Dossier: Ā«Social and Solidarity Economy: Experiences and ChallengesĀ»ISSUE 6 (NOV 2016)

Monetary panarchy

Abstract

This article analyses the sustainability of the monetary system, with a systemic focus based in complex thinking. This thinking is far removed from the simple and the conventional, considering not only the distinct actors involved in the system but also the relationships and interactions between them. It is a way of thinking that views systems not as static or permanent, but as dynamic equilibriums linked to adaptation and change.

Being a socio-ecological system, the monetary system is subject to the dynamic behaviour of an adaptive cycle, which in turn is part of a panarchy of systems drawn to different scales across space and time. It is only when one considers this nested network of interconnected systems that it is possible to ensure the sustainability of each system individually and of the group as a whole.

The current monopoly of money in the form of bank debt has reached a point where it is so rigid and centralized it has become unsustainable. Proof of this can be seen in the systemic crisis we are currently living in. From a systemic focus based in complex thinking, this article analyses how the introduction of complementary currencies into the monetary system is one way in which its sustainability can be improved, also contributing to the sustainability of the planetary system as a whole, both economically and environmentally.

complex thinking;  sustainability;  sustainable development;  monetary system;  complementary currencies;  panarchy;  adaptive cycle; 
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