Against a backdrop of citizenry’s mistrust towards the governments of their own countries   successive economic crises over the years have further widened the gap between the local and central institutions. In view of these challenges, complementary currencies may be able to reconnect the knots of the citizens with formal institutions (and vice versa).

Many experiences with complementary means of payment in recent years have resulted in systems of mutual exchange traceable to business communities, with the creation of closed circuits in which members voluntarily exchange goods and services, offsetting debts with credits. Or with initiatives characterized by solidarity and participatory systems aimed at strengthening community relations for development that aims at being financially and economically sustainable. One of the unknowns often encountered is the relationship with national and subnational institutions and in particular on the presence or absence of specific state regulatory references. In the case, in fact, of weakness of state norms, the production of goods and services has moved “regardless” of such references, eschewing the formal economy. The need to meet the motivations from below, born to avoid processes of impoverishment of communities, through the use of complementary monetary circulation systems, and the ability of regional and local institutions to transpose the pushes from below are at the basis of the possibility of creating social innovation or, in negative cases, an economic reality at the edge of the invisible. It is therefore on these issues that we invite researchers, activists and anyone interested in such processes to the conference entitled: “The Future of Money: Democracy, Localism and Inclusion.”

Themes for paper presentations are:

  • Digitalization – Can CCS help bridge the distance between the technological and digital divides. Suggested key words: 4th industrial revolution, Digital currencies, Crypto currencies etc.
  • Regional/Local Communication between local/ regional administrations and communities through CCS. Suggested key words: Decentralization, Decommodification, (Re-)Distribution, Social cohesion, social innovation, Community resilience, Community development and Local development.
  • Welfare state how CCS can help the social system. Suggested key words: Debt crises, Poverty, Inequality, Liquidity, Inflation, Ethical finance, Social harmony, Social justice, etc.
  • Enviroment The role of the CCS in the field of sustainable and biodiversity. Suggested key words: Perpetual pandemics, Energy transition, Natural resources, Ecology, Green New Deal, Green investment.
  • Historical – the different economic, social and cultural phases of the history of complementary currencies. Suggested key words: history, transition phases, civil society, currency.
  • CCS – Review and renew. Case studies, concepts, experience reports.

Deadlines for submission of papers, registration and more information will be published in due time on

Has ESG replaced conversations about sustainability and impact? Join us on 8 November for an important conversation with experts in values-based banking about the opportunities and limits of ESG. Together, they will examine ESG as a helpful starting point for financial institutions but not as an end goal in itself.

The session aims to encourage banks to Think Bolder so that their actions and ambitions can change the rules of the game and move towards sustainable market transformation.


More information and registration here.


The positive push back of ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) factors in big companies and banks may lead to a comprehension of sustainability limited to risk screening, data and compliance. But, what about impact creation? 

With the rise of ESG at traditional banks, it is even more important to be clear on what can be achieved with ESG screening and what additional impact can be created with a bolder approach to banking, centred on enabling social empowerment, economic prosperity and environmental regeneration. That is a Triple Bottom Line approach.

Values-based banks are redefining the role of finance in society by going beyond the focus on ESG data. They lead the transformation of banking and finance in their respective communities, countries and regions, and expand their impact by supporting others in the way to change. They do not settle for being clean fish in polluted waters.

Join us for an important conversation with experts in values-based banking about the opportunities and limits of ESG. The panel discussion will include the following speakers:

  • Tommaso Rondinella, Head of Impact Models and Socio-Environmental Assessment of Banca Etica (Italy)
  • Avelina Perez, Corporate Affairs Director at Banco Solidario (Ecuador)
  • Sharad Tegi Tuladhar, Chief Policy, Environmental and Social Officer at NMB Bank (Nepal)

The dialogue will be moderated by Dr. Adriana-Kocornik-Mina, Research and Metrics Senior Manager at the GABV. The session will be in English, with Spanish translation available.

Together, they will examine ESG as a helpful starting point for financial institutions but not as an end goal in itself. As the speakers come from different geographical regions and cultural environments, they will offer a diverse approach to how they are overcoming the barriers to sustainable outcomes.

The session aims to encourage banks to Think Bolder so that their actions and ambitions can change the rules of the game and move towards sustainable market transformation.


More information and registration here.

Who really benefits from a cashless society?

Many of us rarely use cash these days. And the reach of corporations into our lives via cards and apps has never been greater. But what we’re told is inevitable is actually the work of powerful interests: the great battle of our time is for ownership of the digital footprints that make up our lives.Cloudmoney tells a revelatory story about the fusion of big finance and tech, which requires physical cash to be replaced by digital money or ‘cloudmoney’. Diving beneath the surface of the global financial system, Brett Scott uncovers a long-established lobbying infrastructure waging a covert war on cash under the banner of progress but at the cost of our privacy, politics and individual freedom.

The book was first published in 2022 and is available as hardcover, ebook and (from July 2023) in a paperback edition. For details see the website of the publisher Bodley Head (Penguin).

Every design, every idea, every transformation, no matter how urgent, is confronted with monetary issues at some point. The roots and effects of current wars,  the climate and energy crises, and the causes of social and technological injustice and poverty are closely connected to the financial markets, to profits or losses, to greed or generosity.

