Report on the CommunityForge CC Strategy Retreat

John Rogers reports:

Eat, drink, tell stories, laugh, debate: all with one purpose – to redesign money.

Or at least to discover new possibilities for different kinds of monies. That was the goal of 20+ participants at Community Forge’s second annual ‘currency retreat’ at the Tiocan Eco-Centre high above Lake Geneva on the weekend of February 4th and 6th 2012:

Some were into peer-to-peer networks, others wanted to improve the currency software, one argued for linking land reform to local currencies and others wanted to improve overall strategies for the development of currencies.

The first day was focussed around key questions: ‘What do I value?’; ‘What does currency success look, sound and feel like five years from now?’. These questions generated a lot of personal connection with the issues. We then played a game to discover what happens when we each list our needs and assets and then share them with each other, thus modelling the process of developing a local currency:

Dr. Adrian Wrigley made a powerful case for Location Value Covenenants based on the land value tax ideas of Henry George and described his collaboration with Deirdre Kent in New Zealand:

John Rogers presented some new ideas for increasing the sustainability of new currency systems based around three principles: a global platform for local development; crowd-mapping the assets and needs; critical mass of individuals, businesses and voluntary organisations signed up before launch. Newer systems in development seem to be adopting these principles.

After a delicious fondue, we refilled our glasses with local wine to be entertained by tales from inside the Davos World Economic Forum by Professor Jem Bendell. He challenged us all to think who we would talk to if we were invited. The dinner queue and the bar seemed to be the best places to get a conversation going with the likes of Muhammed Yunus and Paolo Coelho…After Jem’s gems Matthew Slater invited us to Occupy Money with tales from New York and London and the fate of the OWS Protest Notes.

Sunday was taken up with strategic planning for CommunityForge and detailed discussions about vision, mission, governance and structure along with proposals to collaborate as Associates. Finally it was agreed to try a new collaboration platform to enable ongoing discussions:

All in all a non-stop weekend of conversation, collaboration and connection that resulted in a new strapline for Community Forge: "connecting communities to their own abundance".


Tim Anderson, Community Forge Chair (Geneva)
Matthew Slater Community Forge Secretary (Nomadic)
Shawn Berlin, Community Forge Treasurer (Lisbon, Portugal)
Jem Bendell, Community Forge Strategist (Geneva)
John Rogers, founder of Value for People (Steinau, Germany)
Marie Ullens, LETS Wallonies (Wavre, Belgium)
Xavier Vuider, LETS Wallonies (Jemmel, Belgium)
Danté Monson, Community Builder (Bruxelles, Belgium)
Tim Bialoborski, Developer L365 Community (Karlovy Vary, Czech Republic)
Danièle Warynski, Professor at Haute Ecole des Travailleurs Sociales (Geneva)
Camille Bierens de Haan, founder of (Geneva)
Nicolas Briet, founder of (Thoiry, France)
Michel & Cinzia Stampone, founders of SEL du Salève (Beaumont, France)
Etienne Hayem, Les Valeureux (Paris, France)
Adrian Wrigley, Systemic Fiscal Reform Group (Guingamp, France)
David Newbery, Association AOM (Geneva)

You may see photos and videos here