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Country Report on the Collaborative Economy in Austria

Höfner, Malte and Rosegger, Rainer (2021): Country Report on the Collaborative Economy in Austria. Published in:

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Abstract

Collaborative economies (hereinafter named CE) are business models whose activities have their origins in the use of digital platforms. There, shared consumption is practised in various forms of peers with either profit or non-for-profit outcomes. By means of several EU-wide studies, this report takes a closer look at the CE in Austria. Apart from the accommodation sector (national economic importance of tourism), Austria presents an EU-below average use of services offered on sharing platforms. Examples portray a field of tension from activities of low-threshold initiatives at the local level to capital-oriented actors. Such global players (Airbnb) have established themselves (in) the sharing economy and now represent a lot of challenges impacting the state regulatory systems and domestic market participants nationally. Thus, Austria is currently dealing with questions of regulation and tax legislation of CE. Looking at national CE initiatives, the capital region of Vienna is at the forefront of consolidation while omitting the majority of Austrians living in rural regions. Further research is needed to raise questions about law challenges, to address the strong tendencies of precarisation of service work, evoked by sharing platforms, to face the current constraints in managing this vigorous dynamic of economic transformation processes.

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