Saturday, February 25, 2012


I had an interesting chat yesterday with some folk from the IDA. The conversation inevitably got around to 'where to next' for Ireland and inward investment. One idea I suggested worth exploring is that of making Ireland the global exchange for new types of money. Moneyville, for short.

I've blogged before about the potential for the ePunt, the beauty of the Brixton Pound, and the genius of the Bijlmer Euro. All of these point to a revolutionary transformation in the nature and meaning of money: and it's only starting. Businesses and communities throughout the world are experimenting with new types of digital money, time-based and local currencies, the gamification of money (Farmville/Cityville Cash etc), and the potential for mobile phones (NFC-enabled and others) to replace cards, cash and wallets.

Ireland can be and should be at the centre of all this. We should aim to be the IFSC for new types of money, providing a location for businesses, NGOs and others to launch and/or experiment with different currencies that will help us move beyond the impasse of broken banks and failing government controlled currencies. This is especially important to us in Ireland because the eurozone will likely experience the same fate as the post-Soviet Union ruble zone, as explained in the Futures Company's fascinating new report on The Future of the Eurozone.

Ultimately, the Moneyville strategy will enable us to restore resilience to Ireland's economy and society. It will also restore a degree of 'antifragility' (Nassim Taleb's latest idea) which will leave us less vulnerable to the inevitable failure of a one-size-fits-all monetary and fiscal policy framework for the eurozone.

It will also create a great many new jobs and new businesses - which is where the IDA comes in...


  1. Brilliant idea, Gerard. I've been considering such a local currency for my own town, as I've noticed how it has insulated from the recession those places around the world that have tried it. Good to hear you're in favour of the concept as well.

  2. I second that. Excellent idea. (Wasn't it Hayek who promoted the idea that all people should be free to use any currency of their own choosing, and that there should be lots of competing currencies. - One thing he said that resounded with me!) And good on you too, Hugh. I hope you get something going on that.

  3. Thanks, roc. But as maths wasn't my strongest subject at school, I may be looking for all the help I can get! :)


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