This paper introduces the concept of social support as a social effect of community currencies and explores different ways of measuring it. We used a questionnaire survey and social network analysis of transactional records to conduct a comparative case study of two community currency organizations: Ichi-Muraoka in Japan and Bytesring Stockholm (BYTS) in Sweden. Our analysis yielded the following results with respect to social support provided by community currencies: (1) while the transfer of social support by community currencies does not affect the quality of life of all users in a significant way, it makes users aware that social support can be part of their lives if they become conscious of it; and (2) community currencies are peripheral and supplementary support sources for many local residents. These results show that community currencies are effective as a system to provide social support to local residents.
Hiromi Nakazato and Takeshi Hiramoto
To cite this article: Nakazato, H. and Hiramoto, T. (2012) ‘An Empirical Study of the Social Effects of Community Currencies’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 16 (D) 124-135 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547 http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2012.019