Educational Services

Pay my expenses and toss in a thousand dollars, quid, euros, or equivalent in your home country’s currency, and I’ll come and give a presentation, conduct a workshop, or even run a graduate level course on how to revolutionize the exchange process (the primary function of money) and at the same time save the planet, democratic government, and any hope for peace and universal prosperity. Contact me at thgreco@mindspring.com.

The following descriptions are examples and not an exhaustive list of possible topics or formats.

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Course: Principles of Exchange Innovation

This course is designed especially for social entrepreneurs and enthusiastic agents of change who are ready to co-create a new sustainable and convivial economy, and for serious students of currency and exchange. It is participatory, collaborative, and problem-centered and is intended to:

  1. Provide course fellows with the necessary conceptual foundation required for the design and implementation of effective and sustainable mechanisms for the exchange of economic value.
  2. Dispel fallacious myths about money and banking.
  3. Provide course fellows with a thorough understanding of sound principles of money, credit and circulation.
  4. Involve course fellows in a survey of current and historical examples of private and complementary currencies and other methods of providing liquidity and the monetization of value.
  5. Involve course fellows in the creation of a knowledge base and other resources that can be of ongoing value to other researchers, students, and social entrepreneurs.

See the course description and syllabus here.

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Workshop Abstract

The Exchange Revolution: A workshop for complementary currency and exchange start-ups.

I prefer to do workshops of at least 5 days duration but can also do intensives of one or two days for activists, business people, serious students and practitioners who have some knowledge of basic concepts and seek sufficient understanding to run a successful currency project or credit clearing exchange.

When I lead a workshop I try to make it as beneficial as possible to everyone involved. I tailor it to the participants’ level of preparation, their level of familiarity with my work, and their receptivity to the kinds of approaches I have been proposing. Knowing those things helps me to decide whether to put the emphasis on the conceptual foundation or on the technical details of systems design and implementation. I also like to use a participatory format, so people in the workshop should not expect to be passive listeners but need to be actively involved in the process of inquiry, discovery, sharing and collaboration.

Prerequisites

Participants are expected to have viewed at least one of my live or recorded presentations and read my paper, Taking Moneyless Exchange to Scale: Measuring and Maintaining the Health of a Credit Clearing System, at http://ijccr.files.wordpress.com/2013/04/ijccr-2013-greco.pdf.

I recommend the presentation I gave in 2012 at the Public Banking Institute conference in Philadelphia. View the movie at https://vimeo.com/100765695 or download the Power Point show at https://beyondmoney.files.wordpress.com/2014/07/2012-pbi-videoshow.ppsx.

Additional familiarity with my books and websites is strongly recommended, especially my book, The End of Money and the Future of Civilization. See http://tinyurl.com/pqzyx5v and https://beyondmoney.net/.

Prolog

Banks are supposed to provide liquidity (means of payment) to productive enterprises to enable local economies to function, but banks no longer do much to provide essential credit to local small and medium-sized businesses, and when they do, the terms are onerous, requiring collateral, burdensome repayment schedules, and high rates of interest.

It is becoming ever more urgent that communities and businesses find ways to create alternative sources of liquidity that are more reliable, effective, robust, scalable, and locally controlled. Over the past three decades, a great many local complementary currencies and exchange schemes have sprung up, gained some degree of acceptance and notoriety, then faded away. A few have achieved modest success and have been able to persist, but virtually none of them has become a significant factor in the economic lives of their communities. My analysis of that situation has revealed a number of reasons for that and led me to the creation of a syllabus that has proven useful to both theoreticians and practitioners as they seek to design and implement exchange alternatives having these desired characteristics.

Description

This workshop will:

Describe the reasons why community currencies often stagnate and fail to thrive.

Provide an analysis and critique of the various types of complementary currencies, their basis of issue, effectiveness, viability, and potential scalability.

Highlight and discuss fundamental concepts and principles of exchange, including: liquidity,monetization, basis of issue, redemption,circulation and credit allocation.

Highlight and discuss the areas that need to be addressed in creating and operating exchange alternatives, including:

  1. Design issues – System architecture
  2. Organizational structure
  3. Management issues – Organization, oversight and control
  4. Financing – start-up capital and revenue models
  5. Implementation strategies
  6. Marketing
  7. Obstacles and Possible Threats
  8. Context and Timing

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Presentations

Over the years I have given dozens of presentations that have been tailored to the needs and interests of various audiences. You can see the range of topics by scanning the titles under My Audio-visual presentations in the sidebar on this site.

