Illustrations by Anne-Christine Plate

As the global financial crisis proceeds, not only the capitalist system is being questioned, but also money itself.
More and more people start to explore alternative metrics for value transactions, trade and service exchange. They seek to value and reward work that benefits society (through services, products, care or investments), that is normally not recognized by the monetary economy. Community currencies are on the rise, as well as barter systems, time banks or different forms of resource-based economies.

So far, only individuals or small communities live the moneyless life. Nobody knows how this could work on a larger scale, for instance in a city. Is it possible to scale trust? Is bartering better than money exchange? Is resource sharing equivalent to democratic control? And does a gift economy automatically lead to more equality, freedom and solidarity?

Eliminating money does not seem to be the solution for all the problems related to money either – because money is not just a transaction medium, but a massive cultural and social ideology.

In light of all these discrepancies and complexities, this event provided a space for exchanging utopias of a post-money society. Everyone interested in alternative approaches was invited to engage in some collaborative thinking.