Initiative on the Sharing Economy


University of Minnesota awarded federal grant to research autonomous vehicles

The University of Minnesota received a $1.75 million grant over three years from the National Science Foundation (NSF) as part of the NSF's Smart & Connected Communities grant program. The U of M project, which runs through 2021, is one of only 13 projects chosen by NSF nationwide. The Leveraging Autonomous Shared Vehicles for Greater Community Health, Equity, Livability, and Prosperity (HELP) grant supports fundamental research on a critical challenge facing many cities and communities. Researchers include Initiative on the Sharing Economy director Saif Benjaafar and participating faculty member Tom Fisher. More about federal grant to research autonomous vehicles.

U of M student competition focuses on the sharing economy

Initiative on the Sharing Economy is hosting a U of M student competition in spring 2019 to continue to advance research and innovation on sharing economy topics. Three student teams submitted projects in February and will present their results in May at the CTS Planning and the Economy Research Council meeting. More details to come. Contact Chelsea Arbury (, 612-626-2862) with questions, or to sponsor a project in next year's student competition.

ACM call for papers on urban computing and smart cities, due June 15

In recent years, the urban networks infrastructure has undergone a rapid expansion that increasingly generates a large amount of data. Though big urban data can help tackle big urban challenges, it is challenging to manage, analyze, and make sense of this information. The Association for Computing Machinery Transactions on Data Science is planning a special issue on Urban Computing and Smart Cities aims to publish work on multidisciplinary research a related to data science solutions and data-driven applications to address real world challenges for enabling smart cities. Paper submission is due June 15, 2019. More about submissions (PDF).

Previous Events

Research Workshop on the Sharing Economy

November 3, 2017

Industrial Mathematics Clinic

July 24–26, 2017

Symposium on the Sharing Economy

May 16–17, 2016

Industry News

More sharing economy in the news

About the Initiative

The Initiative on the Sharing Economy sheds light on the growing trend away from the exclusive ownership and consumption of resources to one of shared use and consumption. Peer-to-peer shared mobility is a particular focus.

The Initiative on the Sharing Economy was established by the Center for Transportation Studies in partnership with Saif Benjaafar, Distinguished McKnight University Professor in the Department of Industrial & Systems Engineering, and other faculty members across the University of Minnesota and is administered by CTS.


To learn more about how you might participate in the Initiative on the Sharing Economy, please contact Saif Benjaafar, or Michael McCarthy of the Center for Transportation Studies,


Subscribe to periodic updates on the Initiative's activities.

Subscribe to periodic updates on the Initiative's activities.