What is the potential for community currencies to deliver positive public health outcomes? Case study of Time Credits in Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, UK

Gemma Burgess

University of Cambridge, Department of Land Economy, Cambridge Centre for Housing and Planning Research, 19 Silver Street, Cambridge, CB3 9EP, Glb36@cam.ac.uk

There is evidence that increased levels of community engagement and social participation can improve population health. Community currencies such as Time Credits are one way to support and encourage people to be more involved in their local community. As a result, they have attracted investment by local governments in the UK, with the hope of finding new ways to work with deprived communities, improve individual outcomes that lead to better health, and reduce the use of public services at a time of financial austerity.

The aim of this research was to evaluate the health related outcomes of volunteering through Time Credits in Wisbech, Cambridgeshire. The conceptual model developed during the research shows how Time Credits were expected to influence some of the social determinants of health and, by doing so, enhance health outcomes and reduce health inequalities. This in depth empirical study shows the potential of such activity to support pathways to better health, but equally demonstrates the challenges in quantifying such outcomes and in evidencing any reduction in the use of public services as a result.

Article Burgess

To cite this article: Gemma Burgess (2017) ‘What is the potential for community currencies to deliver positive public health outcomes? Case study of Time Credits in Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, UK’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2017 Volume 21 (Summer) 19-32 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547. DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2017.006

The bright and the dark side of virtual currencies

Milenko Josavac

Harderstrasse 35, 3800 Interlaken, Switzerland. E-Mail: m.josavac@gmail.com

The scope of this article is to examine the positive (bright) and negative (dark) aspects of virtual currencies by critically assessing the relevant literature. In addition, the findings from the bright and dark side are the groundwork for the discussion of how crime prevention units and financial supervisors addressed to specific issues with virtual money. On the bright side, virtual currencies can provide a reasonable level of privacy but are not fully anonymous. Second, the academic discussion about the price stability of Bitcoins is split into two opposing groups. Critics find that the decentralised feature of virtual currencies is a significant disadvantage of the technology because it seriously reduces the flexibility to respond to economic shocks. In contrast, supporters argue that centralised operations by monetary authorities are actually inducting financial instability. Third, virtual currencies charge in overall less fees for payments and achieve similar processing speed compared to electronic payment systems. On the dark side, virtual currencies mainly operate outside the banking system and do not endanger the global financial stability at this stage of development. Second, technical improvements in the technology could increase consumer protection similar to established payment services. Finally, the lack of physical contact provides more options for money laundering and tax evasion than traditional ways do. In conclusion, the global legislation is still hesitant to implement a robust regulatory framework. As such, the effect of the recent legislation by crime prevention units and financial supervisors remains toothless.

Article Josavac.pdf

To cite this article: Milenko Josavac (2017) ‘The Bright and the Dark Side of Virtual Currencies. Recent Development in Regulatory Framework’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2017 Volume 21 (Summer) 1-18 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547. DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2017.005

Using Simulation and Gaming to Design a Community Currency System

Masayuki Yoshida* and Shigeto Kobayashi**

* Joetsu University of Education, Japan, Email: yoshida@juen.ac.jp

** Japan Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, Japan Email: s-kobaya@jaist.ac.jp

(Authors with equal contribution)

