Monday, 1 December 2014

Money and Society MOOC - starts again February 18th 2018!

A free online course at Masters-level will enable you to understand the past, present and future role of money in society. The 7th cohort starts 18th February 2018 and lasts 4 weeks (one lesson every week). Enrol here.




Are you concerned with the banking system? Bemused or fascinated by bitcoin? Starting a local currency? Whereas most courses on money are intended for people with an economics background or banking future, this course is for people who are interested in understanding money from a social innovation perspective – it prepares the ground for answering how to create a better future by reshaping money and currency.

The course is therefore highly interdisciplinary, drawing upon anthropology, sociology, history and heterodox economics. It is designed by Professor Jem Bendell PhD (IFLAS) and Matthew Slater BD (Community Forge), with additional tutoring by alumni of the course (some of whom have gone on to launch their own ICOs).

Typically 50 to 100 people complete the full 4 lessons, and many then continue to interact in the Alumni Forum. Over 20 have progressed to attend the full certificate course in London, which is taught in one week, once a year.

The next offering of the MOOC (Massive Online Open Course) starts online on February 18hth 2017 and runs for a month with four lessons:

Lesson One: An introduction to money: functions, forms, and fallacies
Lesson Two: The history of money and its discontents
Lesson Three: The problems with mainstream monetary systems
Lesson Four: Alternatives

Each lesson begins on a Sunday, consisting of a audio-narrated slides of less than two hours (which you can listen to when you want within the following days), followed by two hours of personal reading and one hour to prepare a written assignment of around 500 words, which must be submitted by the following week.

Participants can view and comment on each other’s assignments in the forum, and can interact as they wish, with tutors commenting on assignments in the forum.

Lessons Two and Four are followed by one hour webinars with the tutors, which occur on Saturday mornings at 10am (UK time). You need access to a decent broadband connection but do not need any special software to engage in the course. If without a powerpoint viewer, participants can view lessons on youtube. Participants cannot start the MOOC late.

Sign up at http://mooc1.communityforge.net The next offering of the MOOC after February will be August 2018.

At the end of this MOOC you will be able to:

  • Critically assess views on the form and function of money and currency by drawing from monetary theories
  • Explain theories on how social, economic and environmental problems arise from mainstream monetary systems
  • Explain alternative forms of money and currency and the theories on how they can support better social, economic and environmental outcomes.
On the MOOC you will be joined by participants on the Certificate of Achievement in Sustainable Exchange, which is a credit-bearing module offered by the Institute for Leadership and Sustainability at the University of Cumbria. Four days of classes in person at the Docklands Campus in London explore the wider issues of currency innovation and the collaborative economy. There is a fee for the certificate, not the MOOC. You must have started the MOOC in order to enrol. The next Certificate course is likely to be in early 2019, unless student interest brings it forward. 

The Tutors 

Matthew Slater is a software engineer who specialises in open source software for community currencies. Co-founder of Community Forge, which produces software for and hosts over 100 local currencies, he is a regular commentator on grassroots initiatives for community control of currency and credit.

See a bit of what the MOOC involves:




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