Trophic currencies: ecosystem modeling and resilient economies

Wealth is limited. We propose that value is infinite. Any currency isolates certain forms of value to transform into wealth, but those other forms of value remain even as they are undervalued. An economic system with a single currency will only recognize a very limited set of activities as valuable. As a consequence, many of the activities that constitute a functional community, and in turn a functional economy, lie outside of the value analysis of our existing economies. In this paper we present a theoretical currency model analogous to trophic food chains. As plants, grazers, and predators all have different perspective on value and operate accordingly, so do similar distinctions exist in society. We suggest that appropriately differentiated currencies from supranational currencies to regional, sectoral and down to timebanking and nonreciprocal exchanges can help better activate the value in the world, empowering communities and economies.

Marc Brakken, Preston Austin, Stephanie Rearick and Leander Bindewald
To cite this article: Brakken, M., Austin, P., Rearick, S. and Bindewald, L. (2012) ‘Trophic currencies: ecosystem modeling and resilient economies’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 16 (D) 169-175  <> ISSN  1325-9547