I gave this article that title on submitting it, on May 5, 2020 – 20 days before the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis, and the subsequent steps to both revolution and violent crackdown. I can no longer say something that light, but I can say that current circumstances make it all the more painfully obvious that the end of this globalized racial capitalist world is long past due. And that deserves its own treatise, which will not be found here today.

I first left this article needing one big last rework when the COVID pandemic became visible in my part of the world [USA]. Feeling it had been made obsolete along with the rest of the old world, I moved on and into using what I’ve learned, and more importantly connecting with who I’ve met, in the world of cooperative economics, in order to take this moment to transform the world into what we’ve been dreaming all along.

In my article I wrote about the many people, including lots I failed to name — especially women, and indigenous people, and immigrant communities, and “poor” families, and squats, and tent communities, and black communities, and indigenous land rights organizers, and on and on — who have been enacting the “new” economy all along, at their peril, invisiblized and subjugated by the form of patriarchal extractive exploitative capitalism most of us mistakenly refer to as “the economy.”

I refer to many “failed” experiments in complementary currencies, and many efforts that continue to ebb and flow, like our own timebank here in Madison Wisconsin, and ones that turn into plain old relationships where people help each other out, and ones that get eaten by the non-profit industrial complex. I finally came to the conclusion that the efforts that embrace what’s known as “emergent strategy” – working with their communities, expressly building relationships and tapping into group process and collective intelligence, honoring the wisdom of each participant, aiming for diversity of perspectives, adopting clearly communicated values systems, explicitly aiming to redress wrongs and create solutions that work for everyone – are the ones that continue to live and thrive.

And now, these are some of the ones springing into action to support people in time of COVID-19. Some are providing infrastructure and guidance for new mutual aid networks, some are able to tap into membership where ready networks of people already know how to help each other out in an organized way. All the nutrients of all the various projects in different stages of birth, life, death, decomposition, are beginning to come together now to create systems that can relieve some of the suffering from the crisis, then help mitigate the damage, carry out transformative work, and usher in a lasting economic transformation.

And then, before the final edits were made, the world completely changed again with the 5/25 police killing of George Floyd. All showing even more starkly the dynamics covered here, and opening of new possibilities — beautiful as well as horrific— that were  virtually unfathomable before.

Like the solutionary work I refer to below, it is all emergent, and you’re invited to participate.

But first, here is what I wrote back in February 2020…

Sometime in 1995 my spouse and I, then two 20-something spanking new owners of a little neighborhood coffeehouse, stumbled on a tiny magazine piece on the Ithaca HOURs currency. We were floored by this great idea that you could create your own local money. Amazing, and so clearly needed! We joined up with a local group to make and launch our own local currency, Madison HOURs, to a lot of excitement and fanfare.

Then we spent 20 years dragging the thing behind us like a dead elephant — finally, joyfully laying it to rest with much relief in 2012.

That was my introduction to the world of complementary currency, a world in which I’ve continued to operate precisely because I don’t want people to make the same mistake we did.

That mistake was in starting with an answer to a question nobody was asking.

With all its tremendous flaws, the dominant capitalist economy IS built for business, even when it’s disadvantaging locals through its economies of scale. The market economy has not been crying out for an additional way to accept payment, especially not one that requires an extra drawer in your till, extra training for your staff, and fewer ways to spend it.

What our world IS crying out for is ways to encourage, value, and reward care. For ways to make sure our vulnerable and sick neighbors get what they need, ways to facilitate equitable distribution of resources among people especially including those who have been shut out of today’s dominant economy (black, brown, old, young, immigrant, differently abled, neuro-atypical, ‘unattractive’, lots of women, lots of men, lots of LGBTQ folks, the list goes on…). Our world is crying out for an economy that doesn’t create a fake battle of ‘jobs v. environment’ battle, an economy not built on slavery, stolen land, and a prison industrial complex. We need an economy that doesn’t steal people’s time and life energy in exchange for very basic access to very basic needs (still hard to obtain for many in the US even at full- or more than full-time employment). Our world is crying out for an economy that’s not built on eating and excreting said world.

