What can governments do to address the banking crisis, remedy unemployment, poverty and ecological threats, and create conditions for sustainable abundance?


How can time-tested currency innovations such as mutual credit systems help businesses of all sizes deal with cash flow shortages and monetary instability?


What can communities do to leverage their untapped wealth and connect resources that would otherwise remain unused with needs that would otherwise remain unmet?


What can scientific and academic research tell us about how to design and implement more effective and resilient monetary systems?

Currency Proposals

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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Articles by Bernard Lietaer

What are the main characteristics of modern national currencies?

September 17, 2010 – 5:05 am | One Comment

National currencies

are geographically attached to a nation-state
are chosen by a central authority when it declares that something is the only medium of exchange acceptable in payment of taxes (the only valid “legal tender” for all …

Is a Community Currency Just Another Welfare System?

September 17, 2010 – 4:26 am |

To many people, anything that helps the poor is a welfare system.   While that is indeed the case in most programs, community currencies are an exception.
Let us consider a practical example from a city …

What are the three main effects of interest-based currencies?

September 17, 2010 – 4:00 am |

Until the 16th Century, Western Civilization prohibited the practice of charging interest on money on both moral and legal grounds.   In our modern monetary system, however, money is created by banks through loans issued with …

What are complementary currencies?

September 16, 2010 – 7:43 am | 2 Comments

Complementary currencies are agreements within a community to accept something else than national currencies as a means of payment.  They are sometimes called community currencies, local currencies or “common tender.”   Not all these common tender …

The Story of Curitiba in Brazil

September 8, 2010 – 4:43 pm |

The story of Curitiba in Brazil illustrates how the introduction of a complementary currency was able to help a developing and impoverished city leverage its untapped resources to creatively solve a host of challenges and …

The Story of the 11th Round

September 8, 2010 – 4:41 pm | Comments Off on The Story of the 11th Round

The story of the 11th round illustrates how the introduction of interest in a monetary system forces artificial competition amongst its users beyond what would naturally occur.

Once upon a time, there was a small village …

The Call of Our Times

September 3, 2010 – 1:38 am |

Humanity is now at a critical juncture. As Paul Hawken succinctly put it in his inspiring address to Portland University’s graduate class in May of 2009, “civilization needs a new operating system,” and fast. Many of the socio-economic rules under which we operate were created under a worldview that failed to recognize that the earth is a living system and that every form of life has its unique and valuable place and purpose in sustaining the larger web of life.

L’empreinte de la technique, Ethnotechnologie prospective, Editions de l’Harmattan

August 26, 2010 – 2:08 pm |

Thierry Gaudin et Elie Faroult ont le plaisir de vous annoncer la publication, au sein de la série “Essais et Recherche” de la collection Prospective des éditions L’Harmattan, du colloque de Cerisy “L’empreinte de la …

Our Monetary Blind Spot

July 19, 2010 – 12:36 pm | One Comment

This paper discusses several reasons why we are unable to see the nature and impact of our current monetary system on our behaviors and relationships.
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A Call for Research

July 19, 2010 – 8:13 am |

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.   …