A summary of the recent trial in Sweden, published at Resilience.org , presents a hopeful development with complementary currency as a driver of community development.
As economies fail throughout Europe it is becoming clearer that communities should come together to provide the security and safety that neither businesses or local authorities have the capability to provide. Rather than driving globalisation, the money system should encourage these communities to become more self-reliant and resilient.
Some of the features of ITK that make it especially interesting as community growth driver:
only for volunteer hours: this means that the currency can be issued, used, swapped outside of the national currency system and be used by people otherwise outside of the official economy. The currency encourages volunteering but can be used to provide volunteers with things from other volunteers.
needs no central clearing: this means that the system is easy to set up, not even a website is absolutely necessary, although good to have.
makes sense as a tally to keep track of a voluntary project’s hours promised. By making ITKs and donating them to a project the project is energised to go out and find people ready to volunteer in return for ITK vouchers.