On June 26, Dr. Yair Friedman and Dr. Zafrir Bloch-David from Tel Aviv presented their approach and work within WEconomize. platforms2share hosted and organized the June edition of Platform Coops Meet-Up Berlin in cooperation with SUPERMARKT.
In Israel, community building through sharing has a long tradition in the Kibbutz movement. Yair and Zafrir started their presentation with some examples of urban community-building activities in Israel. One of these examples is Muslala – a nonprofit organization established in 2009 by artists, residents and community activists of the Musrara neighborhood in Jerusalem. They argue that municipalities are necessary to build public infrastructure and they have the capacity to actively shape ecosystems in a way that community-building activities are supported. Municipalities are therefore seen as central stakeholders in the process of fostering Sharing Economy practices. They perceive the Sharing Economy as a strategic tool for municipalities to make use of underutilized assets within communities and hence, as a way to create value. The starting point of their work is to ask: “What are existing resources and what is the issue to be solved?” Besides mapping out the abilities, strengths and needs, they acknowledge that peers are the most important driver of creating value within a community.
The presentation was followed by a lively and partly controversial debate about social aspects and questions of sustainability within WEconomize’s work.