New article on theoretical typology of CCS

Volume 24, 1 – Winter (2020), pp. 45-60

A Conceptual framework for classifying currencies

Louis Larue UCLouvain, Belgium,; Place Montesquieu 3, 1348 Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium


An impressive variety of new forms of money has aroused in recent decades from various groups of people and various kinds of institutions. These currencies are at the heart of intense debates, which raise important, but often neglected, normative issues. The diversity of their goals, uses and characteristics is so large that it makes some preliminary distinctions necessary. This paper aims at providing a proper background for the discussion of the possible merits and drawbacks of different kinds of currencies. It proposes a classification that demarcates currencies according to how they relate to several crucial normative issues. Its aim is to show, for every type of currency, and as unambiguously as possible, to which side of these controversies it lies.


Money, alternative currencies, typologies, classification. Article Larue To cite this article: Larue, L (2020) ‘A conceptual framework for classifying currencies’ International Journal of Community Currency Research Volume 24 (Winter 2020) 45-60;; ISSN 1325-9547; DOI

New article on conceptualising money

Volume 24, 1 – Winter (2020), pp. 30-44

Image, value and belief: assessing money through Simondon

Diego Viana FFLCH-USP, Rua Girassol, 554, 183, São Paulo-SP Brasil,


Regarding money, the theme of belief is usually formulated in terms of belief in money. The same is true of trust, as well the value of money. One should also raise the question of trust, belief and value through money, or given its presence. This suggestion is inspired by the philosophy of Gilbert Simondon, whose theory of psychic and collective individuation aims at overcoming the dichotomy between methodological individualism and a sociology of vast categories. Simondon’s theory has three aspects that could inform the research on money. Firstly, the philosopher raises the question of how groups are constituted: they subsist by the same process that gives birth to individual personalities. A group is defined by the categories it mobilizes, and most importantly, that it produces while constituting itself. Secondly, Simondon underscores the inventive aspect of this emergence of groups, an invention analogous to technical invention, one that redraws the potentials at work in the collective: it can be those of the territory, of the bodies, or of the minds. This inventive character prolongs these potentials as structures, and this is what the collective is all about. Finally, Simondon develops a theory of the “image cycle” that can help us understand the continuity between this indefinite and infinite field of potentials, the typical categorization of groups, and the formation of images and objects (technical, sacred, aesthetic), which crystalize desires, beliefs and hopes of individuals as members of groups. These aspects clarify our wish to alter the way the questions regarding money are enounced, as well as that of the affects it mobilizes and informs. Since money manifests itself in its operation, as image or object, it can be considered to stem from the simondonian image cycle, giving sense to groups and mobilizing potentials, desires and beliefs. We explore and explicit the differences implied by this approach, underscoring Simondon’s contributions to social thought. Money is a privileged object for the application of Simondon’s thought, because of its plasticity, the vastness of the domains in which it operates, and the magnitude of forces it mobilizes.


Image, group, belief, value, Simondon, interpretation Article Viana To cite this article: Viana, D.  (2020) ‘Image, value and belief: Assessing money through Simondon’ International Journal of Community Currency Research Volume 24 (Winter 2020) 30-44;; ISSN 1325-9547; DOI

New article on CCS in France

Volume 24, 1 – Winter (2020), pp. 11-29

Toward spatial analyses of local currencies: the case of France

Jérôme Blanc * and Csaba Lakócai **

* University of Lyon, Sciences Po Lyon, UMR Triangle, Lyon (France). Email:

** University of Pécs, Doctoral School of Regional Policy and Economics (Hungary); Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Institute of Regional Studies. Email:;


This paper suggests that studies on local currencies (LCs) should engage in spatial analyses, as far as their territorial distribution is highly heterogeneous. It provides a statistical overview of the territorial features of LCs functioning in France, wherein their number has increased solidly and remarkably fast over the last decade. However, there is a huge variety in their extent, and their development has not been spatially even, especially with regards to the administrative subdivision of the country in departments (counties or departments that correspond to the NUTS-3 level of regions according to the administrative territorial classification of the EU). This uneven distribution let us presume that it is interrelated with different territorial conditions, which motivated our research. We build a size index of LCs and provide a cluster presentation of them as of 2018. A departmental territorial breakdown of data shows statistically significant spatial concentrations of LCs in France. We then provide insights into the reasons for such concentrations.


Local currencies, France, territorial distribution, spatial statistics, size index.

