The Top 10 Ways People Are Changing the Economy

There is a crisis out there, but also a lot of people that are thinking of new ways to change the economy for the good and that are implementing them.

Here is a list of 10 trends you may be considering…. we are also mapping them in this maps: Planet for Change so if you want to complete the list or upload other examples…  Just join the movement!

10. Impact Investing:

Impact investments are investments made into companies, organizations, and funds with the intention to generate measurable social and environmental impact alongside a financial return.

Impact investors actively seek to place capital in businesses and funds that can harness the positive power of enterprise.

The Global Impact investment network  is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to increasing the scale and effectiveness of impact investing.

9. Collaborative Consumption:

A new  class of economic arrangements is arising… on  in which participants share access to products or services, rather than having individual ownership. Often this model is enabled by technology and peer communities.

The collaborative consumption model is  used for example in:

There are a lot more examples and I leave you this link if you are interested in exploring more: Collaborative consumption

8. Time Banking:

Timebanking is a means of exchange used to organise people and organisations around a purpose, where time is the principal currency. 

For every hour participants ‘deposit’ in a timebank,  they are able to ‘withdraw’ equivalent support in time when they themselves are in need. In each case the participant decides what they can offer.

Everyone’s time is equal, so one hour of my time is equal to one hour of your time, irrespective of whatever we choose to exchange.

In Spain there are many Time Banks (Bancos de Tiempo) and an Association (Asociación para el Desarrollo de los Bancos de Tiempo). They introduce the concept of Time banking in this video as well as their role to support the sector in Spain

See more at:

7. Worker-Owned Business:

Gone are the days when CEOs sit in the corner office and workers toil on the ground. In these new businesses, the workers are the owners and they are making decisions together, to share in the profits and losses, and figure out ways to sustain or grow their businesses.

6. Gift Economy:

Beyond barter, this is the Pay It Forward movement. You receive a service or product as a gift from someone (often anonymously) and you contribute what you can to provide for the next person.

The Karma Kitchen, where your meal is already paid for and your tip provides the meal for the next hungry soul, are leading the way with this model. In Spain there is a similar initiative called, Cafés pendientes that is rapidly expanding.

the_good_chainOr one that I love and have written about and collaborated with: The Good Chain.

5. Freecycling:

Freecycle IS about keeping useful things out of the trash. It IS about giving away something that has no use in our life anymore to someone who could extend its usefulness a little longer.

Another off-shoot of the gift economy, freecycling includes everything from Clothing Exchanges, to Crop Swaps, to Book Trades, to more!  By clearing out of what we don’t need or use, and getting it into the hands of those who could put it to good use, we decrease clutter, hoarding and consumerism, for great environmental, aesthetic and social justice impact.

There is a Freecycling network , made up of 5,106 groups with 9,318,506 members around the world that is organised an entirely non-profit movement of people who are giving (and getting) stuff for free in their own towns.

4. Community Currency:

Big banks always seem to need bailing out, and cash spent at corporations leaves the community almost instantly.  What if we had local money that served local businesses, circulated amongst the community, and celebrated the uniqueness of the places we live in?  Instead of disappearing into fictional derivatives, folks are generating script that serves to strengthen and uplift their neighbourhood and keeps the wealth flow at home.

3. Gross National Happiness:

The tiny, remote Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan first invented the idea of using happiness as a measure of good governance. They developed the Gross national happiness (GNH)  that measures not only the economic output, but also the environmental impacts, the spiritual and cultural growth of citizens, mental and physical health and the strength of the corporate and political systems.

You can find a video explain how it works HERE

2. Small Is Beautiful:

Tired of the isolation, anonymity, and lack of accountability, people are supporting the local and small movement: moving their money to small cooperative banks; frequenting local businesses; and buying food at farmers’ markets.

1. Social Entrepreneurs:

And of course, one of the ways I enjoy promoting, supporting and working on: social entrepreneurship!!  A new way to do business having social impact.   If you want to explore more about it you will find more info HERE.

If you want to meet social entrepreneurs or/ and have a social enterprise and need support look for a local HUB, incubators of social enterprises. They have spread around.  I am partner at HUB MAdrid and know first hand how useful it is to have a network of likeminded people.

And two short videos that explains the concept.

And this one by  the British Foundation UnLtd  describing the  The journey of a social entrepreneur

Source: by Shilpa Jain of 

Do you have others you want to share with me?

