SEEDS – a digital currency for the benefit of all
Franz Josef Allmayer,
Founder Integrity.Earth, Lead Ambassador SEEDS
Reading Time: 6 minutes
Our planetary and human condition is shaped by our financial systems. Today’s standard currency is centrally created with debt and interest attached to it. This debt-based money is distributed through “trickle-down economics” in which money trickles down (or doesn’t) from the top of the pyramid to all levels of society. If we are to change the trajectory of humanity, we will need to evolve our systems.
Inspired by the mycelial networks that sustain complex ecosystems, SEEDS connects people and organizations in ways that regenerate and distribute value more effectively, benefiting the long-term well-being of the whole system. SEEDS is an open-source, decentralized, citizen-governed & evolved financial system that redefines what currency can do for society. The creation of Seeds (the currency of SEEDS) is done algorithmically through transparent protocols, which allows creating as much money as there is demand for exchange — reversing the trend of inequality and concentration of power of today’s dominant systems. Downloadable via an app, it offers a compelling alternative to the current system.
In line with the taskfarm concept Franz Josef Allmayer was invited by Hermann Gams and Harald Katzenschläger, dreamacademia, to the interview.
SEEDS, a new blockchain-based currency, has been launched. What is the benefit of using it?
Franz Josef Allmayer: The real promise of the digital age is to transition us away from a monoculture of consumption imposing over all other forms of diversity, both cultural as well as biological. We now have the tools and technological capacity to empower and scale our human ability to cooperate and exchange with one another, enabling all of us to converge around bio-regional economies of unprecedented abundance. In order to transmute the shortfalls of “trickle-down economics” and “debt-based currency” which shape our current paradigm, SEEDS distributes value generated from a robust circulatory flow of currency directly into the accounts of people and organizations that are contributing towards the growth and maintenance of a healthy economy, community, ecology, and society. Thus supporting and accelerating the adoption of regenerative practices that are otherwise lost in market failures of anthropocenic proportions.
Mimicking nature’s holistic qualities for exchanging value, it enables a co-creative, grassroots, and globally scalable effort that aligns radical empowerment of purpose with finance. Unlocking creativity and cooperation at scale are our most effective tools to resolve the complex system failure we collectively face.
How is it available?
Franz Josef Allmayer: At its core SEEDS is simply a payment platform, much like PayPal or VISA. A platform where you can transfer funds anywhere in the world in fractions of a second without being charged fees. Instead of charging fees, SEEDS rewards for the privilege of using your own money, for your participation and gives you a voice in the governance and evolution of it. We have made access as easy as downloading an app, the SEEDS “Passport”.
Who will be your first users?
Franz Josef Allmayer: Our immediate target audience are initiatives, movements, new forms of enterprise, and lifestyle experiments encompassing all aspects of life, which are invisibly connected in a shared attempt to bring about a more sustainable future. SEEDS starts by recognizing and rewarding those who are already serving the transition towards a regenerative society. A broader, more interconnected and integrative approach to development is not only asked for but is already on its way. We now have a unique opportunity to integrate these impulses into a worthy planetary response adequate to the scale of the opportunity.
Can you give one example of an organization that is using SEEDS already?
Franz Josef Allmayer: On the 5th of November 2019 we launched the Alpha version of the SEEDS “Passport”. Pre-marketing, simply through word of mouth, we have received around 150 applications from allies who wanted to join the cooperative economy and are ready to use Seeds as a complementary means of exchange. We have selected an initial batch of organizations across multiple sectors of society, encompassing universities, telecommunication service providers, local food networks, cooperative housing, foundations, movements, festivals, B Corporations, indigenous communities, among many others, catalyzing collaboration across the globe.
How are SEEDS generated?
Franz Josef Allmayer: The nature of blockchain allows us to track the circulatory flow of the currency of an economy in real-time. Through this we can algorithmically balance the supply of currency to meet the demand of currency over time; this removes the artificial scarcity built into our current financial systems and replaces it with transparent protocols that ensure we have exactly as much currency as we need to exchange, no more (inflation) and no less (deflation/depression). Seeds are simply created to replace destroyed Seeds and/or to meet new demand.
As supply and demand homeostasis is established, we now have “intrinsic stability” in the value of Seeds — which allows Seeds to become a superior and appreciating unit of accounting over fiat currency. For example, the USD loses 3–12% of purchasing power year over year and alternatives such as Bitcoin are plagued with extreme volatility, the concentration of wealth and unsustainable energy consumption. In this context, we put forth a compelling financial tool that attracts both small- and large-scale funding, rewarding earth stewards as well as investors who are seeking a more stable currency in a sustainable ecosystem.
