Publications and Research

Document Type

Working Paper

Publication Date

Winter 12-21-2019


This short paper, written in three different sections, explores how a cryptocurrency’s issuance and network effects could fund higher education. Synthesizing research from the Bronx Community College Cryptocurrency Research Lab, Bernard Lietaer’s notion of creating money for the needs of society, lessons learned by Galia Benartzi and the Hearts Project, and an exploration of how communities coalesce around open-source cryptocurrency projects, the authors provide an overview of the problem of funding higher education, the ways in which money that is needed could be created, and the key components to building a highly effective developer community. These three distinct yet vitally interconnected facets lay the groundwork for the Free Education Project. Lastly, based on the models herein, this paper calls for academics, entrepreneurs, and financial professionals to work together in ways that facilitate and generate the needed capital, built outside of taxation, to fund the noble purposes of education writ large.


An earlier version of this work is available at



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