Excited to announce the publication of a new article in open access journal Oikonomics. The article is part of a Special Issue on “New strategies and alternative aspects of the platform economy”, coordinated by Lluís Alfons Garay Tamajón of the Open University of Catalonia. In this article, which I co-authored with Claudio Minca, we examine some key changes to Airbnb’s travel philosophy, protocols and standards since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. It reflects on how the climate of uncertainty imposed by the global health crisis has induced Airbnb to promote among its users a new ethos of flexibility, adaptability, liability and long-term commitment. In particular, we discuss how new protocols and regulatory measures have engendered a culture of uniformity and transparency regarding issues of health and safety, but also social interactions, personal communication, and the conduct of everyday life of Airbnb’s hosts and guests. The article also highlights that the changes implemented by the platform have not gone unchallenged and how some of the protests against the new measures and protocols were manifested via the Airbnb Community Center. We conclude with a few considerations about possible future directions of the Airbnb hospitality machinery and their potential consequences on the post-pandemic landscapes of travel and tourism.
The English version of the article can be downloaded here: https://oikonomics.uoc.edu/divulgacio/oikonomics/_recursos/documents/15/roelofsen-Minca_Oikonomics15_eng.pdf
The Spanish version of the article can be downloaded here: https://oikonomics.uoc.edu/divulgacio/oikonomics/_recursos/documents/15/roelofsen-Minca_Oikonomics15_esp.pdf