The Development Trajectories of Platform Businesses - Trust as an Enabler of Sharing Based Exchange
Perustieteiden korkeakoulu | Master's thesis
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International Design Business Management
Master’s Degree Programme in International Design Business Management (IDBM)
AbstractSharing economy, an ecosystem where companies and individuals can extract value by redistributing, sharing or co-consuming existing assets, has become a significant business. Disruption has already occurred, and impacted consuming-based industries to the extent that some forecasts predict that sharing and collaborative consumption will result in fewer purchases and facilitate a shift from individual ownership to shared ownership or short-term rental. Trust is critical for sharing economy services enabled by Internet technologies, as in Internet customers cannot see the seller or service provider face-to-face, examine the merchandise physically or collect it upon payment. The objective of this research was to identify the most significant factors that contribute to trust building in order to enable sharing-based exchange. This research complements to the existing perspectives of trust building in online context and introduces trust-building strategies to the context of sharing. The research was conducted with multiple methods: The data were gathered through semi-structured thematic interviews with value-sharing platform experts and card-sorting approach with value-sharing platform users. Comparative analysis was performed in order to find possible misalignments and insights on trust factor from multiple viewpoints. The research reveals that consumer trust towards value-sharing platforms is built gradually. Initial trusting intentions include user’s motivation and interest towards the service in addition to positive prior web experiences. Further, trust is increased by quality factors of the service, such as, simple user interface, cultural awareness, service credibility, and third party assurance. Finally trust building leverages social capital, such as, reputation, and critical mass of users.
Thesis advisorTurunen, Taija
sharing economy, collaborative consumption, access-based consumption, resource intelligence, value-sharing platforms