Luca Nitschke

mobil.LAB Fellow

Funded by the Hans-Böckler Foundation

Phone: +

Email: luca.nitschke[at]


Research Focus:

  • Collaborative mobility concepts
  • Mobility justice
  • Critical mobilities research

PhD Project Description

Sharing mobilities beyond capitalism? – An exploration into non-commercial sharing practices in mobilities

My research looks at non-commercial forms of sharing mobilities, especially carsharing. My understanding of non-commercial sharing is the purchase and/or usage of an asset of mobility (e.g. car, bike, cargo-bikes, trucks) through an institutionalized process within a defined (local) group, e.g. a group of friends or neighbours, an association or a NGO. By institutionalized process I refer to any form of arrangement between the participants that results in a ‘regulatory’ frame leading to regularization and habitualization of their practice. The focus of my research are the motivations of and influences on people to participate in such a form of sharing. Further I investigate the influences this participation has on them. Through this I explore the possibilities of non-commercial mobilities sharing as an anchor for communal life and its contribution to a ‘transport transition’. While calling the participation in non-commercial sharing ‘resistance’ against privatized (commercial) mobilities exaggerates what is happening, these practices certainly are – consciously or unconsciously – not following a capitalist growth and valuation logic, providing a potential starting point for emancipatory change.

Theoretically I follow a critical tradition and describe “the means of transportation and communication”, understood as mobilities (Urry 2007), as part of the main forces and lubricants for the perpetual motion of the capitalist mode of production. From this viewpoint (uneven) mobility is an important factor in the (re)production of inequality in and between (groups of) individuals, countries, societies and cultures (Sheller 2015).

With my dissertation I want to draw attention on how the so-called second contradiction of capitalism (O’Connor 1988) can provide a theoretical lens for the analysis of contemporary mobilities and their development. As drastically visible in congested streets, the growth and development of mobility impairs its own production conditions and inherently creates its own limits. At the same time this contradiction creates a theoretical and practical need to rethink societies’ relationship with mobility outside of capitalism’s growth and concurrence logic (Schwedes 2017). With transport and economic growth being generally seen as conditioning each other, thinking about alternative, non-growth and non-market based, non-commercial and therefore non-capitalist forms of transport and mobility is a prerequisite and a step towards substantial emancipatory change in society.


Since 2016 PhD candidate in the mobil.LAB doctoral research group funded by the Hans-Böckler-Foundation
2016 Traineeship at Prognos AG in Berlin
2013-2015 Joint European Master in Environmental Studies – Cities and Sustainability (Jemes-CiSu) at Autonomous University of Barcelona, University of Aveiro and University of Aalborg
2012-2013 Scientific Assistant at the Wuppertal Institute
2009-2012 Bachelor of Environmental Sciences at University of Bielefeld

Memberships and Activities

Since 2017 Member of the trade union education and sciences (GEW) – Member of the Munich City Board
Since 2016 Member of the Micro-AG “Precarious Sciences”
Since 2016 Member of the guiding council of the PhD-students of the Hans-Böckler-Foundation
2016 Participation in the “Youth Forum Urban Mobilitry” in Berlin
2015 College for Collaborative Mobility in Bern
2013 Conference “Contemporary Carlowitz” in Berlin
2009-2012 Student council Biology