In a changing world, we want and seek to make the EU a smart, sustainable and inclusive economy. These three priorities are mutually reinforcing and should help the EU and Member States to achieve high levels of employment, productivity, and social cohesion. In particular, the European Union has set five ambitious targets for employment, innovation, education, social inclusion and climate/energy to be achieved by 2020.
In this context, the Sharing/Collaborative Economy is a new window of opportunity that may induce innovation processes, improve the efficiency and effectiveness of exchanges, enhance the use of available resources and contribute to the diffusion of values such as sustainability, respect for the environment, trust in the community or the recovery of more friendly forms of sociability and exchange.
These opportunities are particularly relevant for the Mediterranean regions of Europe, as they are most affected by the crisis, are specialised in sectors with a greater implementation of experiences associated with the sharing economy, such as agro-food, tourism or some services to people, and finally Mediterranean cultures have traditionally understood markets not only as spaces for the exchange of goods but also as spaces for socialising and exchanging experiences, emotions and sensations.
From this perspective, the OPENDOORS* project, part of the MED interregional cooperation programme, aims to deepen knowledge of the processes and mechanisms that facilitate the development of the Sharing/Collaborative Economy and to promote a solid network of stakeholders to boost the collaborative economy and enable its social control in order to try to maximize its positive effects in the economic, social and environmental sphere, limiting its negative externalities, especially related to labour precariousness or tax avoidance. With appropriate promotion and regulation mechanisms, the collaborative economy can be a factor of economic growth, territorial dynamism, and social integration.
Valencia in the centre of the sharing and collaborative economy in Europe
Promoted by the OPEN DOORS Project, organized by the partners and hosted by Econocult from the University of Valencia, the goals of the event are:
- Discuss opportunities for sharing and collaborative economy and present some of the results of the OPENDOORS project.
- Build a formal network of academic, institutional, economic and civil society actors to promote collaborative economy experiences.
- Listen to and exchange information about the various experiences and opinions on collaborative and sharing economy development and regulation.
With this in mind, a formal network of public and private agents will be set up in Valencia at the beginning of October, with a joint strategy and action plan that will explore the dissemination of successful experiences, propose appropriate regulatory environments, explore innovative new services to local creative communities, and ultimately allow them to “open the doors” to new forms of collaborative economy.
More than 60 stakeholderss from different European regions have been convoked in Valencia to join the Valencia declaration on Collaborative Economy and be part of the Mediterranean network on Sharing & Collaborative Economy.