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What types of complementary currencies could help us overcome current obstacles to the flourishing of our educational, energy, commercial, and other systems?

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A Call for Research

Submitted by on July 19, 2010 – 8:13 amNo Comment

After more than 30 years of practical experience and 15 years of academic research on currency issues, I am now shifting my focus and activities toward supporting and mentoring the next generation of currency researchers.   I invite Ph.D. students and academic researchers who are interested in exploring and researching this domain to contact me if they would like my support in identifying important and relevant research topics.  Below are a few of the areas that I believe merit special attention and that I would be most interested to support.  I will be updating this page over time, and I welcome fellow practitioners’ suggestions of additional or important research areas. Complementary currency researchers are encouraged to join the CC Research discussion group —

Theoretical Research Topics:

  • Inflation and complementary currencies.  Under what conditions do complementary currencies  negatively or positively affect the management of inflation of national currencies. In other words, how can complementary currencies help or hinder the work of central banks?

Quantitative Research Topics:

  • Socio-economic impact of community currencies.   For instance, the Banco Palmas experiment in Brazil has been running successfully for 10 years. Data should be available, that would make it possible to perform quantitative analysis of the socio-economic effects of complementary currencies.   A Master level work could focus on field work in order to build the database.Some of this data has already been collected, but it needs to be verified, organized and structured in a way that would enable quantative Ph.D level theoretical work about the economic and social effects of a dual currency system on the Palma Community.
  • Measuring the stability and resilience of financial systems.  Data is needed to extrapolate the theoretical model of Robert E. Ulanowicz in the monetary domain from the ecological domain.   That data would measure the quantitative exchanges of money flows in a given currency amongst financial institutions, thereby measuring exactly where that financial system resides on the efficiency vs. resilience curve.
  • Comparative research about the volatility of different types of currencies.    For a number of years, I have been advocating the importance of adopting a global currency that is no one’s national currency. It could best be fully backed by a basket composed of the commodities traded internationally, possibly also adding some international services (e.g.  carbon credits).  My white paper about the Terra provides a detailed overview of the benefits of such a currency.   It would be helpful to have a comparative assessment of the volatility of different compositions of such baskets.   One key issue would be to assess the relative volatility of the Terra basket compared to national currencies, for different types of baskets.
  • Macro-economic modeling of an inflation-proof anticyclical global currency.    We need a macro-economic model of the counter cyclical effects which a currency like the Terra would have on the global economy.