We position gaming and simulation as one method for designing a community currency (CC) that matches the local customs and institutions at the introductory stage and discuss the effects of this method by analysing the results of the attempts made so far. In order to learn the CC system and to promote common understanding among different stakeholders, we made The Community Currency Game (CCG). We implemented the gaming to the residents who were planning to introduce a CC into their town. In the gaming, participants’ attitudes towards the diversity of money were positively affected and they began to recognize that the social network created by CC is important to the region. We found that through the virtual use of a CC in gaming, it is possible to share knowledge of participants’ perception of the CC and their resulting behaviours and utilize this knowledge to discuss a fundamental aspect of the CC and its design. We constructed a computer simulation model based on CCG to identify the factors that promote the circulation of CC. We found that the purchase rates of the area within town increased within three parameters: the premium rate of CC, the proportion of the CC in salaries, and the probability of volunteers with CC. As residents began to offer discounts according to the premium rate of the CC, shop evaluations inside the area increased. Therefore, this policy stimulates the local economy. However, the cost of the CC issue increased owing to the premium. On the other hand, policies in which the resident agents’ salaries were paid with CC and volunteers were paid by residents with CC are sustainable. These policies do not directly stimulate purchases inside the town. However, the purchase rate of the area within town gradually increases with the ratio of the CC in salaries. Moreover, the probability of volunteers increases according to habitual use of CC, community-oriented values, and the balance of CC. In this study, we found that simulation is an excellent method of presenting specific scenarios for a CC design based on the discussion in the gaming. Within the cooperative relationship between community residents and researchers, a method utilizing both gaming and simulation can be effective in designing a CC in the introductory stage, which until now, has been carried out on an ad hoc basis.

This paper focuses on the diverse development of modern community currencies (CCs) in Japan and provides a classification of them by type. Modern CCs appeared in the early 1970s and since then various types have circulated globally. With the increase in CC practices, academic research into CCs has emerged as a growing area of interest. However, since CC systems are diverse, it is difficult to obtain a commonly recognized definition of CCs, or criteria for their classification according to their characteristics. Since this problem is shared even by international researchers, it has become an important issue in the field. In this study, we confirm the definition and classification of CCs by surveying previous studies on Japanese CCs. Furthermore, this paper reveals the reality of CC systems that continue to evolve through a process of development and decline, by looking back at their history. In order to explain the evolutionary process, we employ the concept of “countermovement,” as advocated by economic anthropologist Karl Polanyi. Based on our outcomes, we describe three stages in the evolution of CCs, which are the reciprocal realm, integration between the reciprocal and market realms, and new realms.

Article Yoshida & Kobayashi

To cite this article: Masayuki Yoshida and Shigeto Kobayashi (2018) ‘Using Simulation and Gaming to Design a Community Currency System’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2018 Volume 22 (Winter) 132-144 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2018.011


The Diversity and Evolutionary Process of Modern Community Currencies in Japan

Yoshihisa Miyazaki* and Ken-ichi Kurita**

* National Institute of Technology, Sendai College, Miyagi, Japan, Email: frontier-spirit-21-y.m@nifty.com

** Kokusai Junior College, Tokyo, Japan. Email: kuririne@nifty.com

(Authors with equal contribution)

This paper focuses on the diverse development of modern community currencies (CCs) in Japan, and provides a classification of them by type. Modern CCs appeared in the early 1970s and since then various types have circulated globally. With the increase in CC practices, academic research into CCs has emerged as a growing area of interest. However, since CC systems are diverse, it is difficult to obtain a commonly recognized definition of CCs, or criteria for their classification according to their characteristics. Since this problem is shared even by international researchers, it has become an important issue in the field. In this study, we confirm the definition and classification of CCs by surveying previous studies on Japanese CCs. Furthermore, this paper reveals the reality of CC systems that continue to evolve through a process of development and decline, by looking back at their history. In order to explain the evolutionary process, we employ the concept of “countermovement,” as advocated by economic anthropologist Karl Polanyi. Based on our outcomes, we describe three stages in the evolution of CCs, which are the reciprocal realm, integration between the reciprocal and market realms, and new realms.

