Cultural Exchange: Sharing Economy

One of the things I like best about my language exchange partnership is being exposed to ideas I would not have otherwise come across.


For example, we started with a discussion about “Jipbap” (Home meal) a website that helps people get together to share meals so they won’t have to eat alone.  Reminds me of  “Let’s Eat” drama.


Jipbap (Zipbob) - Eat meals together

Jipbap (Zipbob) – Eat meals together


That led to a Forbes magazine article How Seoul Became One of the World’s Sharing Capitals.  From there I read about the Sharing Seoul project.  Seoul government is trying to combat the stress on resources in such a population dense area by supporting start ups that help “collaborative consumption”.

“From sharing unused parking lots, to leasing empty rooms, from exchanging kid’s clothes and even meals, to sharing bookshelves and letting citizens use idle spaces in public or government-owned facilities, a different culture is emerging”

A Sharing Economy.  The concept of bring economic benefit and improved city life by sharing makes me smile.  It is very “green”.  Sharing is a concept we’ve seen in things like co-operative farms, neighborhood tool shares, Good Will, Freecycle, and “Little Free Libraries”. However, Sharing Seoul has  economic as well as social and environmental benefits.

The Sharing City promoted by the government has these benefits:

  • lower government costs
  • generating income for residents
  • enhanced sense of community
  • reducing environmental impact

You can read more in an interview with the mayor Social equity through sharing.  Visit peers website for information about the sharing economy.


Here is an article “Sharing City Seoul: a Model for the World” in Korean.

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