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Growing green money? Mapping community currencies for sustainable development

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  • Seyfang, Gill
  • Longhurst, Noel

Abstract

Parallel sustainable monetary systems are being developed by civil society groups and non-governmental organisations (NGOs), informed by ecological economics perspectives on development, value, economic scale and growth, and responding to the unsustainability of current global financial systems. These parallel systems of exchange (or community currencies) are designed to promote sustainable development by localising economic development, building social capital and substituting for material consumption, valuing work which is marginalised in conventional labour markets, and challenging the growth-based monetary system. However, this international movement towards community-based ecological economic practices, is under-researched. This paper presents new empirical evidence from the first international study of the scope and character of community currencies. It identifies the diversity, scale, geography and development trajectory of these initiatives, discusses the implications of these findings for efforts to achieve sustainable development, and identifies future research needs, to help harness the sustainability potential of these initiatives.

Suggested Citation

  • Seyfang, Gill & Longhurst, Noel, 2013. "Growing green money? Mapping community currencies for sustainable development," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 86(C), pages 65-77.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolec:v:86:y:2013:i:c:p:65-77
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2012.11.003
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Gill Seyfang, 2003. "Growing cohesive communities one favour at a time: social exclusion, active citizenship and time banks," International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 27(3), pages 699-706, September.
    2. Martínez-Alier, Joan & Pascual, Unai & Vivien, Franck-Dominique & Zaccai, Edwin, 2010. "Sustainable de-growth: Mapping the context, criticisms and future prospects of an emergent paradigm," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(9), pages 1741-1747, July.
    3. Michael S Evans, 2009. "Zelizer's Theory of Money and the Case of Local Currencies," Environment and Planning A, , vol. 41(5), pages 1026-1041, May.
    4. Gill Seyfang, 2001. "Working for the Fenland Dollar: An Evaluation of Local Exchange Trading Schemes as an Informal Employment Strategy to Tackle Social Exclusion," Work, Employment & Society, British Sociological Association, vol. 15(3), pages 581-593, September.
    5. Gill Seyfang, 2001. "Community Currencies: Small Change for a Green Economy," Environment and Planning A, , vol. 33(6), pages 975-996, June.
    6. Jérôme Blanc, 2011. "Classifying "CCs": Community, complementary and local currencies' types and generations," Post-Print halshs-00583587, HAL.
    7. Victor, Peter A. & Rosenbluth, Gideon, 2007. "Managing without growth," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(2-3), pages 492-504, March.
    8. Sanne, Christer, 2002. "Willing consumers--or locked-in? Policies for a sustainable consumption," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1-2), pages 273-287, August.
    9. Lee Gregory, 2009. "Spending Time Locally: The Benefit of Time Banks for Local Economies," Local Economy, London South Bank University, vol. 24(4), pages 323-333, June.
    10. Jérôme Blanc, 2010. "Community and complementary currencies," Post-Print halshs-00583590, HAL.
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