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Local Barter Market

This idea is about a networking platform where people can get anything they need in exchange for something else from other person. We all have many things at home that we don´t use everyday. With the “Local Barter Market” we have the chance to lend products we rarely use in exchange for something else we need. This system allows not only exchanging physical products but also knowledge or any kind of help. Young people may often need physical products while senior people may need help with new technologies.

Photo of Jose Genoves
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How would you describe your idea in one sentence?

Lend products to your neighbours in exchange for help.
I imagine the system as an on-line platform where people can register and offer the products they could lend to other people, they also have to explain what they expect in exchange. Senior people usually have at home many products they don´t use anymore on a daily basis, at the same time young people are in need of things but they don´t have the money to buy them. The Local Barter Market allows you to find the product you need around your neighbourhood, get contact with the owner and make a deal for exchange.
In order to make it easier for the senior people I also can imagine a physical board somewhere in the neighbourhood where people can place notes about what they have to offer and what they need.

What early, lightweight experiment can you try out in your own community to test any assumptions you might have about your idea?

- Installing a physical board in the public library of my neighbourhood to check if people would be interested in exchanging stuff with other people.

What aspects of your idea could benefit from the input, skills or know-how of our OpenIDEO community?

- I would need help to prototype an online platform to check how people welcome the idea.


Join the conversation:

Photo of Liang Liangzz

Great Idea! This will bring the neighborhoods together! Might even fight crime! Who knows?

Photo of Leigh Cullen

Hi Jose, Awesome idea with great potential!

The young generation is digitally savvy, so your online product idea would appeal to them. Older adults aren't as attached to mobile/computer technology or digital social networks. You mentioned posting in libraries which I think is a super place to start. Thinking along similar lines, how would you roll this idea out in other non-digital formats/approaches so that adults can access your product/idea?

A library is a great place to meet others and share skills. Another type of social gathering space that attracts all age ranges is the local farmers market -- a place to exchange goods, ideas and potentially skills! What other events/locations are free/easy to attend, organic/informal, and enjoyed by both the younger gen & older adults? I'll brainstorm around this some more and will add ideas as they spring to mind.

Great job! Look forward to seeing where you take this.

Photo of Meena Kadri

Loving the farmers market build, Leigh! And we're digging your illustrations, Jose – they really help the goodness on your idea shine. I'm especially enjoying the notion that that this idea goes above resource matching – and mashes it up with time banking as well. As you develop this idea further and think about assumptions which could be tested in easy ways, you might want to check out our tips on prototyping: Could be really interesting to explore further how you might focus this idea on the interaction between younger people and older people given it could have wide appeal for everyone in between? Exciting opportunities...