Introduction: Connecting Sharing and Design

  • Jeffrey Kok Hui ChanEmail author
  • Ye Zhang
Part of the SpringerBriefs in Applied Sciences and Technology book series (BRIEFSAPPLSCIENCES)


Sharing and design have yet to be systematically connected even when more effective or efficient configurations of sharing require design knowledge and action. In this chapter, the idea of sharing by design is introduced. The primary question is: How is the sharing system designed? To address this question, this chapter begins by examining the definitions of design, and also sharing. Subsequently, three justifications for the need of sharing by design are offered. The chapter concludes with a brief overview of the book.


Sharing Sharing economy Sharing cities Design Reciprocity 


  1. A. Balsamo, Designing Culture: the Technological Imagination at Work (Duke University Press, Durham, NC, 2011)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. C. Barnett, Foreword, in Sharing Economies in Times of Crisis: practices, Politics and Possibilities, ed. by A. Ince, S.M. Hall (Routledge, New York, NY, 2018), pp. x–xivGoogle Scholar
  3. G. Bateson, Steps to an Ecology of Mind (University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 2000)Google Scholar
  4. R. Belk, Why not share rather than own? Annal. Am. Acad. Polit. Soc. Sci. 611(1), 126–140 (2007). Scholar
  5. R. Belk, Sharing. J. Consum. Res. 36(5), 715–734 (2010). Scholar
  6. L. Benedictus, The library of things: could borrowing everything from drills to disco balls cut waste and save money? The Guardian (2019),
  7. N. Bhatia, A. Steinmuller, Spatial models for the domestic commons: communes, co-living and cooperatives. Archit. Des. Spec. Issue: Hous. Interv.: Archit. Towards Soc. Equity 88(4), 120–127 (2018)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. R. Botsman, R. Rogers, What’s Mine is Yours: the Rise of Collaborative Consumption (HarperBusiness, New York, NY, 2011)Google Scholar
  9. J.K.H. Chan, Y. Zhang, Sharing space: urban sharing, sharing a living space, and shared social spaces. Space Cult. (2018). Scholar
  10. S.R. Davies, Hackerspaces: making the Maker Movement (Polity, Malden, MA 2017)Google Scholar
  11. A. Davies, D. Evans, Urban food sharing: emerging geographies of production, consumption and exchange. Geoforum (2018). Scholar
  12. A.R. Davies, Urban Food Sharing: rules, Tools and Networks (Policy Press, Bristol, UK, 2019)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. A. Escobar, Designs for the Pluriverse: radical Interdependence, Autonomy, and the Makings of Worlds (Duke University Press, Durham, NC, 2017)Google Scholar
  14. K. Frenken, J. Schor, Putting the sharing economy into perspective. Environ. Innov. Soc. Trans. 23, 3–10 (2017)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. B.M. Frischmann, Infrastructure: the Social Value of Shared Resources (Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK, 2012)Google Scholar
  16. E. Goffman, Interaction Ritual: essays in Face-to-Face Behavior (Transaction Publishers, New Brunswick, NJ, 2005)Google Scholar
  17. S.M. Hall, A. Ince, Introduction: sharing economies in times of crisis, in Sharing Economies in Times of Crisis: practices, Politics and Possibilities, ed. by A. Ince, S.M. Hall (Routledge, New York, NY, 2018), pp. 1–15Google Scholar
  18. A. Hult, K. Bradley, Planning for sharing—Providing infrastructure for citizens to be makers and sharers. Plan. Theory Pract. 18(4), 597–615 (2017)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. A. Huron, Working with strangers in saturated space: reclaiming and maintaining the urban commons. Antipode 47(4), 963–979 (2015)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. H. Jarvis, Sharing, togetherness and intentional degrowth. Prog. Hum. Geogr. 43(2), 256–275 (2019), Scholar
  21. N.A. John, The Age of Sharing (Polity, Malden, MA, 2017)Google Scholar
  22. E. Katrini, Sharing culture: on definitions, values, and emergence. Sociol. Rev. Monogr. 66(2), 425–446 (2018)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. E. Katrini, Creating the Everyday Commons: spatial Patterns of Sharing Culture. Unpublished Doctoral Dissertation (Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA, USA, 2019)Google Scholar
  24. K. Krippendorf, The Semantic Turn: a New Foundation for Design (CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL, 2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. I. Mariotti, C. Pacchi, S. Di Vita, Co-working spaces in Milan: location patterns and urban effects. J. Urban Technol. 24(3), 47–66 (2017)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. D. McLaren, J. Agyeman, Sharing Cities: a Case for Truly Smart and Sustainable Cities (MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, 2015)Google Scholar
  27. J. Merkel, Coworking and innovation, in The Elgar Companion to Innovation and Knowledge Creation, ed. by H. Bathelt, P. Cohendet, S. Henn, L. Simon (Edward Elgar, Cheltenham, UK, 2017), pp. 570–586CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. K.M. Murphy, Design and anthropology. Annu. Rev. Anthropol. 45, 433–449 (2016)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. E. Ostrom, Governing the Commons: the Evolution of Institutions for Collective Action (Cambridge University Press, New York, NY, 2006)Google Scholar
  30. D. Petrescu, C. Petcou, C. Baibarac, Co-producing commons-based resilience: lessons from R-urban. Build. Res. Inf. 44(7), 717–736 (2016)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. J.A. Price, Sharing: the integration of intimate economies. Anthropologica 17(1), 3–27 (1975)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. J.P. Protzen, D.J. Harris, The Universe of Design: Horst Rittel’s Theories of Design and Planning (Routledge, New York, NY, 2010)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. C.M. Rose, The comedy of the commons: commerce, custom, and inherently public property. Univ. Chic. Law Rev. 53(3), 711–781 (1986)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. L. Sargisson, Swimming against the tide: collaborative housing and practices of sharing, in Sharing Economies in Times of Crisis: practices, Politics and Possibilities, ed. by A. Ince, S.M. Hall (Routledge, London, UK, 2018), pp. 145–149Google Scholar
  35. D.A. Schön, The design process, in Varieties of Thinking, ed. by V.A. Howard (Routledge, New York, NY, 1990), pp. 110–141Google Scholar
  36. J.B. Schor, W. Attwood-Charles, The “sharing” economy: Labor, inequality, and social connection on for-profit platforms. Sociol. Compass (2017), Scholar
  37. J.B. Schor, Debating the Sharing Economy (2014),
  38. J.B. Schor, Does the sharing economy increase inequality within the eighty percent?: findings from a qualitative study of platform providers. Camb. J. Reg. Econ. Soc. 10, 263–279 (2017)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. H.A. Simon, The Sciences of the Artificial, 3rd edn. (MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, 1996)Google Scholar
  40. A. Smith, The Theory of Moral Sentiments (Penguin Books, New York, NY, 1974)Google Scholar
  41. M. Tomasello, A natural History of Human Thinking (Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA, 2014)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. W. Ulrich, Can we secure future-responsive management through systems thinking and design? Interfaces 24(4), 26–27 (1994)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. T. Widlok, Sharing by default? outline of an anthropology of virtue. Anthropol. Theory 4(1), 53–70 (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. T. Widlok, Anthropology and the Economy of Sharing (Routledge, New York, NY, 2017)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Humanities, Arts and Social SciencesSingapore University of Technology and DesignSingaporeSingapore
  2. 2.Department of ArchitectureNational University of SingaporeSingaporeSingapore

Personalised recommendations