And how are Seeds distributed?
Franz Josef Allmayer: How we distribute these new Seeds – in what we call “the harvest” – is essentially different from our current financial system. SEEDS is the exact opposite of “trickle-down economics”, as the harvest is distributed directly to the accounts of the people and organizations contributing towards the growth and maintenance of a healthy economy, community, ecology, and society. When you build your contribution score you increase your share of the harvest. Another portion of the harvest is directed towards bioregional grants, where citizens in the bioregional cooperative collectively decide how best to allocate this funding towards regenerating ecosystems and societies. This is how we intend to finance and mobilize the large-scale regeneration work that is required. The harvest, which is the aggregate sum of the collective efforts, increases when the SEEDS economy is thriving – which is what ties all our financial interests together. This mechanic unites our financial interests to reward and encourage cooperation towards a favorable transition for all of us. This model creates a series of positive feedback loops gamed for growth, ecological regeneration, equality, and the creation of local food systems and resilient communities.
Can I use Seeds and if so how?
Franz Josef Allmayer: Everyone can use Seeds. As soon as the SEEDS “passport” is publicly launched it will be available for everyone to download. In the meantime, you can request someone from the SEEDS community for an invite, which helps users build their contribution score and increase their share of the harvest. You can access the goods and services the alliance members provide to the community directly through the marketplace of the SEEDS passport. Furthermore, we are already preparing plug-ins for direct exchanges on the web and Point of Sale tools so that you will be able to pay with Seeds directly from your mobile in your favorite restaurant or local farmers market, for example. Additionally, we have set up an incentive system to reward people that are contributing to the growth of the movement. If you enjoy weaving networks together, consider joining the bio-regional ambassador program where we reward co-creators contributing to building the global community.
It is like a reversed the monetary system.
Franz Josef Allmayer: Yes, it’s a monetary system that is owned and directed by the people who comprise it to the benefit of all. Blockchain technology allows us to reimagine the very foundations of our current economic models for the first time in human history. The dialectics here are centralization versus decentralization; scarcity versus abundance; degeneration versus regeneration; fragmentation versus integrity.
For example: “Investments” cannot be considered as such, if they negatively impact the systemic integrity of the biosphere that we collectively share. Investments supporting and accelerating the adoption of regenerative practices that are currently lost in market failure, require an economy that reflects their true value. Capital needs to be measured and understood in its full dimension in order to include all forms of capital and not be myopically reduced to include only financial capital.
For this reason, the majority of Seeds are not for sale. They need to be earned through contributions, co-creation, and alliances. For the first year, Seeds are designed to increase in value with adoption. By giving this value to the people dedicated to regenerating the world, we are shaping a financial system that restores the value and modalities of these multiple forms of capital.
SEEDS launched globally this week. What are your future expectations?
Franz Josef Allmayer: In the near future, I see us living and thriving in globally regenerative cultures and societies. This shift is not limited to cities but has a rural renaissance at the very core of its foundation. The well-being economies that are spreading roots and sprouting won’t be limited by geopolitics but will be shaped by a shared sense of responsibility towards the biosphere as a whole. What now counts is that each of us takes personal responsibility for the global shift we are collectively part of, uniting all these impulses into a breakthrough towards genuine sustainability, freedom, and peace.
Franz Josef Allmayer is a universal citizen with roots between Austria and Guatemala. These contrasting yet complementary perspectives allowed him to question existing cultural paradigms built on scarcity from an early age. Dedication to the fields of innovation and global development has enabled Franz to gather transdisciplinary cross-sectoral experience working with international organizations, governments, the private sector, NGOs, and academia.
Franz Josef is the founder of Integrity.Earth, an international organization headquartered in Liechtenstein specializing in sustaining programs of regenerative development through community empowerment, geared towards restoring large-scale ecological corridors and addressing the root causes of the challenges of today. He is a core member of Hypha DAO, the holocratic, decentralized, autonomous organization facilitating the emergence of SEEDS, where he serves as the Lead Ambassador. An avid explorer he has visited 77 countries, where he has formed a solid network of collaborators. In his free time, you will encounter Franz Josef finding inspiration in nature, climbing volcanoes, and exchanging with leaders across multiple disciplines.