Article Miyazaki and Kurita

To cite this article:  Yoshihisa Miyazaki and Ken-ichi Kurita (2018) ‘The diversity and evolutionary process of modern community currencies in Japan’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2018 Volume 22 (Winter) 120-131 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2018.010

Implementation of modern barter exchange system in Bulgaria: From an objective necessity to an objective performance

Rositsa Toncheva

University of National and World Economy, Bulgaria, Email: r@toncheva.comhttp://www.toncheva.com

This paper presents the results from an expert survey on the possibility of a modern barter exchange system (MBES) to be implemented in Bulgaria. MBES is shown as an abstract theoretical construction which helps uncover the reasons why such schemes are successful in a number of countries with different social and cultural characteristics, while in Bulgaria this phenomenon is not popular. Sadly, the results show that there is no readiness for participation in MBES. It is seen mainly as a social structure but the expectations are that it would work as a business entity. The research has found that the idea behind MBES is inapplicable under certain conditions, such as those in Bulgaria with its typical characteristics of today. Even though the MBES models are usually successful in other countries, this is probably due to the fact that those are mostly socially mature (homogenous) societies in countries with a well-developed economic infrastructure. The survey is framed by the logic of the questionaries’ boundaries and the interviewed actors.

Article Toncheva

To cite this article: Rositsa Toncheva (2018) ‘Implementation of a Modern Barter Exchange System in Bulgaria: from an objective necessity to an objective performance’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2018 Volume 22 (Winter) 103-119 <www.ijccr.net>ISSN 1325-9547. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2018.009

Assessing Local Mutual Credit as a Socioeconomic Tool for Farmers in New York State’s Hudson Valley

Andrew Bonanno

University of Georgia Department of Anthropology, Email: avb86893@uga.edu

Thousands of local mutual credit networks and other complementary currency systems have been developed worldwide in the last several decades. Many of these systems strive to support local economic activities such as small-scale agriculture. Although mutual credit systems and similar schemes have had significant social and economic impacts under certain conditions, they often fail to meet participants’ goals.  Nevertheless, new mutual credit systems continue to emerge. This paper analyzes the complete transactional history of one such system—the Hudson Valley Current (HVC)—from March 1, 2014, to February 28, 2015. Building on existing community currency metrics, a transaction performance ratio is introduced to understand credit flow within the HVC. Network linkage densities are also calculated to gauge potential for social capital creation. While the HVC has not been used as a significant means of exchange for farmers, metrics indicate that the HVC is a generally viable source of mutual credit and social linkage creation for some participants, at least in the short-run. Continued application of these metrics by mutual credit administrators, combined with purposeful partnerships with local farmers, might allow any potential benefits of system participation to be maintained and extended to include local farmers in a significant way.

Article Bonanno

To cite this article: Andrew Bonanno (2018) ‘Assessing Local Mutual Credit as a Socioeconomic Tool for Farmers’ in New York State’s Hudson Valley’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2018 Volume 22 (Winter) 89-102 <www.ijccr.net>ISSN 1325-9547. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2018.008

Impact assessment method: sustainability with existing frameworks and integral approach

Christophe Place

Haute École de Gestion de Genève – Geneva – Switzerland, Email : christophe.place@gmail.com

Implementation of monetary innovation for social innovation network development may be appropriate as a reliable exchange and an incentive system for community value co-creation between stakeholders and sustainable regional development. Nevertheless, some questions remain: (1) What context and objective favour the implementation of monetary innovation? (2) How to enhance and evaluate the impacts of such innovations? To contribute to these research questions, a synthesis of 4 reference currency evaluation studies and 3 assessment frameworks standards, such as Sustainable Development Goals, Impact Reporting and Investment Standards and Global Reporting Initiative, will allow us to not only improve a previous impact assessment method of 71 indicators, by integrating an integral approach categorization, but also to qualitatively assess a recently launched currency, the Léman case study, as a first impetus with 34 indicators. Beyond policy intervention, networks of individuals and organisations may integrate an impact assessment method with an integral approach and continuous improvement process, to reach economic, social, environmental, governance and cultural impacts to evaluate the interest of supporting such initiatives. Further research is needed to develop this impact assessment framework, especially a bottom-up methodology.

