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“Financial Guidelines”
by the Auroville Cooperative
September 1981
Financial Guidelines by Auroville Collective 1981.jpg
PDF (3 pages)
  “Towards a spiritualised economy”
by Kireet Joshi
Auroville Today, Oct. 1999
AVToday 1999.10 - Towards a spiritualised economy; Basic needs.jpg
PDF (3 pages)
  “A brief history of Auroville's economy”
by Judith
Auroville Today, Apr. 2001
AVToday 2001.04 - A brief history of Aurovilles Economy.jpg
PDF (1 page)
  “Beyond capitalism and socialism”
by Jean-Yves
Auroville Today, Apr. 2001
AVToday 2001.04 - Beyond capitalism and socialism.jpg
PDF (1 page)

(Gilles G.:) “Mother's vision of economy did not evolve, it was always clear; the question was when, where and how to manifest it.”[1]

Auroville's economic experiments and milestones[2]

1968-75 Prosperity (SAS) in Pondicherry The Mother Basic maintenance: Rs. 125 per adult, Rs. 75 per child. Plus soap, clothes and any item of basic necessity. This was supported and managed by the Sri Aurobindo Society (SAS).
1973 First attempt at AV Central Food distribution Jocelyn & Barbara Central food distribution begins in the old Amphitheatre workshop, after the first ever AV general meeting early September in which calls for self-sufficiency were made due to funds scarcity.
Feb 28, 1974 Pour Tous / For All Clare started and ran it with Surbhi up to early 1975. Christine ran it from 1975 to 1985. Main objective: An effort towards suppression of exchange of money within Auroville. Another objective towards dealing differently with local workers did not materialize. The food distribution soon became centralized at Pour Tous. Individual and community baskets sent through PT bullock-cart.
1976-78 Pour Tous Fund Jocelyn's proposal. Initially Alain B. and Yusuf, later (mid-77) Charlie, Michael T. join the PT Fund team. Common account created for Bakery, Laundry, Pour Tous and the big kitchens (Aspiration and Center). Launched on January 1, 1976 with units/services, communities and individual accounts. SAS (Navajata) promised to give prosperity money through PT Fund but no funds came. PT Fund managers appealed to Aurovilians, AV Centers and friends. Good response. Auroville becomes de facto financially independent. End 1976: experiment of doing away with minuses and Rs. 125 limit. Not sustainable. Problem of increasing deficits.
Nov. 1978-85 Envelopes system Proposed by Paul (Maroma) in meeting. Envelopes group meets every Friday. Variable membership. Open meeting. Adapted from Mother's method. Various envelopes to receive and specify destination of funds. In 1980 there were 12 envelopes: Food co-op, Milk co-op, Cash food, Market, Food investment, Community maintenance, Services (PT, Bakery, Abri, etc.), Children, Green work, Matrimandir, Personal (sundries, clothing, etc.), Unspecified.
1982-83 Maintenance system Economic survey / conclusion: inadequate financial resources. No clear decision about next move. Maintenance and work link system begins. Individualized baskets with specific orders. (Great disparities.) More and more maintenances directly taken from commercial units.
Sept. 1988 Auroville Foundation Act Auroville Foundation Act. A legal basis for Auroville is created.
1988-89 Auroville Board of Commerce (ABC) Formation of the Auroville Board of Commerce (ABC) for better coordination between commercial units and legal/financial/accounting advices.
1989 Central Fund Creation of the Central Fund. Beginning of computerization of accounts. Rs. 200 monthly voluntary contribution
1991 Financial Service Otto Opening of the Financial Service in Aspiration near Pour Tous Store.
1996 Solar Kitchen Gilles and Suhasini Opening of the Solar Kitchen, a major step of developing the in-kind economy.
1997 FAMC Rules of the Foundation required the formation of a Funds and Assets Management Committee (FAMC) which was formed as a representative body of Auroville.
1999-2002 Circles Experiment Circles experiment. Many residents formed circles aiming at increased sharing of resources. It proved unsustainable despite partial support from the Central Fund.
2006 PTDC Gilles and Suhasini Pour Tous Distribution Centre opens. It works like a cooperative. Over 1000 participants. Only for Aurovilians and Newcomers. An effort towards simplicity and avoidance of consumerism.

See also