike Share Program

This week New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced that CitiBank would sponsor the city's new bike share program, Citi Bike, slated to…

RelayRides Accident Raises Concerns about Liabilities of Access Economy

A recent RelayRides car accident is bringing attention to some of the liability issues associated with sharing economy borrowing arrangements.

The Next Web Gold Rush: US Crowdfunding Sites?

With the recent passing of the JOBS Act into law, crowdfunding that allows people to be actual investors in and gain financial rewards…

Interview: Jeff Miller, Founder & CEO, Wheelz

At this week’s Fortune Brainstorm Green conference, I had a chance to talk briefly with Jeff Miller, Founder & CEO of –…

Is San Francisco Trying to Kill AirBnb With a 15% Tax?

A proposed 15% tax on "transient occupancy" is being considered at San Francisco city hall. The rule would force Airbnb to collect an…

4 Reasons GM is Investing in Car-Sharing

It looks like GM is playing an important role in the growth of RelayRides, which announced earlier this month that it is expanding…

With Senate Bill Passage Crowdfunding Legalization On the Horizon

On Thursday, the U.S. Senate approved legislation that will legalize crowdfunding and allow the general public to make equity investments in start-up companies…

Access Economy Startup Allows People to Rent Each Others Stuff, a new “access economy” startup, allows you to rent your things to others and make money. According to the site, it’s a…