A local currency provides a friendlier way to do business and is an excellent learning opportunity – but it does not provide the regenerative economy the world needs. However, principles of it can be a key player in the ecosystem that DOES provide that economy.

That’s the understanding that underlies my current work with Mutual Aid Networks, and the global cooperative network we’ve formed, HUMANs (Humans United in Mutual Aid Networks).

My work in mutual aid began in earnest about 10 years into the Madison HOURs experiment, when I read Bernard Lietaer’s “The Future of Money”. I was completely convinced by his description of a robust currency ecosystem, where different forms of currency are used to facilitate different types of exchange.

The perspective I gained from that book drove me to start the Dane County TimeBank, a mutual credit exchange where members exchange time instead of money, where everyone’s time is valued equally and no monetary value is attached to time. This showed me how elegant, powerful, and transformational – both on an individual and a community level – this form of equal exchange and mutuality could be.

I also saw that, like nearly every other community effort, in order to do timebanking we had to begin to play the non-profit game: applying for and reporting on funding from foundations and government sources, being dependent on their requirements, largesse, and shifts in direction. Plus, while timebanking is excellent for rewarding those infinitely abundant things like care, creativity, civic engagement, and community building, it is NOT built for business and shouldn’t mingle too much in that domain.

That’s why we started looking at how other solidarity economy tools fit into the picture, and developed our vision of the different ways of exchanging that fit together like a food chain in natural ecosystems. We realized that with a comprehensive approach to sharing, exchange, and ownership, we could much more meaningfully and systemically change how we approach work and compensation, and could more effectively change the economy by changing our own work lives and the work lives of people in our networks. We realized that, in combination, the various means of sharing and exchange already available to us could meet our needs pretty well.

To explore these ideas and also to build solidarity, the Mutual Aid Networks team (a rotating cast of collaborators since 2009) have been traveling around the US, parts of Canada, Europe and New Zealand, meeting people in person and learning about projects.

Especially in the US, but everywhere, we’ve found timebanks, local currencies, transition towns, and eco-villages that are struggling with scarcity and competition, working hard to facilitate sometimes vanishingly small amounts of participation, and burning out.

We know it’s time to put Mutual Aid tools to work for us, all who are struggling to show the world that they work, laboring away in our ‘free time’ while we work day jobs in the exploitation economy. Or working for free while the exploitation economy eats our future security (like savings or equity or familial goodwill).

In fact, a major theme throughout my solidarity economy work has been the sheer number of strong leaders and project stewards – by far a majority women – who are leading their respective projects without monetary compensation, or with sporadic and insufficient monetary compensation, or with giant strings attached to their funding.

At the same time there is the dawning of our collective consciousness that we already have what we need, have always had it, and it’s the invisibilization of that awareness that is the crux of the problem. And that we’re at the heart of the problem by defining our success and ourselves in the old capitalist paradigm, by capitalist measures. We complementary currency activists say we know these models can provide a solution, yet most of us use them marginally at best. We say we have what we need yet we don’t employ these tools to support our own efforts. Instead, you’ll find many complementary currency activists mired in endless funding pitches, competing with one another to be turned down for yet another big grant.

The complementary currencies in the US and elsewhere, almost to a one, are moribund to varying degrees – higher profile systems like Bay Bucks CA and Hudson Valley Current in NY make lovely public cases for local economies, while vanishingly small numbers engage in their exchange. From my vantage point, this is a reflection of my previous case that business already has plenty of exchange mechanisms at its disposal and the convenience costs don’t outweigh the benefits of another currency in their tills. Timebanks are faring somewhat better but tend to have very few exchanges recorded. This is also true for my own “very functional” timebank which has almost 3000 members signed up, of whom just about 100 record exchanges in any given year.

