query: local currencies

colist-admin at comm-org.utoledo.edu colist-admin at comm-org.utoledo.edu
Wed Dec 25 22:47:08 CST 2002

[ed:  thanks to Richard for the quick reply to James' query, 
reprinted below.]

From: "Richard Schultz" <rschultz at gis.net>

A lot of people share this interest in the potential of Local 
Currencies to increase local control over economic development.  
In addition to LETS, there are Time Dollars, Ithaca Hours, and 
many other models. Internationally, there are hundreds (perhaps 
thousands) of local currency programs; it's much bigger than a 
"white middle class thing".  Some internet links of interest are:  

A variety of relevant links are at 
<http://www.greenmac.com/hours/*links.html>; also, 

The E. F. Schumacher Society has information at < 

The Time Dollar Institute web page is 

You can reach the New Economics Foundation in England at 
http://www.neweconomics.org/.  They use the term Time Banks, 
rather than Time Dollars.  

For information and links to various LETS programs: 

One of the best books on community currencies is: Bernard Lietaer 
(2001) "The Future of Money: creating new wealth, work and a 
wiser world", Century, London, 371pp; ISBN 0-7126-8399-2.  His 
web site is at http://www.transaction.net/  

There is an on-line journal: International Journal of Community 
Currency Research.  Also, there are dozens of e-mail groups.  

Hope this is helpful. Richard Schultz  

> .
> [ed:  We have had occasional discussions about community-based 
> currencies.  James offers us the opportunity to update the 
> discussion.]
> From:  James DeFilippis <jdefilippis at CSSNY.ORG>
> I have recently become interested in LETS, but haven't seen any 
> good data on who is involved and I have this nagging suspician 
> that it's a middle class white person thing (which would make me 
> less interested in it).  Does anyone have any information on this?  
> LETS are local currencies that are forms of self-contained networks 
> in which members buy or sell services to other members and are 
> paid in the LETS currency.  In most LETS every member has an 
> individual account, which records their debt or credit.  Members do 
> not "owe" the person or business providing the service, instead 
> their debt is to the LETS system, and their debt is therefore 
> socialized.   
> My interest in LETS comes from my long term interest in issues of 
> community control over economic development (especially since 
> most of the community development movement/industry seems to 
> have moved very decidedly away from even the goal of community 
> control over the last couple of decades).  And a local currency 
> seems like a very interesting and innovative way to realize local 
> control over economics.  Any thoughts/ideas/data on this would be 
> helpful.  
> James DeFilippis
> Housing Policy Analyst
> Community Service Society of New York
> 105 East 22nd Street
> New York, NY 10010
> 1-212-614-5435
> jdefilippis at cssny.org
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