Local Currency

30 Jun 2015

Currencies for Disaster Assistance and Economic Development

in Currencies, Currency Design, Flows, Local Currency, Targeted Currencies

As a part of my recent commitment to share past designs that might be valuable to other people, I'm posting this incomplete document from 2007. It was something I started writing for a group that was talking with Michael Brown after he left FEMA about other tools for rebuilding New Orleans. Some sections of the document were to be contributed by other members of the team and unfortunately never got written, which is too bad because there were some good conversations that went into scheming them. None of these plans were ever implemented.

However, some are good examples (specifically Purgatory Parades) of how to do well-targeted currency design to activate local energy and resources to (re)build community and (re)build an economy after a disaster. Some of the ideas contained here have also been adapted for use in proposals for International Development and would likely have a more beneficial impact than many other development scenarios which further impoverish communiities and increase dependency on external funding and resources.

For local economic development, I'd recommend looking at Bangla-Pesa as an example, which was co-incidentally started by Will Ruddick who was involved with the group that I wrote this document for.

The document follows below.

Leveraging Local Currencies for Disaster Assistance



Each of the programs proposed in this section take a tack which is distinct from typical disaster assistance.  They rest on the principle that in every functioning community, most people are getting their needs met by other resources in the community.


Flow Pattern of a Healthy Economy (Resources and Needs connected via good flows of employment and spending)

Pages 128-130 in Rethinking Money outline the Capital Programs that we've been deploying at the Mile High Business Alliance.