Saturday, September 21, 2013

Local Money [Book Review]


North, Peter (2010) Local Money: How to Make It Happen in Your Community. Transition Books: Devon, UK.

While this book frequently references the Transitions movement (which may not be your framing) and the UK (which can be problematic when he'€™s talking about tax policy), it's a good primer on alternative currencies. It starts with a history and concepts. Then it provides case examples from around the world, including what worked and didn't. The following summary will give you a sense of the topics covered by the book and their appropriate use:

"We can see a LETS scheme or time bank being used for local production and exchange of things we can produce at home or in a local community—helping each other out; sharing food grown on allotments; renovating each other's houses. More complex goods would be produced by local businesses, perhaps using a local or regional scrip or at a national level, a WIR-like scheme or a business-to business exchange. More local production could be developed using local currency loans, or through a local bank or financial vehicle. Special-purpose currencies could finance local food production and Community Supported Agriculture, and local power generation. Local bonds could finance a major renovation of our housing stock and a new green infrastructure to replace our out-of-date Victorian inheritance." P 219

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