Event Reinvent.Money 2016: October 14, 16-19h

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On the 14th of October 2016 I organise with Paul Buitink, Richard van der Linde and Studium Generale TU Delft the conference Reinvent.Money. From 16-19 we will explore three topics: the role of central and commercial banks in the digital age, the euro dilemma, and the (necessary?) link between money and states.

First, Bank of England researcher Michael Kumhof will present his latest research on “The macroeconomics of central bank issued digital currencies” and Arnoud Boot (UvA, SFL, WRR) will present his forthcoming report for the Dutch Scientific Research Council (WRR in Dutch) on the influence of financialisation on society. Second, Stephanie Kelton (advisor to Bernie Sanders) will explain the euro dilemma (the choice between making the next step to a fiscal union or leaving the euro) and politicians will debate this dilemma. Third, we explore the link between money and states in the future. Financial activist Brett Scott (author of The Heretic’s Guide to Global Finance. Hacking the Future of Money) will share his ideas and debate with Lex Hoogduin (RUG, former DNB). Finally, the organising committee will attempt to draw some conclusions.

Tickets are free (donation based after the event, you decide what it’s worth to you) and could be ordere here. I hope to see you in Delft on the 14th of October!

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Great talk by Sony Kapoor

This is a great lecture by the Managing Director of Re-define Sony Kapoor. He states that on the on hand money and finance have brought world society to the next level and that on the other hand the nature and dynamics of today’s world financial system brought and still brings world society into danger. When Lehman Brothers collapsed, nobody knew what was going on, because there was (and still is) a complete lack of transparancy. Kapoor states that the financial system is still fragile due to its exposure and vulnerability to global events. He examines that the current financial system is characterised by an increased number and ease of financial transactions: just-in-time-management has become commonplace within finance. But we must not forget that there is one big differences between manufacturing and finance:  finance has no logic of time. Nowadays we can move money within miliseconds around the globe and this is one of the main reasons for instability. Kapoor makes a powerful comparison with the traffic: we need traffic lights, speed controls and smaller cars to get back in control of the financial system.

Europe on the Brink

In de documentaire Europe on the Brink geven redacteuren en verslaggevers van de Wall Street Journal hun analyse van de Europese schuldencrisis. Helder wordt uitgelegd dat Europese politici in eerste instantie hebben zitten slapen en dat de oplossing hoe dan ook geld gaat kosten. Wij zullen verliezen moeten nemen, ook in Nederland. Er is simpelweg te veel geld geleend tegen rente en onbeperkt schulden maken gaat niet. Het gaat al lang niet meer alleen om de staatsschulden, maar ook om de schulden van huishoudens, bedrijven en de financiële sector zelf.

Opvallend is dat alle oplossingen die worden besproken in de documentaire uitgaan van het huidige financiële systeem. In mijn ogen is dit onvoldoende en dienen Europese landen te gaan experimenteren met andere – betere – geldsystemen. Indien wij binnen dit systeem blijven acteren, is het wachten op de volgende bubble. Het huidige systeem dat rendement en rente centraal stelt leidt per definitie tot ongelimiteerde en oncontroleerbare groei. De prikkels sturen ons richting zeepbellen. Het zal echt radicaal anders moeten om duurzaamheid, sociale rechtvaardigheid en financiële stabiliteit te realiseren. Laten we hierover nadenken.