On Rapport Uncertainty in the Sharing Economy: Extending the Categories of Uncertainty

Alexander Frey, Manuel Trenz, Chee-Wee Tan, Daniel Veit

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Sharing Economy platforms enable a close physical interaction among strangers by mediating goods and services owned or provided by individuals. This close physical interaction is an inherent part of the service experience, is highly individual and thus can hardly be evaluated beforehand. This gives rise to a novel type of service uncertainty that we term as rapport uncertainty. Building on the hierarchical decomposition of service quality, we construct an uncertainty model that encompasses three uncertainty categories consumers face when sharing a resource: rapport, technical, and environment uncertainty. Our empirical study in a ride sharing context reveals that rapport uncertainty differs from other categories of uncertainty and significantly reduces the intention to transact with a service provider. Our findings illustrate how the concept of uncertainty must be extended to reflect the nature of shared service experiences. We suggest that owners of these platforms should actively manage this aspect through platform design.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 51st Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences 2018
Number of pages10
Place of PublicationHonolulu
PublisherHawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS)
Publication date2018
ISBN (Print)9780998133119
Publication statusPublished - 2018
EventThe 51st Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences. HICSS 2018 - Waikoloa Village, United States
Duration: 3 Jan 20186 Jan 2018
Conference number: 51


ConferenceThe 51st Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences. HICSS 2018
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityWaikoloa Village
Internet address
SeriesProceedings of the Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences


  • Rapport
  • Sharing economy
  • Uncertainty
  • User behavior

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