Transition Culture

An Evolving Exploration into the Head, Heart and Hands of Energy Descent

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11 Nov 2008

A Call for Input for the Transition Guide to Money

(A message from Peter North at Liverpool University)… Green Books in the UK will be publishing a guide to alternative currencies as part of their “Transition Guides” series called: “Money: how to unleash a money revolution where you live”.  I am writing it, and it will be published in September next year. It won’t be an inaccessible academic tome, but an affordable accessible ‘how to’ guide.  I have to deliver the manuscript in February.
This is an open call for you to get in touch with me if you think you have a good story about setting up an alternative currency scheme of any kind (LETS, LETSystem, Time Money, Time Dollar, Hours, scrip, Totnes or Lewes Pound, regional money etc) that you feel those interested in setting up currencies, perhaps as part of their transitioning to deal with climate change and peak oil.

I am interested in good examples of:

  • setting up currency schemes in different examples.
  • designing systems that do work (ie, you have a track record of success, NOT “it would work if only you did xxx”  Tell me when you did xxx and why it worked.)
  • managing circulation – avoiding overlarge hoards or debts, managing people leaving without paying off debts, credit limits, deciding how much scrip to print)
  • involving hard to reach communities, and businesses.
  • working with local authorities.
  • publicity and promotion
  • explaining to new people how it works.

I am relatively familiar with things in the UK, New Zealand, Hungary and Argentina, and quite up to date with the States and Canada – it would be good to hear about things elsewhere.  We have a good track record in overselling what complementary currencies can do, and not talking about what does not work.  So I want the experiences to be grounded and verified, not just peoples hopes and pet theories about what could happen – but also optimistic.

Experience is that when financial systems crash we see an effervescence of alternative currency networks.  We now have a lot of experience about what works and how to avoid the pitfalls.  This is a chance to distil that experience.  Of course, anyone who gets in touch with me and we use their stuff will be credited.

I look forward to your experiences.

Peter North (P.J.North (at)
Department of Geography
University of Liverpool

Categories: Economics, General

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Marion Turner
11 Nov 7:03pm

Dear Peter – this is weird – we were talking about the need for this, or something like this recently. I have one suggestion and its not specific to the items you mentioned above – so if its of help far enough. We were discussing about the emotional ‘tie – in’ that all of us have to money – and if, if we are ever truely to get past our ‘hang ups’ with ‘money’ & the present heirarical valuing or assessing of people – we need to create/ dream into being – new ‘value systems upon which a new money system may be based.

Also – what concerns me we are so tied in to the present system an enourmous amount of ‘healing’ would need to occur for many of us in order to be trully able to move away for our ‘old systems’ of valuing actions, roles & people. For if we dont look at these points – we just create the existing system by another name – and why do that – eben if it is more locally operational – the injustice of the old system travels on.

I guess you’ve probably thought of this already – I mention it because for news sytems to really be effective they also need to value all beings & action in an equitable fashion & recognise the enourmous ‘heart’ journey there may be for each of us to ‘get there’.

Best wishes with your wonderfully timed book

Marion Turner

Jane Buttigieg
12 Nov 9:09am

Anyone interested in alternative methods of exchanging goods and services in a post peak world should have a look at this site:
It would be great if they could contribute something to this book. I’ll let them know about it, as to have freeconomy ideas in the book would be really interesting for everyone thinking about these issues.

Pete North
12 Nov 2:10pm

Thanks Marion and Jane – all good stuff. The hearts and minds of money and exchange is really important, as is when to use new forms of money and when just to share without counting. Its an issue of reciprocity, really.

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