Do Sharing Economy Platforms Foster Trust in Others? Evidence from a Survey Experiment
29 Pages Posted: 4 Jan 2019
Date Written: December 20, 2018
The rise of digital platforms in which peers can share goods or services has drawn attention to the ability of these platforms to foster trust amongst their members. Combining experimental methods with an online survey of 2,000 representative Internet users in France, we investigate whether users of sharing economy platforms are more likely to cooperate in the context of a trust game. We focus our attention on the carsharing platform, Blablacar. Our main findings show that neither trust nor trustworthiness increase with the use of BlaBlaCar or other similar sharing platforms. Moreover, cooperation is not fostered if the trust game is played by two members of BlaBlaCar, suggesting that digital platforms do not create interpersonal trust that is transferable outside of these platforms.
Keywords: Trust, Sharing Economy, Platforms
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