How German cities cope with the rise of Airbnb (Feb 2020)

  • Urban challenges and the gig economy: how German cities cope with the rise of Airbnb

  • By Mark K. Cassell and Anni Michelle Deutsch. Published online by the journal German Politics on 3 February 2020

  • Abstract:

    • Airbnb, the short-term rental (STR) company that operates in 65,000 cities and 191 countries is the most disruptive and transformative force in urban housing and planning in recent memory.

    • On any given day, in Germany the company lists approximately 100,000 accommodations primarily in the larger cities.

    • In Berlin the company lists nearly 38,500 beds in 20,000 accommodations or 27 per cent of the city’s entire hospitality market.

    • Airbnb is a major player in other German cities as well including Munich, Cologne, and Hamburg where the online company holds 20 per cent, 16 per cent, and 15 per cent shares in the hospitality market, respectively.

    • Drawing on the experiences of Germany’s ten largest cities, the article examines three questions.

      • How do German city leaders understand the public problem posed by STRs?

      • What are the economic, political, and administrative challenges to regulating STRs?

      • And finally, how are Germany cities regulating STRs and what explains the variation across cities?

  • Keywords: Berlin, Munich, Cologne, Hamburg, Germany, Airbnb, local regulation

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