However, there is a magic in the timebank, and Madison HOURs before it, and every other limping or defunct cooperative economy experiment: it’s the dawning awareness that the economy is US, what we offer, what we share, what we receive, and that we’re free to enact it however we want. And once we have relationships with one another, and knowledge of each other’s gifts, we tend to choose to share and exchange with minimal paperwork and maximal joy.

We’re right that money is the problem. But at its heart, the problem is the central role that money has taken in human society, sucking in the rest of life like a black hole. So the solution must rest in removing it from that central space, and filling in the social vacuum around it.

When we start from that place, we make smarter choices about what economic tools to use and when. For example, we start using the formal timebank just to invite new community members and to find and build new services, but not to log transactions among people we’ve come to know. Many timebanks have begun to offer shared savings (of regular old bank money) once the need becomes apparent (LA’s Arroyo Seco Timebank is a great example), and those start with a community who already know one another and how to cooperate. And many timebanks morph into cooperative enterprise-generating organizations (e.g. in Lake County CA, or the Nuria Social in Catalonia) when the need becomes apparent and the community has built their organizing skills.

The local business-oriented complementary currency project “rCredits” morphed into a much simpler yet more powerful model, Common Good, that skips over the creation of a new currency, and combines cooperative saving-giving-lending, and a debit card. The complementary currency just wasn’t needed.

The common thread I’m witnessing is that people and projects who embrace (or at least roll with) change, unpredictability, fallow times, and emergent strategies are the ones who are flourishing.

When we recognize that defunct or barely-there currency and community projects aren’t “failures” after all, but nutrients for a more verdant garden, the picture shifts. Besides the examples in the previous paragraphs, we can point to many of our own partners who have recently obtained their own public spaces where ongoing in-person organizing, building, and emergent strategies can flourish – including our Mutual Aid pilot in Hull UK, our partners in BC-area Working Group on Indigenous Food Sovereignty, friends at STIR Magazine UK, and my own local Madison Mutual Aid Network and Dane County TimeBank. In addition, peer-to-peer support and learning opportunities are abounding:- Commons Transition, Shareable, People’s Hub, our own HUMANs network — and actively connecting formerly disconnected approaches and communities. We’re about to witness a whole new level of effectiveness, complexity, and, even more importantly, social justice and equity in our cooperative economic ecosystem.

At Mutual Aid Networks we’ve always had the ‘pave the cowpath’ philosophy – in other words, invite people to experiment freely, then document the commonly successful modalities and make them more replicable. You are invited.

Now that COVID has so clearly shown the world that the highways and byways of globalized capitalism lead us off the edge of a cliff, we can go fast in the other direction – toward creating enjoyable new livelihoods that provide clean food, water, and air, care, comfort, joy, security, and beauty. For everyone.

While we have the world’s attention, let’s show that mutual aid not only gets us through our crisis with less pain, it gets us a whole, healthy, beautiful world on the other side of it.

You can join us by offering and requesting stuff in the HUMANs global cooperative network, participate in one of our newly-hatching Common Funds, start or join projects within our collective framework, and start enjoying life as a lively human. All you need to get started can be found at mutualaidnetwork.org

Business Administration Course – From Barter to Bitcoin and Beyond: Re-imagining Money for a Sustainable Future

First Cycle Course. 7.5 credits

The Lund University offers an interesting course of Business Administration.

Learning outcomes

Growing inequality, apocalyptic environmental damage, and the protracted effects of a global financial crisis have resulted in a discussion on the role of our monetary system for the organization of society. At the same time, new technological and financial developments are giving rise to much experimentation on new forms of money. This course looks at various attempts to “re-imagine money.” It explores opportunities for addressing big societal challenges and asks in particular how new forms of money can contribute to developing more just and equal societies. A passing grade on the course will be awarded to students who:

1. Knowledge and understanding

  • Demonstrate an understanding of how our national and international monetary systems work.
  • Demonstrate an ability to identify relevant research topics within the are of international strategic management of trade and monetary exchange.

