New Books 2018

1. Monetary Plurality in Local, Regional and Global Economies

by Georgina M. Gómez (ed.) (International Institute of Social Studies – Erasmus University)

Description. The idea that each country should have one currency is so deeply rooted in people’s minds that the possibility of multiple and concurrent currencies seems unthinkable. Monetary systems contribute to problems of high unemployment and social distress during financial and economic crisis, so reforms to increase the responsiveness and flexibility of the monetary system can be part of the solution.
This book discusses ‘monetary plurality’, which is the circulation of several currencies at the same time and space. It addresses how multiple currency circuits work together and transform socio-economic systems, particularly by supporting economies at the local level of regions and cities. The book shows that monetary plurality has been ubiquitous throughout history and persists at present because the existence of several currency circuits facilitates small-scale production and trade in a way that no single currency can accomplish on its own.
Monetary plurality can improve resilience, access to livelihoods and economic sustainability. At the same time, it introduces new risks in terms of economic governance, so it needs to be properly understood. The book analyses experiences of monetary plurality in Europe, Japan, and North and South America, written by researchers from East and West and from the global North and South. Replete with case studies, this book will prove a valuable addition to any student or practitioner’s bookshelf.
1. The monetary system as an evolutionary construct – Georgina M. Gómez;
2. Monetary Plurality in Economic Theory – Jérôme Blanc, Ludovic Desmedt, Laurent Le Maux, Jaime Marques-Pereira, Pepita Ould-Ahmed and Bruno Théret;
3. Making sense of the plurality of money: a Polanyian attempt – Jérôme Blanc;
4. How does monetary plurality work at the household level? The division of labour among currencies in Argentina (1998-2005) – Georgina M. Gómez;
5. Monetary federalism as A concept and its Empirical underpinnings in Argentina’s monetary history – Bruno Théret;
6. Famine of Cash: Why Have Local Monies Remained Popular throughout Human History? Akinobu Kuroda;
7. The pervasiveness of monetary plurality in economic crisis and wars – Georgina M. Gómez and Wilko von Prittwitz und Gaffron;
8. Birth, Life and Death of a Provincial Complementary Currency from Tucuman, Argentina (1985 – 2003) – Bruno Théret;
9. Community Currency and Sustainable Development in Hilly and Mountainous Areas: A Case Study of Forest Volunteer Activities in Japan – Yoshihisa Miyazaki and Ken-ichi Kurita;
10. Sustainable Territorial Development and Monetary Subsidiarity – Marie Fare;
11. Relationship between people’s money consciousness and circulation of community currency –  Shigeto Kobayashi, Takashi Hashimoto, Ken-ichi Kurita and Makoto Nishibe;
12. Gaming Simulation using Electronic Community Currencies: Behavioural Analysis of Self-versus-Community Consciousness – Masahiro Mikami and Makoto Nishibe;
13. For the policy maker: when and how is monetary plurality an option – Georgina M. Gómez.


2. Das Geld neu erfinden: Alternative Währungen verstehen und nutzen, Versus: Zürich

by Jens Martignoni

The author provides with this book a very good introduction to the topic of „alternative currencies“ for the general public.

Description. Die Finanzkrise hat deutlich gemacht, dass Geldsystem und Währung entscheidenden Einfluss auf das Funktionieren unserer Wirtschaft nehmen – und dieses auch empfindlich stören können. Entsprechend ist das Vertrauen in das bestehende Finanzsystem stark erschüttert. Gibt es nicht ganz andere Geld- und Währungsmodelle? Solche, die wieder ein festes Fundament für eine nachhaltige und zukunftsfähige Wirtschaft bilden könnten?
Jens Martignoni gibt in einfacher und knapper Form einen Überblick über die aktuelle Diskussion zum Thema alternative Währungen und stellt die erfolgreichsten Beispiele vor. Dabei spannt er den Bogen von Quartier- und Lokalwährungen über Gutscheinsysteme bis hin zu neuesten Entwicklungen der Fintech.
Das Buch vermittelt Leserinnen und Lesern das Wissen, um sich zu orientieren, mitzureden und auch mitzutun, indem sie selbst solche Währungen nutzen oder sich an neuen Konzepten.



3. Les monnaies alternatives
by Jérôme Blanc (Triangle, Sciences Po Lyon, France)

Description. Les monnaies alternatives sont des dispositifs monétaires mis au service d’une transformation socioéconomique. Depuis le début des années 1980, elles se sont multipliées et se sont diversifiées dans un grand nombre de pays, selon une ampleur inédite à l’échelle des sociétés industrielles. C’est un bilan analytique de cette dynamique que propose cet ouvrage.
Dans ce but, il établit une typologie des monnaies alternatives en sept groupes, des SEL aux cryptomonnaies en passant par les banques de temps et les monnaies locales. Après avoir précisé les finalités et les cadres théoriques et doctrinaux de ces monnaies, il distingue des monnaies par lesquelles est recherchée en priorité une transformation sociale et d’autres par lesquelles c’est l’orientation du système économique qui est d’abord visée. Il analyse la place respective de l’échange marchand et de la réciprocité selon les dispositifs. Il évalue enfin leurs réussites et leurs difficultés, en soulignant les deux enjeux importants que sont leur contribution à une radicalisation démocratique et l’hypermonétarisation qu’elles favorisent.



4. Time Bank as a Complementary Economic System: Emerging Research and Opportunities
by Lukas Valek (University of Hradec Kralove, Czech Republic) and Vladimir Bures (University of Hradec Kralove, Czech Republic)

Description. Contemporary research in the field of time-based currency has generally been unstructured and takes a retrospective point of view. In practice, approaches to this field commonly taken until now have shown that there can be as many points of view as there are researchers. Time Bank as a Complementary Economic System: Emerging Research and Opportunities provides a systemic study of a soft system called the Time Bank, a reciprocal service exchange that uses units of time as currency. This publication explores the contemporary context of Time Bank and describes the most recent research methodologies and results. Its content represents the work of business exchange, knowledge management, and soft systems, and it is designed for economists, managers, business professionals, social scientists, academicians, and researchers seeking coverage on topics centered on soft systems and their economic influence.