During my October 2016 tour, I gave three presentations in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and another in Sardinia, Italy. Two of the Malaysia presentations were at the International Forum on Inclusive Wealth, but I do not yet have recordings of those. The third was an extended presentation and discussion (on October 10) at the Institute of Advanced Islamic Studies titled, A World Without Money and Interest: A pathway toward social justice and economic equity. A video record of the proceedings can be seen on YouTube at https://youtu.be/8BejigzDAVY. The audio only is here, and the slides that were used in that talk can be viewed here.

Another of my best recent presentations can be seen at https://vimeo.com/100765695, or downloaded from https://beyondmoney.files.wordpress.com/2014/07/2012-pbi-videoshow.ppsx.

And the following is a description of the presentation I gave at the 2nd International Conference on Complementary Currency Systems (CCS) at Erasmus University, The Hague, Netherlands, in June, 2013. That presentation was unfortunately not recorded, but I can provide the power point slide show on request.

Presentation Abstract

Reinventing Money: How Complementary Currencies and Mutual Credit Clearing Can Empower People and Create a Sustainable, Regenerative Economy.

Isn’t it ironic that, despite the tremendous scientific and technological advancements and the massive increases in material production that have been achieved over the past two centuries, the world finds itself in the grips of an acute multidimensional crisis, with a large portion of the human population still living in poverty and squalor? It is a further irony that the levels of debt carried by all sectors, both private and governmental, have grown exponentially and much more rapidly than population or any measure of economic output. Every national government around the world is deeply in debt. And debt levels have now reached the point where we are being told that even the world’s richest and most advanced countries cannot provide their citizens with the basic requirements for living a dignified life. We are told that social programs must be drastically cut because countries can no longer afford them.

This presentation explains how our predicament is a direct result of the way in which the global system of money and banking has been structured and managed, how it centralizes power and concentrates wealth in few hands, and increasingly subverts democratic government and personal freedom. It then outlines a parallel, peaceful, and ready path toward a better future, a path based on a fundamental reconceptualization of the ways in which we pay one another for the goods and services we need. It show that, by claiming and exercising the power we already have to give each other credit in an organized and localized way, we can escape the “debt-trap” and avoid the destruction of our communities and environments.

Based on a substantial body of theoretical knowledge, supported by decades of actual market experience, the presentation argues that private and community currencies and moneyless payment alternatives that are properly designed and managed can provide communities with liquidity based on local production, making them less dependent upon banks, national currencies, and global markets, and commence the paradigm shift toward a new peaceful and equitable global order.

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Distinctive features of my work—a personal manifesto

Having immersed myself for more than 30 years in the study of money, banking, finance, and power dynamics, I have attained a unique body of knowledge and skills to guide the next wave of innovation. Here are some of the things that make my work stand out from the rest of the crowd that is engaged in new economics, transformational restructuring, and the development of exchange and financial alternatives:

  1. My comprehension of the geopolitical BIG PICTURE of power based on the centralized control of money and banking which enables a small elite group dominate and decide for the rest of us, whether we like it or not.
  2. My recognition that the essence of money is the collective credit of the people, and that
  3. The interest/usury that is built into the global system of money creation is the DRIVER of artificial economic growth that now threatens civilization and the very existence of life on this finite planet, and is also the driver of increasing disparities of wealth and power that is destroying what little remains of democratic government and is moving the world toward a fascist neo-feudal world order.
  4. My recognition of the credit commons and my urgent call for reclaiming it through (a) the issuance of private currencies by trusted issuers who spend it into circulation, and (b) the organization of small local credit clearing exchanges that lessen dependency upon conventional money (political currencies) and bank borrowing, and create interest-free local liquidity based on local production.
  5. My vision of an open and transparent global system of exchange in which credit is locally controlled within small circles of users who are personally known to one another, but which are networked together in a way that enables locally based credits to be globally useful as payment media.
  6. My recognition of the need to segregate the various functions which money is said to serve, namely, medium of exchange, measure of value, and store of value. (See Money and Debt: a Solution to the Global Crisis).
  7. My consequent call for an independent measure of value and unit of account that is separate and distinct from any established political currency or payment medium, i.e., a pricing unit that is defined in terms of some physical commodity or bundle of commodities that are actively traded in the market.
  8. My call for an abandonment of interest-bearing debt as a general means of finance and the use of shared equity or shared revenue models instead.

And on related topics:

  1. My call for an end to taxation on labor and sales/consumption taxes on basic necessities, and a shift of taxation to privileges, like the limited liability of corporations, and the private use or exploitation of Earth’s resources and other aspects of “the commons.” See http://circinfo.wordpress.com/
  2. My call for truly democratic governing structures that vest decision power at the base comprised of small social units that allocate resources upward as needed.

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