2. Competence and skills

  • Demonstrate an ability to integrate knowledge on international management, monetary theory, and digital technologies to analyse, assess and deal with issues related to various forms of local, national and international monies.
  • Demonstrate an ability to independently identify a social / environmental challenge and formulate a design for a monetary system addressing that challenge,
  • Demonstrate an ability to assess the potentials and limitations of particular monetary system and clearly present arguments of its strengths and weaknesses.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the future challenges and main issues related to international strategic management of glocal monetary systems.

3. Judgement and approach

  • Demonstrate an ability to assess the boundaries of the current monetary system and discuss the opportunities and limitations for change agents to impact it.
  • Demonstrate an ability to identify their need of further knowledge concerning monetary systems and technologies and to take responsibility for developing their knowledge.

Course content

Imagine you have the possibility to re-imagine our monetary system: Where would you start? How would you build it on the new monetary technologies? How would you work to make it more conducive to just and equal societies? The global financial crisis of 2008 marked the beginning of an intense discussion on the consequences of our monetary system on the organization of our societies. The concentration of wealth in “the one percent” in parallel to austerity policies, the increase of prices of financial assets parallel to a retrenchment of the welfare state have resulted in a generalised realisation that the monetary system has not been serving the interests of the population as a whole. The discussion on the organization of our monetary system is however as much driven by frustration towards the financial system as it is by excitement about new monetary developments. New payment systems (such as Swish or Apple Pay), the decline of cash, the emergence of digital currencies (such as Bitcoin and Ethereum) as well as local currencies (such as Time Dollars, Regiogeld or Transition Town currencies) and the development of new financial practices (such as P2P lending, crowdfunding or ICOs) are opening up our thinking on money and our possibilities to re-imagine, re-organize and re-claim money. That is, the changing nature of money is giving rise to a wave of experimentation on new forms of money. These experiments see money not as an obstruction but as a vehicle for constructing more sustainable economies, more resilient communities and more fair societies. While these new monetary ideas and real-life efforts may seem contradictory, money scholars, practitioners and activists agree that money needs to be re-organized, that this can be done from the bottom-up, and that we can indeed imaginatively engage with the future of money. This course is addressed to students who want to explore the idea that money can be re-designed. Students will be exposed to the theoretical and practical realities that come with “re-imagining money”. The course does not require previous knowledge in neither finance nor economics or technology. It however does ask students to be open to actively engage in re-thinking the monetary landscape. We will do this through a monetary workshop at the end of the course, in which student groups will be designing a monetary system for a particular social purpose.

Course design

The course combines a variety of methods, ranging from traditional lectures, case studies, interaction-based pedagogy, reading groups, student debates, group work, and money co-creation workshops. Students are expected to participate actively in class.

Assessment

Examination in this course is a two-step process:

  • Mid-course written exam; max. 2 pages. In a short written essay, students will be asked to describe an aspect of the current monetary system.
  • Final written take-home assignment; max. 5 pages. Students will be asked to design a monetary system to address a particular social / environmental challenge. In a written essay, students will be asked to present the monetary system they have designed and discuss its potential and limitations. This exam needs to engage the literature discussed throughout the course. The examiner, in consultation with Disability Support Services, may deviate from the regular form of examination in order to provide a permanently disabled student with a form of examination equivalent to that of a student without a disability. Sub-courses that are part of this course can be found in an appendix at the end of this document.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements for this course are that the student has taken courses in Business Administration corresponding to 30 credits

 

Further information can be found on:

www.lunduniversity.lu.se/Business-Administration-course

www.ijccr.net/Business-Administration-course

 

In June 2014 the European Central Bank dropped its base interest rate below 0% for the first time. It charges “negative interest” on overnight deposits of commercial banks and is not the first or only bank to do this. With this policy central banks hope to stimulate commercial banks to make loans into the real economy instead of depositing excess money with the central bank. As a result the inter-bank interest rates also fell below zero and some banks introduced fees on deposits in current accounts of large customers.

