Cybermarket Revolution: Exploring Digital Platforms and the Sharing Economy

The rise of “Gig economy” 

Paper explores where sharing economy is currently gaining traction while Al’s discussing the associated consequences with regard to increased abundance.

Example of sharing economy has been predominantly concerned with Uber and Airbnb.

Airbnb housing share service. Owners of properties will rent out their rooms and facilities as hotels for short term staying vacationers and tourists. These facilities are shared by whoever seeks to rent them. And prices of these renting services are much cheaper and provide more privacy than motels and hotels.

Using administrative data from Uber and a new representative survey of London drivers, this paper explore their backgrounds, earnings, and subjective well-being. This case study in the UK finds that the vast majority of Uber drivers are male immigrants, primarily drawn from the bottom half of the London income distribution. Most transitioned out of permanent part- or full-time jobs and about half of drivers’ report that their incomes increased after partnering with Uber. After covering vehicle operation costs and Uber’s service fee, we estimate that the median London driver earns about £11 per hour spent logged into the app. But while Uber drivers remain at the lower end of the London income distribution, they report higher levels of life satisfaction than other workers. Consistent with a trade-off between evaluative and emotional well-being observed among the self-employed, they also report higher anxiety levels. It is hypothesize that the higher life satisfaction among Uber drivers partly reflects their preferences for flexibility and the autonomy that the platform offers.

Highlight the importance of non-monetary factors in shaping the welfare of workers in the gig economy.