October 19-21, 2018
Berlin, Germany

Saraswathi Subbaraman

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Saraswathi is an artist and designer working at the intersection of technology and culture. She currently works as the art director of Ethereal Summit, and a project coordinator and design lead for a distributed basic income protocol, Circles. Saraswathi received a masters from ITP NYU, and most recently has shown work at the Bauhaus Archiv in Berlin, through Basic Income Berlin Lab.

Workshop with Sarah Friend

Creative Economics and Networked Abundance

All of the networks we hope to build sit atop or are funded within a financial system that was designed neither for us, nor by us. There are many cases where what is valued by mainstream capitalism aligns poorly with our values, and fails to sustain our communities and infrastructure.

Blockchains promise on the surface to allow for p2p financial networks, but in practice they've disproportionately rewarded a tech-elite of early adopters. Circles is a proposal to build a Universal Basic Income on the blockchain, and hopes to offer an alternative that is flat, truly p2p, and does not encourage speculation or hoarding. If we could imagine a truly p2p financial system, what new sets of values could emerge?

We will lead workshop participants through a speculative/imaginative exercise of what the economy could look like:

  • If care work was valued?
  • If it was impossible to hoard money?
  • If sustainability was rewarded?

We'll invite participants to write short fiction, draw pictures and diagrams, or enact small skits, exploring how alternate theories of value could sustain our networks and restructure our communities.

Additional information