Decentralized, Disruptive, and On Demand: Opportunities for Local Government in the Sharing Economy

11 Pages Posted: 11 Feb 2016 Last revised: 24 Mar 2016

See all articles by Stephen R. Miller

Stephen R. Miller

University of Idaho College of Law - Boise

Date Written: February 9, 2016


This essay is a response to Daniel E. Rauch and David Schleicher’s Like Uber, but for Local Government Policy: The Future of Local Regulation of the Sharing Economy. The essay examines policy propositions raised by Rauch and Schleicher, and also affirmatively posits three ways in which local government can use the sharing economy to achieve long-standing policy goals. First, the sharing economy can be used by local governments to decentralize economic development activity throughout the city. Second, when local governments are using regulatory powers to assist redistribution efforts, such as inclusionary zoning, they can consider how sharing firms, such as car-sharing, can be implemented into those existing redistributive requirements. By doing so, local governments can create disruptive markets that assist with the developing competitiveness of the sharing economy. Third, local governments can use sharing economy services for their own proprietary functions. Taken to its logical end, such sharing of government property could go a long way towards eliminating Tieboutian sorting and address regional inequities. In addition, the essay urges local governments to consider long-term implications of the sharing economy, such as how sharing firms may control access to future technologies like autonomous cars, and begin preparing for such futures now when making long-term infrastructure investments.

Keywords: sharing economy, redistribution, Airbnb, Uber, short term rentals, transportation network companies, local government

Suggested Citation

Miller, Stephen R., Decentralized, Disruptive, and On Demand: Opportunities for Local Government in the Sharing Economy (February 9, 2016). 77 Ohio State Law Journal Furthermore 47 (2016), Available at SSRN:

Stephen R. Miller (Contact Author)

University of Idaho College of Law - Boise ( email )

514 W. Jefferson St
Boise, ID 83702
United States
208-364-4559 (Phone)
208-344-2176 (Fax)

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