Article Blanc Lakocai

To cite this article: Blanc, J. and Lakócai, C. (2020) ‘Toward spatial analyses of local currencies: The case of France’ International Journal of Community Currency Research Volume 24 (Winter 2020) 11-29;; ISSN 1325-9547; DOI

New article on CC in Japan

Volume 24, 1 – Winter (2020), pp. 1-10

Historical transition of community currencies in Japan

Shigeto Kobayashi*, Yoshihisa Miyazaki** and Masayuki Yoshida***

* Sapporo City University, Japan. Email:

** National Institute of Technology, Sendai College, Japan. Email:

*** Joetsu University of Education, Japan. Email:


This study investigates the historical transition of diversifying community currencies (CCs) in Japan. We searched for papers, reports, newspaper articles, and websites about Japanese CCs to acquire all available information on CCs issued in Japan. We classify the types of CCs by purpose and examine their development process by organizing the purposes, issuing forms, and starting year for each CC.

Our survey results show that 792 CCs were issued in Japan. The largest number of CCs was 130 issued in 2002. New CCs have gradually decreased since 2002, and approximately 15-20 CCs were issued annually since 2008. The purpose of issuing CCs also changed; CCs aiming to “create connections among people” were the most frequent, though this changed in 2002 to “revitalizing the regional economy.” The number of issued CCs to “create connections among people” was in third place in 2011, while “promoting resource recycling” was second.

To classify CCs in Japan, we conduct a cluster analysis using sample scores obtained by Hayashi’s quantification method type III as a dependent variable for the issuing purpose. Many CCs issued in the first half of 2000 belonged to Cluster 4, “formation of people’s connection and regional economic revitalization;” however, those issued in recent years belonged to Cluster 3, “forestry and regional economic revitalization.” Although the number of new CCs decreased drastically in the past 15 years, CCs are clearly evolving as a tool for solving social problems with changing issuing purposes.


Classification, cluster analysis, issuing purposes, issuing forms, Japanese CCs.

Article Kobayashi et al.

To cite this article: Kobayashi, S, Miyazaki, Y and Yoshida, M (2020) ‘Historical transition of community currencies in Japan’ International Journal of Community Currency Research Volume 24 (Winter 2020) 1-10;; ISSN 1325-9547; DOI

Social representations of money: contrast between citizens and local complementary currency members

Ariane Tichit

CERDI, University of Clermont Auvergne; France;


This article analyses the social representations of money from survey data. More specifically, it tests how organizers of a complementary currency system have a distinct perception of money compared to other citizens. The main results confirm the existence of significant differences between the two groups. The structure of their representations shows that for the local currency members money is less tied to official institutions, to the symbol of the sovereign State, to labour and to wages than for the representative population segment. This confirms a number of theoretical studies that see these social innovations as forms of protest against the standard system, questioning the sovereign State currency and close to the concept of unconditional income. Local currencies, through the different social representations of money they contain, could well be drivers of societal change.


Social representations of money, Survey data, Abric method.

Article Tichit, A.

To cite this article: Tichit, A. (2019) ‘Social representations of money: contrast between citizens and local complementary currency members’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 23 Issue 2 (Summer 2019) 45-62;; ISSN 1325-9547; DOI

A new type of money for a Mayan community to build resilience in a context of economic crisis

Ranulfo Paiva Sobrinho1, Claudia Maricusa Agraz Hernández2, Karla Vanessa Córdoba Brenes3, Juan Osti Sáenz2, Ademar Ribeiro Romeiro4

1Researcher at the Institute of Economics in the Campinas State University. Cidade Universitária “Zeferino Vaz” Barão Geraldo – Campinas, São Paulo, Brasil. CEP: 13083-970. Telefonista – PABX: 55 19 3521-2121. Co-founder of Sustainability.School

2Instituto EPOMEX, Universidad Autónoma de Campeche, Av. Agustín Melgar s/n entre Juan de la Barrera y Calle 20, Col. Buenavista, A.P. 24039 San Francisco de Campeche, Campeche, México. Teléfono (52) 981 8119800 ext. 62309. Fax ext. 62399.

3Co-founder of Sustainability.School.

4Researcher at the Institute of Economics in the Campinas State University. Cidade Universitária “Zeferino Vaz” Barão Geraldo – Campinas, São Paulo, Brasil. CEP: 13083-970. Telefonista – PABX: 55 19 3521-2121.


