Report on the BALLE Pre-Conference, Vermont, June 8

On Thursday, June 8, there was a conference, Complementary Currencies: Money for Local Living Economies organized by the E. F. Schumacher Society and held on the campus of Champlain College in Burlington, Vermont. Details can be found at

Besides the keynote address by Bernard Lietaer, there were presentations by Krista Vardebash, Susan Witt, Annette Riggs, Paul Glover, Eric Harris-Braun, Arthur Brock, Julian Darley, and others. I gave a presentation on the state of the complementary currency movement. That presentation was recorded and I will try to get a copy of the audio record at some point to post on this blog. The power point slide show is available now on my reinventingmoney webiste.

This conference was preceded by three days of meetings of the Open Collective 2006 for the local currency community, of which I was able to attend only the final day. My input to that process included a report on the Swiss WIR Bank and discussion of their current practices and recent developments based on Philip Beard’s translation of the 1998 book by Tobias Studer and my conversation with Prof. Studer during my 2005 visit to Basel. I also helped to guide the exposition of the CES online trading network, for which originator Tim Jenkin gave a guided tour at long distance from South Africa via Skype. This was a remarkable use of this available web tool (Skype) to overcome half a world of distance to provide a presentation that worked as well as if Tim had been present right there in the room with us.

One of the attendees at both events was Phillip Dimitrov, a young project manager who is working with Daniel Evans of the XO barter software company in New Zealand. Phillip gave a presentation that described the XO software and its capabilities. It seems to be a very well designed and full featured program for managing credit clearing exchanges. XO is a proprietary product but it is being offered free of charge to non-profit organizations.

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