Thursday 3 December
Friday 4 December
Thursday December 3
MORNING SESSION: BLOCKCHAIN: REVOLUTION OR BUSINESS AS USUAL?
The different usages of the blockchain — as the grid on which Bitcoin and other crypto-currencies are running, as a platform to sell art, and as an administrative and transparent decision-making and voting technology —show that it is a political-economic response to the question: what needs to change? The undermining of existing financial formations can be found in anonymity, p-2-p networks and bottom-up initiatives that are made possible by this consensus-based protocol.
How can we generate trust in these types of technologies on a larger-scale — expanding outside the domain of the small, tech-savvy communities — without falling back on a centralized mediator like banks? What underlying structures, political and economic, does it tackle? What does the future hold for crypto-currencies and blockchain technology? Will they be co-opted by the big banks or will they form parallel exchange systems of trust and security?
Speakers: Primavera De Filippi, David Golumbia, Bruce Pon
Moderator: Eduard de Jong
WORKSHOPS & BREAK-OUT SESSIONS:
Avenging Money (with Max Haiven)
Max Haiven is Assistant Professor in the Division of Art History and Critical Studies at the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, Canada and an expert in all matters money and art. During this workshop he will discuss his recent book ‘Cultures of Financialization’.
Negotiating Trust on Crowdfunding platforms (with Robert Van Boeschoten)
Robert Van Boeschoten (NL) is a philosopher (ph.D. on Marshall Mcluhan, 1996) interested in the cultural impact of media on society at large, and organizations in particular.
Free Money Movement & The Commons (with Jim Costanzo)
Jim Costanzo is the founding director of the Aaron Burr Society (ABS). ABS was launched in 2008 to expose the myths of Free Market and Free Trade while challenging the integrity of Wall Street and their corporate cronies.
AFTERNOON SESSION: ARTISTIC INTERVENTIONS IN FINANCE
If money is a medium, it can be imagined in different ways. If money is a medium, it can be used to different ends. Over the last seven years we have seen the rise of finance art: shrewd, bold, well-versed, trickster-like tools, installations and objects actively engaging with high finance and banking systems. In depth-research, provocation and visualization are some of the tactics used to critique, visualize and materialize the virtual political economy of banking and finance. Ranging from a guidebook on how to extort money from banks, to a stock-trading algorithm running on emotions, an installation that visualizes market philanthropy and a critical reflection on the success of crowdfunding platforms. The work of artists’ investigation into financial systems manifests into a variety of critical and multi-disciplinary projects.
How does money affect social processes and the way we relate to one another? Where is there room for intervention and autonomy? Is there such a thing as finance art? And what alternatives are imagined?
Speakers: Stephanie Rothenburg, Nuria Guell & Levi Orta, Silvio Lurosso, Scott Kildall
Moderator: Max Haiven
Friday December 4
MORNING SESSION: BRINGING THE DARK SIDE OF MONEY TO LIGHT
Some artists, journalists and activists have taken the important first step beyond moral outrage and uncovered stories that have shed light on the extensive corruption within the finance sector. From the Swiss Leaks project, that documented how the HSBC Bank helped its clients shield income from tax collectors, to the exposure of financial loopholes and visualizations of lucrative offshore tax avoidance operations. Much of the finance and banking scandals that have unraveled over the past year started off with whistleblowing and the work of investigative journalism. This raises some questions:
Do we need to become financially literate, and if so, what do we need to raise our financial literacy? What does it take to read the classified documents of the world’s private banking systems? Can only experts make proper use of them?
What are the key takeaways of these investigative projects? Are we drowning in material or have we only caught a glimpse of the tip of the iceberg?
Speakers: Femke Herregraven, Paul Radu, Paolo Cirio
Moderator: Cecile Landman
WORKSHOPS & BREAK-OUT SESSIONS:
Robin Hood: Peerhood Gaming (with Pekko Koskinen)
Robin Hood Minor Asset Management is a financial project most known for its ‘Deleuzian’ hedge fund that began in 2013 in Helsinki. It describes itself as “an alternative method of financial investment, providing a way for those shut out of big-time investment funds to profit from the same systems that benefit the Wall Street fat cats”. Besides presenting their algorithm, also known as The Parasite, Robin Hood will discuss their current plans to launch its own blockchain technologies.
P2P Insurance (with Jip de Ridder)
Decentralized insurance claims that we can insure ourselves at a lower cost, regardless of pre-existing conditions. As we all know, commercial insurance companies take up to a 20% cut and spend it on employees who look for reasons to reject your claim. Why don’t your friends and family validate your health insurance claim?
An Ownership Layer for the Internet (with Ascribe)
Ascribe lets you share your digital creations without worrying about losing ownership rights. Started in 2014, Ascribe offers a new revenue model for artists and designers to copyright and manage their rights online.
AFTERNOON SESSION: TACTICS FOR ECONOMIC DISSENT
The tasks on the table after formulating a rigorous critique on the current banking and finance system are plentiful. The question is not what can be done, but where do we start? Financial activism today goes beyond calls for laws, regulations and institutional oversight. Different alternative practices are unfolding, ranging from networking initiatives, ethical banking, speculative hacks in high finance trading, and hands-on grass roots solutions. Although there are a variety of alternatives for new monetary exchange, they all seem to run into similar challenges. Amongst which is the challenge of how to engineer social political concerns into these new systems of exchange and what kind of social frameworks do these new systems produce? What are the power dynamics surrounding these different practices of dissent? What counter-narrative is produced in these first steps towards alternative monetary systems, and what do these alternative models have in common?
Speakers: Robin Hood Minor Asset Management, Enric Duran, Rachel O’Dwyer
Moderator: Brett Scott
WHAT ELSE IS GOING ON?
The Gray Zones of Creativity and Capital
The Gray Zones of Creativity and Capital (Ed. Gordana Nikolić and Šefik Tatlić) consists of works from authors that tackle the relationship between art industries and capital. Institute of Network Cultures will present this publication at the Moneylab#2 conference as the most recent addition to the Theory on Demand publication series.
MoneyLab Reader: An Intervention in Digital Economy
In April 2015 the MoneyLab Reader was published. Download or order it here
The Reader serves as a resource on alternatives in networked economies.This publication is published both in a paper version and in a variety of electronic versions (pdf, e-pub etc.).