We present the proposal of a complementary currency, the Sodziles, to strength the local economy and social ties among the members of the Mayan community of Sodzil (Campeche, Mexico) that work in a mangrove restoration project. This project is important both for the conservation of mangroves and for the social and economic dynamics of Sodzil community. The Sodziles are backed by the restored mangrove ecosystem. We describe key local environmental, social and economic aspects, as well as the macroeconomic context within which the project is developing, specifically, the credit expansion and level of indebtedness in the various sectors of the country, and especially in Campeche State, where the restoration project is in process. From there, it was possible to identify that Mexico is close to a strong economic recession due to the high level of indebtedness of the sectors of its economy. The occurrence of this crisis may affect government funds to finance the restoration project, as well as economic activities such as construction works on which some of the Mayan descendants depend. There is no crisis yet, but it is important to consider the Sodziles as an option in case this crisis happens and also to ensure that the recovered mangroves are protected.

Article Ranulfo et al.pdf

To cite this article: Ranulfo Paiva Sobrinho et al. (2017) ‘A new type of money for a Mayan community to build resilience in a context of economic crisis’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2017 Volume 21 (Summer) 85-97 <> ISSN 1325-9547. DOI

Let’s change: a critical study of the aims and practices of a local exchange trading scheme

Arianna Bove

School of Business and Management, Queen Mary University of London Francis Bancroft Building, Room 3.44a. Mile End Road, E1 4NS London, United Kingdom. Phone: +44 (0)20 7882 8412 Email:


The paper presents the findings of ethnographic research and a survey of a Local Exchange Trading Scheme in North-East London and asks the question of whether the scheme delivers on the aims and objectives of its members. The research found that whilst its members express a strong politically motivated desire for an alternative to the prevailing economic system, the LETS scheme falls short of delivering on those ambitions. The findings raise the question of whether there is anything intrinsic to this form of local community currency that leads it to be more inclusive, egalitarian and fair.

Article Bove.pdf

To cite this article: Arianna Bove (2017) ‘Let’s change: a critical study of the aims and practices of a local exchange trading scheme’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2017 Volume 21 (Summer) 65-83 <> ISSN 1325-9547. DOI

Which characteristics of communities boost time-banking? A case study of the United States

Katerina Gawthorpe

University of Economics, Prague, W. Churchill Sq. 4, 130 67 Prague 3, Czech Republic, Email:

This paper empirically examines the characteristics of communities with successful time banking schemes. Dataset for this study consists of 909 counties in the U.S, 314 of these counties employ a time-banking currency. The selected factors in this study are captured by 13 variables that affect the number of exchanged hours, namely income inequality, social security, unemployment rate, a set of poverty and income variables and various industry composition indicators. This paper aims to statistically model which specific characteristics of local communities significantly impact the number of hours exchanged. The research especially focuses on the factors of inequality and poverty. The hypothesis tests the assumption that an increase in hours exchanged corresponds to higher income inequality, higher unemployment density, and social-security benefits to constituents. The outcome of the model partially contradicts this hypothesis. The findings indicate a higher portion of impoverished, low-income families as well as an increase in the income inequality variable to negatively affect the number of hours exchanged. Oppositely, in line with previous literature, the result of the model supports joblessness and social security as positive indicators and reveals retail-trade as a significant factor for the successful operation of a time bank. More thorough examination of such findings discloses reasons behind such patterns. A suitable policy is proposed in the end of this paper.

Article Gawthorpe

To cite this article: Katerina Gawthorpe (2017) ‘Which characteristics of communities boost time-banking? Case study of the United States’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2017 Volume 21 (Summer) 51-64 <> ISSN 1325-9547. DOI

Sharing is caring: Mediterranean time banking in a multidimensional crisis scenario

Lucía del Moral-Espín

Universidad Pablo Olavide, Seville (Spain)

Time banks (TB) have spread all over Europe as part of a wider expansion of alternative economic spaces. Much of the existing literature has focused on UK and US time banking models, while TBs in other regions have been overlooked. This article contributes to a feminist understanding of time banking in a crisis context and, specifically, analyses possible particularities of Mediterranean TBs on the basis of case studies from Emilia Romagna (Italy) and Andalucia (Spain). The article describes the methodology and introduces the perspectives of Feminist economics before outlining the origins and development of time banking initiatives in both countries. The second section explores the history and characteristics of the selected TBs, presenting details of their objectives, member motivations and exchanges. The discussion analyses the contributions of Feminist economics to the understanding of time banking, and the conclusion provides a summary of the most important ideas.

Article del Moral.pdf

To cite this article: Lucía del Moral-Espín (2017) ‘Sharing is Caring: Mediterranean Time Banking in a Multidimensional Crisis Scenario’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 2017 Volume 21 (Summer) 33-50 <> ISSN 1325-9547. DOI

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,

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 <> ISSN 1325-9547. DOI