Mission & Values


The Modern Money Network serves to promote public understanding of money and finance through education, discussion and scholarship.


1. Community

To identify, bring together, and provide a shared space for students, scholars, professionals and members of the public to discuss, debate and refine ideas about money;

2. Knowledge

To collect, organize and present cutting-edge scholarship and learning materials related to monetary issues in an accessible and rigorous way; and

3. Justice

To build the capacity of affiliated individuals, institutions and networks to solve monetary and financial problems.


MMN members approach macroeconomic issues as legal realists. Working from the bottom upward, we keep two critical questions in mind: 1) “What is money?” which is everywhere and always a question of legal design and interpretation, and 2) “How does money work?” In the sense of how does it pool, ebb, and flow between and through institutions and sectors of the economy from an operational perspective.

We are committed to:

  • The creation and improvement of monetary and financial institutions governed by the public and directed in support of public purpose.
  • The universal, enforceable and inalienable right of every person to participate in economic life in a manner consistent with basic principles of justice, fairness, equality and dignity.
  • The security of individuals, families and communities, the development of autonomous, non-state entities and the flourishing of civil society as critical components of economic freedom.
  • Free speech, free debate, free information, free culture and a free internet as critical components of intellectual freedom.
  • Ecological sustainability.

Our seminars and curricula frequently promote the following insights:

  • The U.S. government, along with other countries with fiat currencies and floating exchange rates, cannot “go broke.” That is, such governments face price stability constraints, but not solvency constraints per se.
  • Thus, government budgets are not analogous to household or business budgets. There is no macroeconomic reason for current austerity measures. The real debt crisis is in the private sector.
  • The U.S. government can afford to guarantee jobs for every citizen, simultaneously promoting full employment and price stability. Implementation of this policy is especially crucial for youth, women, and people of color.
  • The financial system is hierarchical, legally elastic, and exists as a public-private hybrid. It is also endemically unstable. These qualities are important for understanding the distribution of risk and the political economy of bailouts in the context of financial crises.