New "Means of Exchange" project

Mail from Martin at Future Business

Hi there

I hope this will be of interest for local sourcing and more.

You may have heard of Ken Banks, an award-winning social entrepreneur who is best known for his work creating FrontlineSMS, a highly successful text messaging platform used for a wide variety of development applications throughout Africa and beyond.

He is also behind the cash mob concept.

He is currently working on a new idea which Future Business would like to help him develop, and to do so he needs to connect with the widest range of people possible at this point both because the project requires a diverse range of expertise, and because Kens approach is collaborative.

The new project is called Means of Exchange, and it seeks to leverage everyday technologies to help people reconnect with local business, local resources, and each other. As the current economic crisis demonstrates, cycles of turbulence and disruption are now part of everyday life. Means of Exchange seeks to help buffer people from economic shock, and to help build resilience among communities. You can read more on the website, and watch a ten minute talk, at

Im contacting you because I think your group includes the kind of people that Ken needs to hear from. Hes helpfully listed the types of expertise and background that would be really helpful at this point. Hopefully you will recognise yourself in one or more of the categories. And crucially you will be able to suggest others who fit the descriptions:

  1. Economics/alternative economic models
  2. Games (players, and games developers)
  3. Behaviour change
  4. Local resource use/sustainability/resilience
  5. Branding and marketing of social causes/issues
  6. Software developers/web developers
  7. Software testing
  8. Online community building
  9. Social media, SEO
  10. Anyone else with a passion for what MoE is all about

We are aiming to hold a single session to brainstorm the project and how it could be helped to launch successfully. Outline currently along these lines:

5.30/6pm start for max 2 hours, with food and drink

Last week of November eg. 26, 27, 28, 29 TBC

Venue Cambridge TBC

Please let us know whether you are interested in attending in principle, and we will include you in the date setting. We hope you can come. And please suggest and pass on to others who have the skills listed.

Many thanks for your help.



Future Business

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