(New date to be confirmed)
The advent of the financial crisis caused economists, politicians and citizens to question the legitimacy of a debt-based money system and highlighted the need to reassess our beliefs about the nature of money and the workings of the banking sector.

Today, with a new financial crisis on the horizon, the need to understand and rethink money and banking seems more important than ever. In line with an increasing number of politicians and economists, we acknowledge the urgency of understanding the deficiencies of the current money system and the need to examine monetary reforms and alternative forms of money as means to create a more stable and sustainable future.

On this basis, Gode Penge and IMMR will gather international experts on March 21 2020 to assess and discuss advantages and disadvantages of various monetary reforms and new forms of money with the further aim of examining how a sustainable money system could be designed in today’s digitized and globalized world.

The speakers of the conference are:
– Prof. Dr. Thomas Mayer (Ex-Chief Economist of Deutsche Bank)
– Miguel Fernandez Angel Ordonez (Ex-President of the Spanish Central bank)
– Prof. Steve Keen (University College London)
– Prof. Michael Hudson (University of Missouri-Kansas City)
– Svein Harald Øygard (Former Central Bank Governor of Iceland and former Deputy Minister of Finance in Norway)
– Prof. Dr. Fabian Schär (University of Basel)
– Prof. Joseph Huber (Monetative)
– Prof. Ole Bjerg (Copenhagen Business School)
– Prof. Mary Mellor (University of Northumbria)
– Jón Helgi Egilsson (Monerium)
– Edgar Wortmann (lawyer and member of OnsGeld)
– Prof. Dr. Martijn Van Der Linden (The Hague University)
– Leander Bindewald (Ph.D. in economics and member of Monneta)

Attendance is free of charge. Book your ticket now on https://www.eventbrite.com/e/future-of-money-private-vs-sovereign-currencies-tickets-89462315193

For further information please visit our website: https://futureofmoney2020.godepenge.dk/

For discount on selected hotels in Copenhagen or any other inquiries you are more than welcome to contact us via conference2020@godepenge.dk

The online-summer school Alternative Economic and Monetary Systems (AEMS; 5 ECTS, completely in English) addresses the problems of the current economic and financial systems from a holistic perspective and offers an overview of innovative reform proposals. The interdisciplinary program is open to students and professionals of all fields, who get to learn about why a drastic systemic change is needed in order to reach the climate target of 1.5°C. The orientation towards illusory limitless growth will be critically questioned and discussed in digital lectures and discussions with experts from different fields, as well as in the final project work. This year, the AEMS will also feature ideas for solutions to the financial crisis triggered by COVID-19.

More information on the program and application process can be found here.

The report from 2019 with 51 participants from 23 nations can be found here. There is also an Image-Video available.

For more than two decades now, various forms of complementary currencies emerged all over the world, aiming at “taking back local economies” (North 2014). CCs are commonly understood as media of exchange (Hallsmith/Lietaer 2011) or accounting systems (Fare/Ould- Ahmed 2017) that are used within a particular group of users. Responding to broader debates on our current monetary system, they exemplify how civil society actors offer various attempts from the local to the global level to reconstruct money in order to make it a tool for economic, social, political and/or ecological purposes. In most cases, they tend to be, however, rather small and short-termed.

This panel addresses complementary currency schemes as actors of economic and social change. It particularly aims to identify factors that influence the success and longevity of such schemes. A comparative discussion of different forms and types shall help to explore what internal and external conditions seem to facilitate or hamper success. Related issues might also be discussed, such as the underlying ethics, the modes of economic exchange within the circuits, their contribution to sustainable development and/or resilience.

