Buyers of ‘lemons’: How can a blockchain platform address buyers’ needs in the market for ‘lemons’?

Publication Type:

Journal Article


Electronic Markets, Volume 30, Number 2, p.227–239 (2020)


© 2019, Institute of Applied Informatics at University of Leipzig. The second-hand automotive market is one with the least trust from consumers. Customers on the second-hand car market suffer from such problems as the car being in worse condition than initially indicated, accident damage that is not disclosed, fraud, etc. Akerlof, described the market for used cars as an example of the problem of information asymmetries and resulting quality uncertainty. In order to cope with quality uncertainties, used car buyers actively engage themselves in information seeking. Blockchain technology promises to automatize the tracking of cars through their lifecycles and provide reliable information at any point in time it is needed. In our study, we investigate the problems car buyers face during information seeking and propose requirements for the design of a blockchain-based system to address these.