Will Ruddick is a development economist focusing on currency innovation. After completing graduate school researching high energy physics as a collaboration member at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center, he found his analysis skills and passion drawn to alternative economics and development. Since 2008 Will has lived in East Africa and managed several successful development programs in environment, food security and economic development. He is dedicated to connecting communities to their own abundance, and is an advocate for, and designer of currencies for poverty eradication and sustainable development. Mr. Ruddick has pioneered Community Currency Programs in Kenya since 2010 and is the founder of the award winning Bangla-Pesa program. He consults on Community Currencies worldwide and while researching with the University of Cape Town’s Environmental Economics Policy Research Unit. Mr. Ruddick is also an associate scholar with the University of Cumbria’s Institute for Leadership and Sustainability.
Will’s specialties are program development, research, data analysis, agent based modeling, computer simulation, monitoring and evaluation, complementary currencies, informal settlements, environmental programs, cooperatives.
In this episode, Will talks to us about his work over the past eleven years, organizing micro-entrepreneurs in poor areas of Kenya. Central to his work has been the creation of community currencies that have enabled a greater amount of trading and utilization of capacity in those communities. Recently, Will and his associates have been implementing digital forms of those currencies, and networking communities together in a wide area exchange system.
Teaser photo credit: Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung website.