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Community Currencies and Sustainable Development: A Systematic Review

Listed author(s):
  • Arnaud Michel
  • Marek Hudon
Registered author(s):

    Community or complementary currency systems have spread all around the world. Most often, they have been promoted as tools to foster sustainable development albeit they differ in terms of specific objectives. While many case studies have tried to assess the actual impact of these systems, there has been no global analysis summarizing their global impact.This paper aims to fill the gap by exploring whether complementary currencies contribute to the three pillars of sustainable development. We use the systematic review methodology on an original dataset gathering most academic publications published on the topic in English, French and Spanish. Our main findings suggest that community currencies mostly contribute to social sustainability, and that their economic benefits are somewhat limited due to their small scale and the lack of awareness on their scope. Moreover, very few studies explicitly identified environmental outcomes. Finally, this review reveals some limits regarding current methods for impact assessment in this field. Therefore it encourages more standardisation to provide greater accuracy and strengthen the legitimacy of community currencies’ in order to foster their continued development.

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    Paper provided by ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles in its series Working Papers CEB with number 15-012.

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    Length: 36 p.
    Date of creation: 21 Apr 2015
    Publication status: Published by:
    Handle: RePEc:sol:wpaper:2013/198776
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    12. Ed Collom, 2005. "Community currency in the United States: the social environments in which it emerges and survives," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 37(9), pages 1565-1587, September.
    13. Michael S Evans, 2009. "Zelizer’s theory of money and the case of local currencies," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 41(5), pages 1026-1041, May.
    14. Stodder, James, 2009. "Complementary credit networks and macroeconomic stability: Switzerland's Wirtschaftsring," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 79-95, October.
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    16. Bob Giddings & Bill Hopwood & Geoff O'Brien, 2002. "Environment, economy and society: fitting them together into sustainable development," Sustainable Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 10(4), pages 187-196.
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