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Airbnb and social environment in big cities

Written by Yunquan Liu

Paper category

Bachelor Thesis


Business Administration>General




Bachelor Thesis: The impact of Airbnb on the social environment of big cities 1.1 Sharing economy 2.1.1 The concept of sharing economy The earliest form of sharing economy should be traced back to the cooperative consumption mentioned by economist Felson (1978). Botsman and Rogers (2010) define cooperative consumption as a network-based technology that facilitates space assets and skill assets that were previously difficult or impossible to obtain. “Sharing economy is a social economic system that coordinates activities based on peer-to-peer acquisition, granting or sharing of access rights to goods and services through'community-based online services'” (Hamari et al., 2015); Dan, Juan and Nicola​​). As an accommodation based on the sharing economy, Airbnb has developed rapidly due to high tourist demand (Guttentag, 2015; Heo, 2016; Karlsson and Dolnicar, 2016; Tussyadiah and Pesonen, 2015). Airbnb was founded in 2008; it has become the world's largest accommodation company and brand, with more than 1 million hotels in more than 34,000 cities and 192 countries (Austin, 2014; Spector, MacMillan and Rusli, 2014). Overall, it is clear that Airbnb provides an interesting and innovative alternative to traditional hotel accommodations (Varma, Jukic, Pestek, Shultz, and Nestorov, 2016). 2.1.2 Social network The term "social network" was first proposed by Barnes (1954). Social network comes from social network. The starting point of social networking is email. The sharing economy stage is a new P2P business model that builds trust based on social networks. The structure of Airbnb is a form of network economic organization based on the trust foundation of social networks. From the perspective of historical development, online social networks are not only a key force that promotes the unlimited connection between the Internet and the real world, but also a fashionable business model. Social networks cover various forms of network services based on human sociality. The Internet is an interactive platform for people to communicate with each other and participate in various activities. This information can be used to build trust between people and generate real-world transactions. Botsman and Rogers (2011) pointed out the importance of social networks in building trust in the sharing economy. The social network allows both parties to communicate directly through relevant information on the social network and determine the credit status of both parties. To some extent, social networks make it easier to build trust, saving transaction costs and facilitating transactions. Airbnb uses social networks to confirm the identity of housing providers and establish a rating system for housing providers and tenants. 2.1.3 Negative effects of the sharing economy Malhotra and Van Alstyne (2014) listed the negative effects of the sharing economy in large cities: First, short-term residents may have some negative effects due to conflicts in nature and life. Habits and homeowners. Secondly, short-term leasing income may affect the long-term leasing market supply. For some of them, low-income long-term rents are needed. The group has great influence; third, the unrecognized nature of online reviews is an important obstacle to online reputation evaluation. Just like the phenomenon of "single brush", "malicious sabotage by peers", and "online confrontation" on Taobao, the quality of products and services lacks a fundamental guarantee. This is the main reason why the current sharing economy model faces serious institutional obstacles. Fifth, the problem of insufficient future benefits for freelancers brought about by the sharing economy. Sixth, there are copyright disputes caused by excessive sharing. Seventh, when there is a serious conflict between the two parties in the transaction, what responsibilities should the platform bear? This series of adverse effects brought about by the sharing economy is an indispensable part of understanding the sharing economy. Does this also mean that the Airbnb produced is just wearing the beautiful cloak of the sharing economy, creating an illusion of beauty? The meaning behind this is that it deserves our careful consideration. 2.1.4 Discussion The question is not whether to bury or build shared prosperity, because it already exists (Malhotra & Van Alstyne, 2014). From the large amount of literature at this stage, we can glimpse the possible meaningful research directions of Airbnb's sharing economy model in the future. The first is that theoneSacks (2011) mentioned in his article on the sharing economy: the challenges that the sharing economy brings to the government and financial system. The main reason is that the sharing economy model makes it difficult to measure many economic activities, which makes some country-level data distorted and lacks reference. In addition, Edelman and Luca (2014) used Airbnb as an example to detect racial discrimination in the online short-term rental market. The test found that for the same room quality, non-black renters charge an average of about 12% higher than black renters. Therefore, in order to promote the healthy development of the sharing economy and maximize the benefits of the country and the whole society, the institutional challenges, negative effects and corresponding countermeasures that accompany the sharing economy will become the focus of future research. Read Less