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Workshop ‘The Quality of Money’ (in École Normale Supérieure)

Workshop ‘The Quality of Money’

Date: 6th Dec, 2013, 930-1800

Venue: École Normale Supérieure, Jourdan, Paris School of Economics, room 2 (48, boulevard Jourdan – 75014 Paris)

Organiser: KURODA, Akinobu (University of Tokyo)

In association with École des hautes études en sciences sociales and Paris school of economics.

It is a part of a research project funded by Japan Society for the Promotion of Science numbered 22330102.

This is a brainstroming meeting in order to search for new directions of research. 

After a proposal by the orgniser along the agenda below, partipcants are expected to show obseravations or relevalent facts in 10-15 minutes.

Expected paticipants

Patrice Baubeau (Paris X), Jérôme Blanc (Lyon 2), Catherine Brigianni (Athens Academy), Jean Cartelier (Paris X), Giuseppe de Luca (Milan), Georges Depeyrot (CNRS/ENS), Marc Flandreau (Graduate Institute Genève), Georgina Gomez (Rotterdam), Farley Grubb (Delaware), Pierre-Cyrille Hautcoeur (EHESS/PSE), Marcella Lorenzini (Milan), Craig Muldrew (Cambridge), Jürgen Nautz (Vienna), Anders Ögren (Lund), Angela Redish (British Columbia), Alessandro Stanziani (EHESS), Ekaterina Svirina (Finacial U Russian Federation), David Weiman (Columbia, Barnard), Frederick Wherry (Yale)

The Quality of Money
A research project of global monetary history

The quality of money as well as the quantity of money have mattered transactions. We can tell the quality of money according to the degrees along two axes: what extent transactions are made through cohesive relationship or anonymous one and what conversion works between currency for local transaction and that for inter-regional settlement.
Given a size, a transaction settled by cash and another settled by credit sounds to have no difference except for the point that the payment is done instantaneously or deferred. However, there exists a difference even if interest is free. Currency supplies anonymity to transaction while credit (or debt) is not independent from named relationship. For intensifying the frequency of transaction, the former enhances higher degree of freedom in choosing opponents, while the latter develops more cohesive mutual dependence among proximate locals. Currency cannot avoid stagnancy while credit tends to accumulate non-performances.
Due to heterogeneous stagnancy (or non-integral liquidity) according to size of denomination, anonymity supplied by currency does not always bring universality. Monetary supply on book in terms of a unit of account can be infinite while physical supply of currency must be finite. Currency, especially small denomination one, is easy to distribute while it is difficult to assemble on demand. Thus, actual market, especially rural market place, often suffered from shortage of currency. That is why, in spite that currency brings anonymous trade, a local device supplementing the shortage and another device bridging inter-regional settlements were required respectively. This multiplicity often made a currency independent from a unit of account.
Showing full of cases that a unit of account was detached from working currencies, global history suggests that we should disband the trinity of monetary functions; measure of exchange, unit of account and store of value. The separation makes clearer the qualitative difference of money depending on society and according to period. Finding the quality of money enables us to go beyond a dichotomy between money and society.