Skip to the content

‘Time eases all things’: a critical study of how time banks attempt to use time-based currency to alleviate Social Exclusion

Wilson, JV 2015, ‘Time eases all things’: a critical study of how time banks attempt to use time-based currency to alleviate Social Exclusion , PhD thesis, University of Salford.

Download (886kB) | Preview


This thesis explores the tension between the radical aims of time banks and their position within the State-led third sector. It does this by theorising the concepts and manifestations of social exclusion and the third sector, and the existing time bank literature. Firstly a critical realist stance is taken to define social exclusion as a structural problem, by utilising a Marxist Feminist position and Levitas’ analysis of government responses to social exclusion. Time banks intend to address social exclusion through social capital however, in scrutinising Putnam and Bourdieu’s theories it is argued that interventions which focus on non-monetary forms of capital maintain the status-quo of social exclusion. Secondly, it is argued that a process of ‘third sectorisation’ has occurred which neutralises what Gramsci proposed as the counter-hegemonic activity of civil society, by bringing it within the neoliberal structure of government. It is contended that this evidences Foucault’s theory of governmentality, whereby values are superseded by economic rationales. The existing literature fails to explore the tension between the radical potential of time banks to challenge structural inequalities by aiming to alter conceptions of work through a communistic time-based currency, and their potential to maintain social exclusion via their focus on social capital. By analysing observational and interview data from 12 months within a time bank, this thesis presents an in-depth examination of how a time bank works to depoliticise counter-hegemonic activity and maintain social exclusion. It is argued that time banks’ position within the third sector moulds them into an extension of the neoliberal state in which the activities of civil society are exploited to build resilience rather than resistance to the current structure in which social exclusion exists. The conclusion demonstrates the need to critically examine radical interventions aimed at alleviating social exclusion when they work within the third sector.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Schools: Schools > School of Nursing, Midwifery, Social Work & Social Sciences > Centre for Nursing, Midwifery, Social Work & Social Sciences Research
Funders: University of Salford
Depositing User: JV Wilson
Date Deposited: 17 Jun 2016 10:30
Last Modified: 17 Jun 2016 10:30

Actions (login required)

Edit record (repository staff only) Edit record (repository staff only)


Downloads per month over past year