This paper develops a new classification of non-bank currency systems based on a lexical analysis from French-language web data in order to derive an endogenous typology of monetary projects, based on how these currencies are depicted on the internet. The advantage of this method is that it by-passes problematic issues currently found in the literature to uncover a clear classification of non-bank currency systems from exogenous elements. Our textual corpus consists of 320 web pages, corresponding to 1,210 text pages. We first apply a downward hierarchical clustering method to our data, which enables us to endogenously derive five different classes and make distinctions among non-bank currency system and between these and the standard monetary system. Next, we perform a similarity analysis. Our results show that all non-bank currency systems define themselves in relation to the standard monetary system, with the exception of Local Exchange Trading Systems.
Ariane Tichit*, Clément Mathonnat*, Diego Landivar**
To cite this article: Tichit, A., Mathonnat, C., and Landivar, D. (2016) ‘Classifying non-bank currency systems using web data’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 20 (Summer) 24-40 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547. http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2016.002
The Mutual Credit Currency System, this most radical form of endogenous money, was evaluated and compared with Marx’s Commodity-Money-Commodity requirement. A simple simulation of a small community closed loop economy was used to illustrate the functioning of two types of mutual credit currency systems. The first, dubbed MCSG, behaved according to the specifications and recommendations of the mutual credit currency system’s founding fathers, Riegel and Greco. The second, dubbed the Komoko Monetary System, or abbreviated to KMS, was a sub-type of the mutual credit currency system with some additional restrictions and one additional liberty. The main restriction introduced in the KMS was that it almost exclusively supported the exchange of only newly produced goods and services. The liberty introduced is forecast-based credit allocation. It was shown that the MCSG has an inconsistency that could potentially lead to instability. The restrictions applied within the KMS can provide a remedy for this potential flaw, while at the same time rendering the KMS compliant with Marx’s requirement. The monetary control measures applicable in KMS were discussed, which guarantee robustness and stability and make KMS a true complement to the official fractional reserve banking.
This special issue of the International Journal of Community Currency Research (IJCCR) includes 15 papers that their authors presented in their earlier versions at the 2nd International Conference on Complementary and Community Currency Systems, ‘Multiple moneys and development: making payments in diverse economies’. It was held at the International Institute of Social Studies (ISS) of Erasmus University Rotterdam in The Hague between 19th and 23rd June, 2013. It was organised as an event of the Civic Innovation Research Initiative in collaboration with the Qoin Foundation (Amsterdam), the think-tank New Economics Foundation (London), and the Palmas Institute (Brazil and Europe). The event was attended by almost 450 participants from 31 countries, including academics, practitioners, consultants, policy makers and representatives of grassroots organisations. This special issue seeks to reflect that diversity and includes articles on Complementary and Community Currency Systems from most corners of the world. Georgina M. Gómez
To cite this article: Gómez, G. (2015) ‘Introduction: Money and Development’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 19 (Summer) 1-5. <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547 http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2015.001
This paper studies the determinants of the usage of alternative currencies (currencies which exists parallel to the national currency of a country) across countries. We find that monetary stability, financial sector development and a country’s general level of economic development are all positively related to both the likelihood of a country hosting an alternative currency as well to the number of alternative currencies a country is hosting. This suggests that these currencies, in contrast to their historical function, mainly act as a complement to fiat money. We discuss the implications for the role of fiat money in the economy as well as for the welfare effects of alternative currencies.
Damjan Pfajfar, Giovanni Sgro, and Wolf Wagner
To cite this article: Pfajfar, D., Sgro, G. and Wagner, W. (2012) ‘Are Alternative Currencies or a Complement to Fiat Money? Evidence from Cross-Country Data’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 16 (D) 45 – 56 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547 http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2012.004
The aim of the Eco-Pesa programme was to promote and facilitate environmental social service work and economic development in impoverished informal settlements (slums) through the innovative use of a complementary currency. This complementary currency, called Eco-Pesa, was backed by the national currency and introduced through the registration of 75 small local businesses, price discounting, community service work, and community events in three neighbouring informal settlements in Kongowea, Kenya. An estimated $4,176 USD worth of trading was facilitated through the circulation of only $352 USD worth of Eco-Pesa. The use of Eco-Pesa resulted in a 22% average increase in participating businesses’ incomes, the collection of 20 tonnes of waste, and the creation of three youth-led community tree nurseries. The programme was cost effective (only $4,698 USD was spent over seven months), and provided an improved mechanism for tracking development funding and increasing overall accountability. This paper presents a study of the programme, describing seven months of design, implementation and results. The successes of the Eco-Pesa programme demonstrated in these findings, indicate that complementary currencies are a valuable tool to promote development, warranting further implementation and research.
To cite this article: Ruddick, W. (2011) ‘Eco-Pesa: An Evaluation of a Complementary Currency Programme in Kenya’s Informal Settlements’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 15 (A) 1-12 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547 http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2011.001
This article looks at whether or not Community Currency Systems form part of an alternative development agenda when analyzed through the lenses of feminism and associationalism. It begins by differentiating Alternative Development, as a static concept, from alternative development which is only comprehensible in its current context and form. The latter, according to the author, must involve a process of self-empowerment, a deepening of democracy and embody strong sustainability. A case study is provided of Thailand’s first CCS, Bia Kud Chum, and its encounter with state authorities. Using this example, it is shown that CCS and feminism share a recognition of the shortcomings of economic dualism and the desire to re-structure market values. Risks from this vantage point include the creation of new gender-biased institutions and an increase in women’s double burden. The associationalist analysis of CCS highlights the system’s capacity to serve as a vehicle for decentralization and potential in building networks central to economic success. However CCS proponents must be wary of co-optation into a programme which threatens the redistributive role of the state in the South. In the conclusion, it is argued that the Bia Kud Chum system was able to initiate a process of self-empowerment and encourage a deepening of democracy, and should, therefore, be considered part of an alternative development agenda.
To cite this article: Powell, J. (2002) ‘Development at the Conjuncture of Feminism and Associationalism’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 6 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547 http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2002.004
Up until now, the vast majority of research on community currencies has focused upon their development in advanced economies. The aim of this short article, however, is to present some evidence on the growth of community currencies outside these western advanced economies. Reporting on the Global Exchange Network in Argentina, this paper shows how in just five years, this has exploded from a neighbourhood group of 20 people to a national network of 500 groups with over 230,000 participants exchanging skills, knowledge, goods and services. In so doing, it shows how “multi-reciprocal exchange”, facilitated not by Argentine Pesos but an alternative local currency, is growing in popularity not only in ‘northern’ advanced economies but also ‘southern’ nations.
To cite this article: DeMeulenaere, S. (2000) ‘Reinventing the Market: Alternative Currencies and Community Development in Argentina’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 4 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547 http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2000.004
Local Exchange and Trading Systems (LETS) are a form of not-for-profit community enterprise which have rapidly spread throughout the English-speaking industrialised nations during the 1990s. A LETS is a local association whose members list their offers of, and requests for, work in a directory and members then exchange this activity valued in a local unit of currency. However, little is known about them. Drawing upon the results of a questionnaire sent to all Australian LETS in April 1995, this paper evaluates their contributions to community development. Finding that LETS are to some extent rebuilding more localised economies, reconstructing local social networks and helping the unemployed engage in productive activity, recommendations are made about how these achievements could be further improved. However, and on a more cautionary note, questions are raised about not only the effectiveness of, but also the reasons for, the state’s support of LETS in Australia.
To cite this article: Williams, C. (1997) ‘Local Exchange and Trading Systems (LETS) in Australia: a new tool for community development?’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 1 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547 http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.1997.002