My submitted idea on is a movement of citizens inspired by the presidential campaign who are now submitting ideas for how they think the Obama Administration should change America. It’s called “Ideas for Change in America.”

I’ve submitted an idea and I’d appreciate greatly if you read. If you like it, please visit my idea’s page on to vote for it.

Establish a Research Center on Money

Money is at the center of our economy and fundamentally shapes our relationships as humans and the value system of the society we live in.

Recent financial, ecological and humanitarian events have increased popular intuition that there is something wrong with our current money system itself, and that policies will have limited impact unless the money itself we use is changed.

History has shown that money can exist in various shapes and forms. Some grassroots efforts in many communities in the U.S. and outside the U.S. have shown that alternative/complementary community money is a powerful way to increase local wealth, increase social capital and keep economic activity going in times of recessions/depressions. Last, technology advances such as the Internet, open security and collaborative development efforts have made it easy more than ever before to create new forms of electronic money.

Yet, there is little scientific research, whether theoretical or empirical, available on alternative forms of money, whether based on units of sustainable energy, hours of work of people, online reputation, or commodities.

A Research Center on Money would fund scientific economic research on alternative/complementary forms of money and how they can benefit our communities from neighborhood to cities to counties and states. It would be a tremendous resource for communities to confidently start using money as a powerful tool for change. ideas relating to changing money

I’ve compiled a list of ideas that relate to changing how our money system works:

  • Slow Money (most voted for so far): This is not exactly about changing the money but focusing stimulus efforts on local economies and businesses has the biggest economic impact. My comment: Slow Money should be called “Near Money” and it should be powered by local community currencies.
  • Abolishing Money by “pan voluntarism”. My comment: idealistic/unpractical.
  • Convert to debt-free money: This suggests essentially that the government does not borrow money from banks, but prints it to spend it on project of public utility. My comment: Rather than debt-free money, what I think is meant is interest-free money. Money is debt because it is the unexecuted part of a transaction. Nothing wrong with that. What’s wrong is for a 3rd party to charge money for money, especially in case where there is social capital. Using a 3rd party for trust may indeed lead to social fabric destruction and wealth extraction.
  • Replace monetary system with resource-based economy: The idea is not very clear but it consists in ensuring that the currency can be redeemed for actual resources like corn or gold. Quick comment: Not practical since there is so much more money than raw resources and also because this would put control over money creation in the ends of raw resources producers, which is probably not acceptable.
  • Do away with the Federal Reserve system and Abolish the Federal Reserve. No comment on these ones.

I haven’t seen anything related to asset-based finance and business-to-business trading systems or community currencies.