Article C. Place

To cite this article: Christophe Place (2018) ‘Impact assessment of monetary innovation: sustainability with existing frameworks and integral approach’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2018 Volume 22 (Winter) 74-88 <www.ijccr.net. ISSN 1325-9547. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2018.007

Contrasted cases. Successes and failures of local currency schemes in France since 2010

Jérôme Blanc* and Marie Fare**

* Université de Lyon / Sciences Po Lyon, Triangle

** Université de Lyon / Université Lumière Lyon 2, Triangle

This text contemplates the difficulties of French local currencies and the pathways to improvement, in the event of greater sustainability at the local level. After a panorama of the French local currencies, and the observation of a disappointment from a quantity viewpoint, the paper discusses requirements and improvements for a local currency (LC) to contribute to a greater sustainability at the local level. It presents the notion of the relevant territory for a local currency. It then discusses a few crucial points of improvement and the difficulties they face: the role of local governments as major partners; the need for employees in order to constitute a permanent basis for the scheme’s activity and development; the need for an digital counterpart of the currency; the need for financing activities. The conditions for a ripple effect are eventually discussed.

Article Blanc and Fare

To cite this article: Jérôme Blanc and Marie Fare (2018) ‘Pathways to Improvement. Successes and Difficulties of Local Currency Schemes in France since 2010’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2018 Volume 22 (Winter) 60-73 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2018.006

Could scaling up time currencies reduce working time, enlarge participatory democracy and redistribute wealth?

Bruno Théret

IRISSO, CNRS – Université Paris Dauphine, PSL Research University, Email: bruno.theret@wanadoo.fr

In this article we present a proposal of a scaled-up time bank and currency at the national level. The aim of such a time currency managed by the State (or any regional public power) would be to link a legal reduction of work time in the market sphere to the development of an active – participatory – citizenship, and a reduction of economic inequalities through a redistribution of wealth. Paradoxically, we spend much of our lives working in order to finance through taxes political and administrative activities that we could for the most part exercise ourselves, yet from which we are excluded because of the rationing of disposable political time and the liberal-bureaucratic constitution of the state. The proposal starts from the idea that taxes paid for by additional work in a capitalist economy can be at least partially replaced by transferring work hours from market to civic activities. It entails that the reduction of work time should be seen not only as a way to reduce unemployment in the market sphere, but also as a political device allowing the development of participatory democracy through the payment of taxes “in kind”, i.e. in hours of political and administrative activities. Moreover, the value of these activities could be recognized by a national time bank or treasury issuing a time currency which would be required in order to pay a democratically determined share of the tax burden. This device would be all the more interesting in that it would not necessarily imply lower salaries or re-investable profit. All that would be required is that reduced work hours be matched by tax cuts accompanied by corresponding cuts in public spending. The latter, in turn, would be offset by increased civic involvement in political activity and public services. The impact of this transfer of time on economic inequalities could be overwhelming but would depend on the tariff of national time currency in the legal tender market currency.

Article Theret

To cite this article: Bruno Théret (2018) ‘How scaled up time currencies could be used in order to reduce work time, enlarge participatory democracy and redistribute wealth’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2018 Volume 22 (Winter) 50-59 <www.ijccr.net>ISSN 1325-9547. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2018.005

Financing for development: a monetary issue in which money has no say

Tristan Dissaux

Laboratoire Triangle, UMR 5206, Université Lyon 2, France, Email: tristan.dissaux@gmail.com

For developing countries, financing needs remain important, especially to meet the Sustainable Development Goals. This paper deals with the problematic of financing for development (FfD), by focusing on what we think to be its major blind spot: money. If development is far from being only about money, its financing does have monetary aspects, which are most often omitted. We first emphasise the current prevailing FfD paradigm and show that it stands on a particular theoretical corpus. In particular, it adopts a restrictive understanding of money, carrying important political, economic and social implications. Against what can be described as a non-monetary approach to financing for development, we consider the nature and origins of money. In this light, the current FfD paradigm appears as inconsistent, while tools such as social and complementary currencies can be relevant. We here explore their participation to financing and their potentials regarding this issue.

