The rapid expansion of the collaborative economy is one of the most sigificant trends currently reshaping Scottish transport. Companies like Airbnb, TaskRabbit and Uber are offering new collaborative ways to manage services.
The growth plans of these businesses are disruptive, and as more providers enter the market and competition grows. There is a danger that many transport jobs could be downgraded with the so called ‘gig workers’ living a fragile existence unable to earn a living wage.
Collaboration has always been an inportant part of Scottish transport and volunteers in community transport have provided transport that would not otherwise been available. Properly managed the collaborative economy can help to deliver substantial benefits. However without new protections and controls the collaborative economy could start to struggle. The legislation to manage public and community transport services, backed up with public funding of services has continually been evolving to enable collaborative approaches to thrive, and this needs to continue.
In the STSG paper with recommendations for political manifestos we put such new legislation high on our list of priorities.We now need to work through in greater detail what policy changes are needed to help the collaborative economy thrive alongside existing transport provision. To discuss these issues we are meeting up at 12:30 in Rick’s Restaurant in Frederick Street Edinburgh on Tuesday 14th June. If you would like to attend please contact us