Blurring Boundaries and the Erosion of Ownership

Publication: Chapter in book/Conference proceedingChapter in edited volume


Experiencing ownership is central to what it means to be human and it is central to the functioning of societies. One notion that is inherently tied to ownership is the notion of boundaries around the owned target and between owners and non-owners. These boundaries enable humans to claim, to exert control over and to take responsibility for that which is owned. All of which are necessary to motivate and enable sustainable behaviors.
In this contribution I highlight ways in which current societal and technological trends, in particular the fast paced movement towards encompassing digitalization of life, erode the boundaries necessary for the experience of ownership. I further discuss how this erosion may not only hamper feelings of ownership but even go so far as to shift the perception of humans from owners to those being owned; thus, undermining humans perceived capability as responsible agents. In response, I suggest a necessary transformation in terms of digital boundaries and empowerment, potentially taking the shape of digital blueprints and agents.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationChancen und Grenzen der Nachhaltigkeitstransformation
Editors Luks, F.
Place of PublicationWiesbaden
Pages109 - 130
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Austrian Classification of Fields of Science and Technology (ÖFOS)

  • 502019 Marketing
  • 502020 Market research
  • 501021 Social psychology
  • 501002 Applied psychology


  • #inspiration

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