Article Dissaux

To cite this article: Tristan Dissaux (2018) ‘Financing for development: a monetary issue in which money has no say’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2018 Volume 22 (Winter) 37-49 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547. http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2018.004

Understanding the diversity of CCs worldwide in globalization and deindustrialisation as an evolutionary tree diagram

Makoto Nishibe

Senshu University, School of Economics – Email: nishibe@isc.senshu-u.ac.jp

The main purpose of the paper is to explain why vast diversity of community currencies (CCs) arise both within “developed countries” and between “developed” and “developing” countries, and to provide an evolutionary tree diagram, rather than taxonomy, of CCs that continue to vary in globalization and deindustrialization as two long-term socioeconomic tendencies since the 1970s. To accomplish the end, we explain that globalization and deindustrialization in modern capitalist economy caused various economic, social and cultural problems and CCs were introduced to solve the problems caused by the tendencies, and that such diversity of the problems brought about the diversity of CCs as solutions for them, and we presume that, according to ‘reality oriented categorization,’ such diversity of CCs is described in a tree diagram with such two underling dimensions corresponding to the two socioeconomic tendencies as: x) economic and/or social-cultural media as two basic components of CCs in globalization and y) primary and secondary and/or tertiary industry regarding deindustrialization. Thus the initial archetype of the tree diagram is identified as “industrializing- economic/complementary” CCs seen in the past developed countries and the present developing countries that evolved into three branches of CCs (“industrializing-local/territorial”, “deindustrializing-cultural/community” and “deindustrializing-economic/complementary”). Finally, we take up Banco Palmas in Brazil to examine if it can be regarded as the typical case of an industrializing-economic/complementary CC in developing countries in the tree diagram of CCs and suggest implications for CCs in the future.

Article Nishibe

To cite this article:

Makoto Nishibe (2018) ‘Understanding the diversity of CCS world-wide in globalization and deindustrialization as an evolutionary tree diagram’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2018 Volume 22 (Winter) 16-36 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547.  DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2018.003

Complementary currencies and the financing of investments in long-term assets

Rolf F.H. Schroeder

Independent author, Bremen, Germany.  rolfschroeder.h@t-online.de. www.rolf-f-h-schroeder.de

Article Schroeder

The question raised in this article is whether the focus on “money”, as the key concept in the analysis of community or complementary currencies, is justified. The investigation shows that the economies which facilitate exchange with alternative currencies are also based on “capital.” In some cases, capital is created within a community or complementary currencies; in others, synergies exist between the alternative currencies and other ways of financing long-term assets like microfinancing schemes. In order to better understand the grey zones between these different spheres an all-encompassing use of the notion of “money” should be avoided.

To cite this article: Rolf E.F. Schroeder (2018) ‘Complementary Currencies and the Financing of Investments in Long-term Assets’ International Journal of Community Currency Research2018 Volume 22 (Winter) 4-14 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2018.002

Identifying barriers and solutions to adoption of social, complementary and/or virtual currencies

Clara Inés Peña de Carrillo*, Josep Lluís de la Rosa i Esteva**, Paulo Nicolás Carrillo Peña**, Peter Pharow***

* Universidad Autónoma de Bucaramanga, Bucaramanga, Colombia. Email: cpena212@unab.edu.co

