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D-CENT: Design of social digital currency

The Freecoin Toolchain is a toolkit to build blockchains for the social good

The Freecoin Toolchain is a toolkit to build blockchains for the social good. It aims to improve decentralised trust and identity management for the D-CENT pilot communities.

Key findings

  • Cryptographic blockchain technologies, on the model of Bitcoin, are emerging as an interdisciplinary area of software development for decentralised data commons, value exchange and management of trust.
  • The Freecoin toolkit to build blockchains offers decentralised tools to manage trust and reputation and to easily design and run digital complementary currencies.
  • Freecoin is able to sustain SMEs and finance local services alongside with the national currency. It can be used at city or regional level or be completely bottom-up and self-managed by communities.
  • Most cryptocurrency design approaches tend to privilege the role of software and marginalise human contribution. D-CENT, instead, puts communities back at the centre of the currency creation stage.
  • In order to avoid monetary circuits remaining too far from the real demand expressed by the local economies, currency systems should be ideally managed as commons. Thus, the rules to issue digital currencies must depend on democratic decision-making processes specific to the different communities.

D-CENT is bringing together complementary currency design and the latest development of digital currencies, made famous by Bitcoin. They are developing and documenting a Freecoin Toolchain based on Bitcoin Core 0.10 and capable of bootstrapping the genesis of new ad-hoc blockchains, integrating the work done in the e-democracy D-CENT pilots.

D-CENT will run digital social currency pilots in communities that are already actively designing tools for collective decision-making in local economies.

This work shows that decentralised digital currencies, based on auditable cryptographic blockchain technologies, are of strategic importance in legitimising bottom-up processes in democratic and participatory systems.

The focus is on complementary currency designs able to manage trust and identity relations among participants of multi-currency systems. Freecoin will facilitate the usage and integration of cryptographic blockchain technologies for achieving social sustainability.


Denis Roio, Marco Sachy, Stefano Lucarelli, Bernard Lietaer, Francesca Bria

Part of


Francesca Bria

Francesca Bria

Francesca Bria

Senior Project Lead

Francesca Bria was a Senior Project Lead in the Innovation Lab.

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