There are some examples in  the interactive Planet of Change MAP

If you want to read about this in Portuguese check:

It has also been translated into Korean in this blog: Impact Square 



  1. Manuel on 6 de August de 2013 at 21:53

    Me encanta Karma Kitchen!! Recuerda a la iniciativa en España de http://www.cafes

    Ojalá hubiera un Karma Kitchen por aquí para ir ya mismo!!

    • guadalupedelamata on 14 de August de 2013 at 18:12

      Hola Manuel!, si, yo también iría… incluyo los cafés pendientes en el post. Gracias!!

  2. Willi on 7 de August de 2013 at 07:51

    Reblogged this on social foresight network and commented:
    Añade tus pensamientos aquí… (opcional)

  3. catarinacvs on 8 de August de 2013 at 20:14

    May I translate it into portuguese and give the credits to publish on my blog?

    • guadalupedelamata on 9 de August de 2013 at 08:14

      Of course!! If you could mention my blog as resource and include a link to it it would be great. Let me know when you publish the post, I will include a link to the version in Portuguese and a link to your blog if you are ok with it.

    • guadalupedelamata on 14 de August de 2013 at 18:14

      Hi! I mentioned your blog for reference in the post… the more people that can read about this the better!

  4. 10 Formas de Mudar a Economia | Ser Kahlo on 9 de August de 2013 at 11:40

    […] texto foi originalmente publicado aqui, no blog INOVATION FOR SOCIAL CHANGE, e tem como fonte  Shilpa Jain […]

  5. Carlin Archer on 22 de August de 2013 at 10:03

    We launched a global time banking platform called earlier in 2013. Our platform can be used as a local time banking system or globally to connect with people across the world.

    • guadalupedelamata on 3 de September de 2013 at 08:38

      Hi Carlin!
      Thanks for the info… I will include it in the list! keep in touch! Best

  6. Gonzalo on 24 de August de 2013 at 23:40

    Miren o bien Ya somos más de 800 empresas B en todo el mundo.

    • guadalupedelamata on 25 de August de 2013 at 07:02

      Gracias Gonzalo!! Conozco b Company.super interesante, la incluyo en el listado. Saludos

  7. Stephanie A. Stradford on 2 de December de 2013 at 12:34

    Gracias! On behalf of, this article lets us know that our programs were ahead of their times 15-20 years ago because we incorporated half of these initiatives. Before now, I was extremely discouraged because low and moderate income communities have not seen the value. You have encouraged me to continue the quest to level the playing field.

  8. Enrique González-Herrero on 9 de December de 2013 at 19:32

    Enhorabuena por el post y por el blog. Es muy bueno, gracias!

  9. […] emocionando a pesar de haberlo visto mil veces. Si queréis saber más, en este artículo sobre Como la gente está cambiando la Economía encontraréis ejemplos como los Bancos de Tiempo, el Crowdfunding, el consumo colaborativo, la […]

  10. laurent on 28 de July de 2014 at 18:45

    Genial Guadalupe, fantástico post! gracias

    • Guadalupe de la Mata on 1 de August de 2014 at 07:28

      Muchas gracias Laurent! Me anima mucho tu comentario. Un abrazo

    • Guadalupe de la Mata on 1 de August de 2014 at 07:31

      Por cierto, me ha encantado vuestra página, te animas a contar aquí lo que hacéis, me parece precioso!También sería genial si lo subieras al mapa de innovación social de
      Un abrazo

  11. laurent on 1 de August de 2014 at 21:51

    Hola Guadalupe, un placer compartir a través de vuestra plataforma algunos de los proyectos que estamos llevando a cabo. Son proyectos con alto impacto social, sin perder la perspectiva económica y ambiental, a través de modelos de gestión triple balance. Como no puede ser de otra manera, son proyectos con mucha implicación de los equipos, y no hay horas suficientes en un día para darles la visibilidad que nos gustaría, de hecho, en la web y foros, no están proyectos que deberíamos poner en valor. Me comprometo en los próximos días enviarte algo de información para si lo consideras publicarlos para compartir las enseñanzas que vamos sacando.

    Un abrazo, y por cierto, muy interesante tu site, nos gusta mucho. Laurent

  12. […] Sigo trabajando en mi libro e investigando las soluciones que están surgiendo como respuesta a la crisis personal, organizativa y económica a las que nos enfrentamos. Algunas de esas respuestas parten de los ciudadanos, que están actuando pro-activamente para transformar la crisis en una oportunidad de cambio positivo o bien individualmente o de forma colectiva. […]