** Universitat de Girona, Arlab research group, Girona, Spain

*** Fraunhofer IDMT, Ilmenau, Germany

With the advent of social and mobile networks, new online communities are being created around sustainable topics (e.g. environmental, social, community development). The phenomena, known as digital social innovation, generates a positive ecosystem where business and social development enabled with new behaviors boosted by social, complementary or community currencies deployed as virtual currencies have a great potential for competitiveness, and entrepreneurship, but also for fostering social responsibility in Europe. This document summarizes actions carried out through the Vircoin2SME European community project (social, complementary or community virtual currencies transfer of knowledge to SME: a new era for competitiveness and entrepreneurship) for identification of barriers and their possible solutions to reduce them in the context of the adoption of social, complementary and virtual currencies by SMEs and consumers. The Case Study method allowed identifying these barriers almost at all on the basis of RES (digital currency of Belgium) and Eurakos (virtual currency of Girona, Spain) complementary currencies operation by which the Vircoin2SME researchers had close contact. Data analyzed were taken through observation, being the project researchers’ direct users of these currencies and, the information records stored in databases concerning the users’ interactions (transactions in trades associated with the RES and Eurakos networks). This research was supported by the European Union’s Framework Programme for Research and Innovation Horizon 2020 (2014-2020) under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Grant Agreement No. 654767.

Article Peña de Carrillo et al

To cite this article: Peña de Carrillo, Clara; de la Rosa i Esteva, Josep Lluís; Carrillo Peña, Paulo Nicolás and Pharow, Peter (2018) ‘Identification of barriers and solutions for adoption of social, complementary and/or virtual currencies” International Journal of Community Currency Research 2018 Volume 22 (Summer) 125-140 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2018.020

Sustainability of local complementary currencies: conclusions from an empirical study in Poland

Grzegorz Sobiecki

SGH Warsaw School of Economics, Poland; gsobie@sgh.waw.pl

This paper draws out key conclusions from a research project – a pilot empirical study on local complementary currencies (exchange systems). The study comprised 15 interviews with coordinators representing 13 existing alternative currency systems in Poland out of 20 identified. The research was conducted between February and April 2017. The main goal of the study was empirical determination of the factors involved in the rise and fall of alternative currencies systems in Poland and conditions for their survival – that is, sustainability factors. The author demonstrated that, among examined system, two are performing better than the others, and they meet the efficiency conditions: they have a relatively high and stable or growing number of active members and exchanges, and they are constantly developed without reporting any substantial problems. Despite many differences, they have much in common. The analysis of the two examples in comparison with other systems enabled forming a list of sustainability factors and suggestions for the coordinators or initiators concerning how and what to do and what to avoid to make the system more sustainable.

Article Sobiecki

To cite this article: Sobiecki, Grzegorz (2018) ‘Sustainability of local complementary currencies – Conclusions from an empirical study in Poland’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2018 Volume 22 (Summer) 105-124 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547. DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2018.019

Swiss currency systems: atlas, compendium and chronicle of legal aspects

Christophe Place*, Antonin Calderon, James Stodder and Isidor Wallimann

* Haute École de Gestion de Genève, Geneva, Switzerland. Email : cp@christopheplace.com

Switzerland has not only the oldest and biggest modern complementary currency in the world, the WIR created in 1934, among 40’000 organizations with a velocity of 1.3 in 2017, representing 0.17% of the Gross Domestic Product at current prices and 0.08% of the global money supply, but also the second cross-border complementary currency in the world and the first local currency using blockchain technology in Switzerland, the Léman, created in September 2015 in a Swiss-French conurbation, with 160’000 units in circulation among a network of 550 organizations and 4’000 users in May 2018. Moreover, with about 49 community currencies and 15 complementary currencies in January 2018 and a cryptocurrency cluster called Crypto Valley funded in January 2017, Switzerland counts among reference case studies in the virtual, community and complementary currency systems domain. Nevertheless, some questions remain: (1) How is the partition of these currencies in term of geographical region, system type and digital software? (2) What the recent Léman case study taught us in term of strategic implementation? (3) Could a Swiss Currency Confederation facilitate their legal conformity? To contribute to these research questions, a literature review, a data analysis, and a research survey will allow us not only to overview the Swiss and the Greater Geneva currency systems, but also evaluate their legal framework evolution.