More information and contact on the organiser website: www.ramics.org

A new book by Bernard Lietaer shows the way to a sustainable world and calls for concrete measures from individuals and leaders.

Lietaer calls for a new perspective and three paradigm shifts essential for survival. With unsuitable means we half-heartedly try to repair the complicated clockwork of our world. This gets us nowhere. It won’t get us out of the crisis. The time has come to choose a completely different perspective and to lead ourselves and our world through “three paradigm shifts”.
This is what Bernard Lietaer demands in this book, which he dictated on his deathbed.

First: Recognize and adhereto the law of sustainability.
Lietaer shows that in our world we are dealing with “living systems” that are linked in many ways. With forests, our money, our society, and .. and .. and. Our well-being depends on the future sustainability of these systems. Lietaer’s “Law of the Sustainability of Living Systems”, developed with other experts, explains and specifies the principles ofsustainability: It says that living systems are only sustainable if they achieve a balance between productivity and elasticity. Balance, therefore, between short-term benefits of long-term existence. Just like that of Yin and Yang -not an “either -or”. We violate this law criminally. We have driven mostliving systemsout of balance. Monocultures of all kinds, for example, emphasize short-term benefits and are not even sustainablein the short term without massive additional costs, as Lietaer shows with the example of forests and today’s monetary system.Lietaer calls on readers to ensure that this law is recognizedand complied with. Both as individuals and as leaders in business and politics, readers arechallenged to balance the short-sighted overvaluation of rapid returnwith the preservation of resilience.

Second: Balance matrifocal and patrifocal values.
In order to viewour society within the framework of the law of sustainability, Bernard Lietaer uses the terms “matrifocal” (“give and maintain”) and “patrifocal” (“take and have”). Both men and women follow this pair of values, each person according to their personal orientation. From this point of view it becomes clear that here, too, we are violating the law of sustainability. All over the world we live bypatrifocal (“have”) values and neglect the matrifocal (“give”) side of balance, as we can seein our dealings with education, the elderly, people in need of care and with each other. Even though Lietaer sees signs of improvement, he does not only demand a fundamental change in our values in this area. He invites his readers to become aware of these values in themselves and to achieve their personal balance. Leaders must also establish and maintain a matrifocal/patrifocal balance in their areas of responsibility.

Third: Make personal information personal again.
An extremely important system for the sustainability of mankind is the flow of human information. It enables learning and solving problems together. This is also why the “General declarations of human rights” declares unhindered flow of information a principle human right. Bernard Lietaer shows that this system, which is essential for survival, is completely out of balance. Companies have centralized flow of information and exploit it to their advantage. We individuals have thus been dispossessed of our information and, from the point of view of the law of sustainability the information system has deeply slipped into the “productivity corner”. The answer, says Bernard Lietaer, is to restore personal ownership of our information. This must be achieved jointly by both IT companies and governments. A convincing message. Despite addressing at first glance a seemingly complex matter the book creates a convincing message – in simple and clear descriptions, examples and pictures.

“Towards a sustainable world” will be available here from Dec 2019. A German edition is planned for 2020.

More information on www.sustainable-world.ch

International conference on complementary currencies:

The Complementary Currencies and Societal Challenges conference will be held in Brussels, Belgium, organised by the Centre for European Research in Microfinance (CERMi) and the Research Association on Monetary Innovation and Community and Complementary Currency Systems (RAMICS).

The event is designed to include academic and practitioner knowledge and will be organized in two days:

 

  • November 21 (evening) – Closing event of (E)change Bruxelles project co-organized with Financité

This social event closes the (E)change Bruxelles action-research project co-organized between the Universite libre de Bruxelles and Financite. It celebrates the emergence of the new Brussels local currency ‘La Zinne’. Researchers participating to the research seminar of the 22nd November are welcome to join this social event, although it is not compulsory.

