Lars Schall meets Bernard Lietaer: In this exclusive video interview, the internationally renowned currency expert Lietaer, who has worked in many different functions in the world of money, advocates an upgrade of our monetary paradigm as a systemic solution to the financial crisis. The monopoly of a single currency in favor of the banking system must be eradicated. Diversity must substitute globally expended monoculture.
By Lars Schall
Bernard Lietaer, who was born in 1942 in Belgium, is an international expert in the design and implementation of currency systems. He has studied and worked in the field of money for more than thirty-five years in a broad range of capacities: as a central banker, fund manager, university professor, and consultant to numerous governments, multinational corporations, and community organizations.
With the publication of his post-graduate thesis at MIT in 1971 (which included a description of “floating exchanges”) and the Nixon Shock of that same year which eradicated the Bretton Woods system by suspending the link of the US dollar to gold, the techniques that he had developed were overnight the only systematic research which could be used to deal with all of the major and marginal currencies of the world.
Bernard Lietaer co-designed and implemented the convergence mechanism to the single European currency system and served as president of the Electronic Payment System at the National Bank of Belgium. He co-founded and managed GaiaCorp, one of the largest and most successful currency management firms in the world. In this capacity he was named by Business Week in the early 1990’s the world’s best currency trader.
I have met Mr. Lietaer recently in Germany in order to talk with him about the great mystery in everybody’s life: money.
A former professor of International Finance at the University of Louvain, Lietaer has also taught in the past at Sonoma State University and Naropa University. He is currently a Research Fellow at the Center for Sustainable Resources of the University of California at Berkeley and Visiting Professor at the Finance University in Moscow.
The monetary system as we know it today is considered by most as a constant, even regarded as God-given. Bernard Lietaer, however, shows that there have been throughout history entirely different systems. He is the author / co-author of many books on the subject of money, among them “The Future of Money: Beyond Greed and Scarcity” (Random House, 2001) and “Money and Sustainability: The Missing Link” (Triarchy Press, 2012).