Article Place et al

To cite this article: Place, Christophe; Calderon, Antonin; Stodder, James and Wallimann, Isidor (2018) ‘Swiss currency systems: atlas, compendium and chronicle of legal aspects’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2018 Volume 22 (Summer) 85-104 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547. DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2018.018

Extending blockchain technology to host customizable and interoperable community currencies

Gustav R.B. Friis and Florian Glaser

* Brainbot Technologies AG, Mainz

** Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Karlsruhe

The goal of this paper is to propose an open platform for secure and interoperable virtual community currencies. We follow the established information systems design-science approach to develop a prototype that aims to combine best practices for building mutual-credit community currencies with the unique features of blockchain technology. The result is a specification of an open Internet platform that enables users to join and to host customized community currencies. The hosted currencies can be classified as credit-based future type of money with decentralized issuance. Furthermore, we describe how the transparency, security and interoperability properties of blockchain technology offer a solution to the inherent problems of existing, centrally operated community currency software. The characteristics of the prototype and its ability to fulfil the design-objectives are examined by a relative evaluation against existing payment and currency systems like Bitcoin, LETS and M-Pesa.

Article Friis Glaser

To cite this article: Friis, G. and Glaser, F. (2018) ‘Extending Blockchain Technology to host Customizable and Interoperable Community Currencies’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2018 Volume 22 (Summer) 71-84 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2018.017

A digital community bank: mapping negotiation mechanisms in its consolidation as an alternative to commercial banks

Eurídice Gomes da Silva Hernandes*, Erica Souza Siqueira**, Eduardo Henrique Diniz**, Marlei Pozzebon***

* EAESP/ Fundação Getúlio Vargas, Brasil. Email: euridicehernandes@gmail.com

** EAESP/ Fundação Getúlio Vargas, Brazil. 

*** HEC Montréal; Canada & EAESP/ Fundação Getúlio Vargas; Brazil

ABSTRACT

This paper aims to map the negotiation mechanisms used by Banco Palmas in order to make Palmas Digital possible as a community digital bank in the Conjunto Palmeiras’ neighbourhood, state of Ceará, Brazil. Palmas Digital represents an alternative way to offer financial services in a network of community banks that was enabled by a digital payment platform called e-Dinheiro. Using a multilevel framework model proposed in Pozzebon & Diniz (2012), we seek to understand the interplay between different actors and technological artefacts in order to understand the “technology-in-practice”, concept defined by Orlikowski (2000). The multilevel framework model was built to understand social consequences of information and communication technologies (ICT) interactions at a community level.

Article Gomes da Silva et al

To cite this article: Gomes da Silva Hernandes, E., E. Souza Siqueira, E. Henrique Diniz, M. Pozzebon (2018) ‘A digital community bank: mapping negotiation mechanisms in its consolidation as an alternative to commercial banks’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2018 Volume 22 (Summer) 56-70 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547. DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2018.016

Forms of money power and measure of economic value. The alternative currencies coping with care of commons

Maurizio Ruzzene

Associazione Decrescita; RetiCS (www.retics.org); Email: ruzzene@gmail.com

ABSTRACT

Among the main causes of the current crisis, there is certainly a lack of adequate criteria to measure economic value, and this is linked to the way official currency value is designed, imbued with intrinsic and anonymous economic value. Official currencies perform their function of economic accounting only because they offer a general equivalent of all value (Marx), i.e. because they have an abstract and internal value, but this prevents them from being effective instruments of economic measure, making them unstable and relatively inexpressive of any concrete value.

Despite its importance in the current systemic crisis, the lack of instruments for measuring economic value has not warranted special attention in prevailing alternative currency schemes. This is partly related to a prevalence of approaches that limit attention to the social integration functions of alternative currencies and/or the exchange functions for reviving economic growth and full employment of resources. However, in order to restore the wider emancipative potential of alternative currencies and better address the current systemic crisis, we have to reconsider the economic measure problems mainly from the viewpoint of the links between human activities and the common conditions of existence, or life contexts, in which the flow of time has a fundamental influence.

