By: John Barry and John Proops
Local Exchange Trading Systems (LETS), the subject of this text, is a novel and interesting social phenomenon which seems to constitute a more ecologically rational and socially inclusive form of economic activity. LETS is a system for exchanging goods and services without the use of formal, legal tender. The authors examine LETS in detail, and in particular they discuss whether LETS can be viewed as an aspect of the "greening" of citizenship, with the potential to contribute to the transition to, and maintenance of, a more sustainable society. They describe the part LETS can play in raising environmental awareness; offering more sustainable practices of production and consumption; and helping to create in the community the preconditions for sustainability. In the study, the authors use Q methodology - a qualitative methodology for the systematic study of subjectivity and shared discourses - and at the same time they evaluate its usefulness for social scientific environmental research.
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