The motto of re:publica 2023 is therefore – blatantly and  directly in your face:


When we read that the richest ten percent of the world’s population are responsible for 50% of CO2 emissions, it becomes clear that the other 90% will not stop climate change, even if they would cease to exist.

At re:publica 2023, we therefore want to follow the flow of money. Where does it come from? Where does it flow to? Where does it silt up in questionable stock markets, and where does it help to provide water for people’s fields? What are governmental responsibilities in digitization? What is being privatized and why? And what could alternatives oriented towards the common good look like?

We want to dicsuss whether democracies and social welfare systems are luxuries that have fallen out of time, or if is rather the construct of the global market economy that is threatening to collapse under the consequences of the multitude of crises.

We are deliberately not talking about economic deals, investments, scale ups, business opportunities or any other euphemisms originating from the financial industry. We are addressing the issue right on, we are speaking about: CASH. (*)

We want to ask: What does CASH mean to us and how does it impact the climate emergency or the protection of human rights? We believe a different way of thinking about money is not only necessary, but also crucial to tackle the biggest challenges of our time.

Because in every problem lies a solution, we therefore ask: “Whats the cost?” We are looking for the positive power of money, the market, trade and a profit that does not only benefit a priviledged few.

(*) CASH is to be understood here as a synonym for money, not as a distinction between cash and cashless forms of payment.

More information and tickets at


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Brett Scott presented his new book “Cloud Money – Cash, Cards, Crypto and the war for our wallets” on Friday February 17, 2023 at a monneta online conference.

The digitization of money is tightening the link between Big Tech and Big Finance. Our data, especially our payment data, is the gold of the future.

  • Will the greatest power of the future be in the hands of those, who can access and use our data?
  • Who benefits from a cashless society and who gets left behind?
  • How can democracies prevent mass surveillance, censorship and manipulation on the basis of Big Data?

The author Brett Scott has written extensively on financial reform, digital finance, alternative currencies, blockchain technology and the cashless society. He is a monetary anthropologist, a former derivative broker and a campaigner for monetary reform.

In times of crisis we are confronted with inflation, poverty and inequality .But Euros are scares and the huge Euro-System cannot solve all issues. Would more diversity in currencies help?
Yes – is the answer given by advocates and practitioners of complementary currencies. These do not aim to replace the Euro but supplement it in various ways. They are smaller, voluntary, more flexible in fulfilling various needs, from the support of the local economy, environmental protection and social cohesion. This video presents examples and explanations.

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An interdisciplinary summer university (5ECTS), focusing on alternatives to the economic status quo: International participants deal with limits of growth, as well as the instabilities of our financial system and learn why a drastic system change is necessary to stabilize the world climate at 1.5°C. The program offers a holistic approach, with the participants learning about many possible alternatives and reform proposals: heterodox economics, ethical banking, degrowth, sovereign money and more!

AEMS is an academic summer program with a global following and held in English. Since 2014, the program counts almost 400 alumni of 76 nationalities.

This summer, it will take place already for the 10th time from July 17 to August 4, 2023! Applications are open!


Target group

The program is open to students and professionals from all fields who strive to create a more just and green future. Are you looking for a unique educational program with a holistic approach to the topic? Then look no further! Scholarships available.

The report from the last years can be found here.

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

What may money look like in a sustainable, thriveable society?

A survey of innovative economics teaching turned up numerous adjectives: not only doughnut economics but also plural economics, regenerative economics, sustainable economics, intentional economics, quantum economics…

…but sadly little new content.

One reason: the nature of money is taken as a more

Like numerous central banks around the globe, the European Central Bank (ECB) has started an investigation phase in view of the probable launch of a central bank digital currency (CBDC), the “digital euro”. This study (published in January 2023) explains what is at stake and how a digital euro could be designed as a safer, more inclusive and cost-free means of payment compared to current payment solutions, leading to a more resilient monetary system and more respect for individuals’ privacy.


Download the publication here (PDF) 



The transformative potential of the digital euro will get lost if it is designed to be accessible and usable only through private intermediaries, as currently planned by the ECB. A public option is needed for the digital euro and this solution would be complementary to what the market can offer. This is not only desirable but also feasible to implement.

The main argument against the public option is that it could lead to massive deposits flights from commercial banks, with dire consequences for the universal banking model and the whole economy. That is why the ECB seems to discard any investigation that could lead to ground-breaking innovation. However, we claim these concerns are overstated.

The stakes are high but the policy debate about the digital euro is particularly difficult to grasp, as the issue often seems excessively technical. However, technical choices are not neutral: they will have crucial impacts on what the digital euro will and will not be able to perform in the future.

A digital euro could also improve international transfers and payments, especially benefiting people having cross-border life situations between a eurozone and a non-eurozone country.

Besides its payment functions, a digital euro will open possibilities for new policies that could be particularly useful to support the economy in times of slowdown or to accelerate the ecological transition.

Therefore, we need a broad political discussion about the objectives to be fulfilled by the digital euro, and a policy debate linking objectives to technical options before any commitment is made.

The ongoing investigation phase will be decisive: it should be focused on objectives and be more open to other stakeholders than the financial industry.