Article Ruzzene

To cite this article: Ruzzene, M. (2018) ‘Forms of money power and measure of economic value. Time based credit for care and commons economies’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2018 Volume 22 (Summer) 39-55 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2018.015

The District Currency: a new currency design for managing the commons

Jens Martignoni

University of Cologne, Germany. Email: jens@nethood.org

ABSTRACT

Most schemes of complementary currencies developed in the last 50 years are based on the “money as a means of exchange”- concept, which means exchange of individual agents based on their individual needs and offers. The individual person or the individual company is an actor in a network and by establishing a market it is possible to exchange goods and services. Mutual Credit systems LETS or Timebanks e.g. do support mostly this market case and many of them limit common activities to the sole operation of the system itself. Therefore, community currencies today are often currencies operating within a community but not necessary for the community. Interestingly the case of a commons is mostly not recognized as a completely different kind of exchange where needs of a whole group have to be satisfied through offers of individuals and offers of the whole (commons) have to be shared justly among the individual members. Such an exchange asks for different features from a community currency. This was the starting point of a project in Zurich, Switzerland to develop a more suitable and effective currency. The resulting new currency model, called district currency is proposed and analysed in this paper. The district currency is therefore an advanced currency type, which is designed upon the commons idea. It is the needs and tasks of the community, the public (community) goods and common tasks based on the commons, which are the core and drivers of the currency. As a secondary element the traditional individual market-based system complements this commons layer and strengthen its impact. Therefore, it could be seen as a two tiers model.

The paper describes basics, premises and functions of the idea including some historical background and more specifically the case of Wörgel in Austria which has some interesting aspects have that still not widely taken into consideration.  The main features of the district currency model are including the intended and controllable circulation, the democratic decision of the spending and budgeting and the commons-based value system. The currency was developed along a case study in a housing co-operative in Zurich. Experiences with the planning district-currency-game give some important hints for the feasibility and the functioning of such an improved currency model and the open questions remaining to be answered. The development of this model has been a long-term process driven through empirical research and action and the goal of the paper is to engage more researchers and practitioners to contribute towards the needed theoretical foundation and feasibility studies.

Article Martignoni

To cite this article: Martignoni, Jens (2018) ‘The district currency: a new currency design for managing the commons” International Journal of Community Currency Research 2018 Volume 22 (Summer) 16-38 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547. DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2018.014

IJCCR Publications – a literature review 2009-2016

Filipe Moreira Alves and Rui Ferreira Santos

Center for Environmental and Sustainability Research, NOVA School of Sciences and Technology – NOVA University Lisbon (CENSE – FCT-UNL), Email: fmalves@fc.ul.pt

ABSTRACT

This paper aims at a literature review of all scientific articles published in the International Journal of Community Currencies since 2009 in order to identify research patterns and research gaps in the literature. It complements the work done by Schroeder (2011) and Seyfang (2013), among many others, who have focused on characterizing the literature and practice in this field of research. A universe of 78 articles retrieved from IJCCR website in November 2016 are statistically analysed, taking into consideration their structure, methodology and key conclusions as well as research gaps and future research needed in the field of complementary currencies.

Although a strong heterogeneity can be found in the number of publications per year as well in the sample characterization, both in format and content, our analysis enables clear patterns of the IJCCR in the past eight years to emerge and research gaps to be identified, specifically the need for longer, more in-depth, comparable and methodologically coherent socio-economic impact assessment of CC experiments; more and better knowledge regarding optimal scale and design optimization; deeper recognition and understanding of socio-psychological factors influencing CC implementation and success; sustainable governance options and impacts; and finally, more research done into multiple currency interfaces and exchange mechanisms between complementary currencies. These gaps and research needs are presented and may serve as potential guidelines for future publications within the Journal as well as the establishment of more refined research agenda for IJCCR that serve the evolution of scientific knowledge in this growing field.

Article Alves Santos

To cite this article: Alves, Filipe M. and Santos, Rui F. (2018) ‘IJCCR Publications – a literature review 2010-2016′ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2018 Volume 22 (Summer) 4-15 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2018.013