1. John Thackara:
“The good news is that a wave of social innovation – its impact amplifed by new technologies – is emerging within the solidarity economy – in the North as well as the South. A new web portal called Means of Exchange, for example, recently launched by Ken Banks, is collecting examples of how emerging, everyday technologies can be used to democratize opportunities for economic self-sufficiency, rebuild local community, and promote a return to local resource use. A diversity of different tools, practices and platforms is healthy, Banks believes – but not if too many wheels get reinvented.” (www.resilience.org/stories/2013-05-28/cycle-commerce-as-an-ecosystem)
“Means of Exchange looks at how emerging, everyday technologies can be used to democratise opportunities for economic self-sufficiency, rebuild local community and promote a return to local resource use, leading us to a better, fairer, more locally-connected world.
If you’re one of a growing number of people interested in how we might achieve economic self-sufficiency, or you wonder what impact the current economic system is having on communities around the world, or you’re curious about the kinds of tools and resources that can help you rebuild yours wherever you are, then Means of Exchange is for you.
We’ll be looking at how a combination of everyday technologies and human ingenuity can be used to democratise opportunities for economic self-sufficiency, rebuild local community and promote a return to local resource use. We’ll encourage new thinking, build new tools and take a fresh look at the public messaging behind local economic empowerment schemes to help make them more inclusive, simple, relevant, fun and engaging in today’s social media-driven world.
Many of these ideas are not new, it’s just that no-one has successfully solved many of them yet. Not surprisingly, we’ll not come up with the answers overnight. These are complex, deeply-rooted, difficult problems and it’ll take time. But if you’re up for a challenge and believe in a fairer, better locally-connected world, then please join us. We won’t be able to do this without you.” (www.meansofexchange.com/about-moe/)