  • November 22: A research seminar (in English) on the following 5 themes:

–          CC and urban resilience

–          CC and civil society

–          Technology and CC

–          CC and entrepreneurship

–          Ethics and CC

The surge of growth of cryptocurrencies and digital money have recently caught the attention of both management scholars and practitioners (Brière et al., 2015; Dodgson et al., 2015; Iansiti & Lakhani, 2017; Lehr & Lamb, 2018; Michelman, 2017; Posnett, 2015; Vergne & Swain, 2017). However, cryptocurrencies are only one of the latest forms of complementary currencies (Blanc, 2016). Before the emergence of cryptocurrencies, complementary currencies were mainly conceived of and issued by citizens, nonprofits, businesses, and even local public administrations, and circulated within a defined geographical region or community (Cohen, 2017; Dissaux & Fare, 2017; Guéorguieva-Bringuier & Ottaviani, 2018; Lietaer, 2001). Also known as local, social, regional and alternative currencies, these complementary currency systems are often developed to respond to societal needs and aspirations that official currencies do not address (Meyer & Hudon, 2017; Fraňková et al., 2017; North, 2007). Specifically, they can be designed to promote sustainable behavior, build community social capital, and foster trade and local development (Blanc & Fare, 2013; Collom, 2007; Gomez & Helmsing, 2008; Marshall & O’Neill, 2018; Seyfang & Longhurst, 2013). For example, inter-enterprise currencies are mainly used in business-to-business networks in order to facilitate the exchange of goods and services between small and medium-sized enterprises (Meyer & Hudon, Forthcoming; Stodder, 2009).

Complementary currencies are socio-economic innovations aiming to address societal challenges of social cohesion, economic inclusion and environmental preservation (Stodder, 2009; Joachain & Klopfert, 2014; Michel & Hudon, 2015, Sanz, 2016). This conference aims to gather researchers and practitioners to explore and debate the potential of complementary currencies for sustainable development and socio-economic resilience (Ulanowicz et al., 2009; Gregory, 2014; Graugaard, 2012). We believe that the topic is one that is predestined for cross-disciplinary research and for thinking beyond established boundaries. We invite conceptual and empirical submissions drawing on a range of theoretical perspectives and diverse methodologies to explore complementary currencies, including researchers working on cryptocurrencies.

For questions, please contact the organisers: Marek Hudon (mhudon@ulb.ac.be); Hélène Joachain (helene.joachain@ulb.ac.be) and Camille Meyer (cmeyer@uvic.ca)

 

In the wake of the 2008 crisis, governments worldwide have rescued the financial system at a high societal cost, yet without a systemic reform to correct its weaknesses. Today a broad reflection is emerging on how to create a more stable financial system at the service of people and planet. Many actors inside and outside of the financial sector are pushing past current practices and mind-sets with a view to making our money more sustainable.
A shift in the financial system seems well underway. Technologies like Blockchain allow a range of societal actors to create decentralised money systems. Civil society actors put pressure on the financial sector to act more responsibly. And if Facebook’s 2,3 billion users accept Libra as means of exchange, the monopoly of fiat money will be a thing of the past. How can policy makers ensure all these evolutions contribute to a sustainable and just world?

IN THIS CONTEXT THE WORK OF BERNARD LIETAER (1942-2019) ON SUSTAINABLE FINANCIAL ECOSYSTEMS IS MORE RELEVANT THAN EVER.

The aim of this think tank event organised by the Club of Rome EU-chapter is to explore the core insights of his work, and to discuss with participants the leverages at policy level that are needed today.
More information on facebook.

The Summer School Alternative Economic and Monetary Systems (Vienna, 5 ECTS, completely in English) is open to students and professionals of all fields and offers alternatives to the processes that are putting strains on our economic and eco-social boundaries. In addition to classic and new concepts from the field of economics, students will also hear presentations from natural and social sciences and discuss the actual leeway for economic and monetary reform. Reports from the last years can be found here.

More information and how to apply here.