Leanne Ussher is an Australian monetary economist working on systemic risk and sustainable financial networks with the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies, Germany. Leanne has been an economics professor at Queens College, City University of New York and the University of Massachusetts Boston; a research scientist in complex systems at the Institute for Scientific Interchange in Turin; a consultant to the CFA on international monetary reform; and a securities analyst at the Reserve Bank of Australia. Leanne has a PhD in economics from the New School for Social Research and a graduate diploma in applied finance and investment from the Securities Institute of Australia.
Project: The Sardinian Community Currency: Sardex
Using trade network data from the Sardex exchange, this project will create a friendly database environment to study network liquidity and its evolution. The goal is to understand how a complementary currency can increase economic prosperity in a community.
Main Results in Detail
After cleaning the data, a network graph was plotted onto the map of Sardinia, showing the trade relationships between businesses and employees. The network data was used to describe and visualize both stocks and flows of Sardex accounts. In Sardinia, Italy, a group of social activists launched a complementary currency, Sardex, to escape the global financial crisis and the euro meltdown in 2008–09. Launched in 2010, it has been lauded as extremely successful in bringing spare capacity back into economic production.
A study of the network over time, considering the manner in which it evolves, e.g. how current members are embedded in the system, and whether their connections are growing over time; to what extent there is new membership; and the speed of embedding. Spatial and temporal analysis could be investigated using spatial autocorrelation measures.