As the Euro celebrates its 20th anniversary, the European Central Bank (ECB) investigates the possibility of creating a "digital euro" in addition to the coins and notes that we still use, but less and less, in our daily transactions. Unlike bank cards and other payment systems, the digital euro would be a "central bank digital currency", i.e. a currency issued and guaranteed directly by the ECB, accessible and usable by all.
Such an innovation could offer many opportunities for our societies and for the euro itself, challenged as it is by many private digital currency projects. But how can we seize these opportunities and put the digital euro to work for the benefit of society and the economy as a whole, in particular to promote objectives of social inclusion and ecological transition?
To explore these issues, the Veblen Institute is setting up a Digital Euro Watch.
The aim of the Observatory is to follow experiments and policy debates about the digital euro, but above all to propose how the central bank digital currency could be used to renew monetary policies, their objectives and their management methods.
We believe that the future digital euro must be considered as a public good. It could give the public access to central bank money in digital form, currently restricted to banking and financial actors. It could make our payment systems more inclusive and less expensive for the poorest parts of the population. It could also be used to implement new economic, social or environmental policies by enabling monetary transfers to all European citizens. Finally, it could reinforce the legitimacy of the single currency by putting it more at the service of the objectives shared by European citizens.
The Observatory is led by:
– Tristan Dissaux, research fellow at the Veblen Institute, researcher at Université Libre de Bruxelles (Belgium)
– Jézabel Couppey-Soubeyran, scientific advisor to the Veblen Institute, associated professor at Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne and Paris School of Economics,
– Wojtek Kalinowski, co-Director of the Veblen Institute for Economic Reforms