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Meta-Commerce aims to identify and structure the critical questions underlying the long-term viability of the financial system.

Inspired by David Hilbert's 23 questions project of 1900, the Meta-Commerce programme brings together financial experts across a range of disciplines with a view to producing a framework of questions in order to prioritise future research and direct action.

By helping to identify a set of core questions that link economics, finance and society, and that need solving in order to have a working financial system, Meta-Commerce maps the road to Long Finance and contributes to its overarching goals - to expand frontiers, change systems, deliver services and build communities.


Three clear issues resonate through our various research areas and questions:

  • Fairness across different cultures — does fairness as a concept increase as wealth increases and, if not, what other organising principles for financial services could create desirable outcomes?
  • Trust across different cultures — what creates and destroys trust, where?
  • Value across cultures and time — what is the dynamic between value and price (which could be an expression of long-term and short-term concerns), and is value always higher than price?

Interlinking all three issues and money is the role of "credit creation in the modern economy". Long Finance seeks funding to develop a clear exposition of the choices society faces, the pros and cons of each choice, and a narrowing down to some probable outcomes – with some of the possible avenues being:

  • Leverage as usual — striving to return to ‘normal’;
  • No leverage — removing the ability of banks to create money, leaving overall levels of credit in government;
  • Strict leverage — setting some firm level of banking leverage, e.g. 1:1 or 8:1, as well as some overall leverage level in society – what mechanisms might exist to determine such;
  • ‘Optimal’ leverage — attempting to find some form of equation or indicator that could be used as a measure and target (cognizant of Goodhart’s Law);

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Research Papers

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