New Report: World Economic Forum Says Blockchain Lives up to the Hype

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The World Economic Forum, best known for its annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland, includes various members of the global financial elite,  stated in a 130 page report released Friday that their findings suggest Blockchain Technology – also known as Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) – has the potential to ‘live-up to the hype’ and reshape financial services, but  it will require careful collaboration with other emerging technologies, regulators, incumbents and additional stakeholders to be successful.

The study, which was based on a year of research and discussions with financial institutions around the world, notes that 80 per cent of banks are expected to start these projects in 2017 and that more than 90 central banks are currently discussing the use of the technology.

1wef3“Rather than to stay at the margins of the finance industry Blockchain will become the beating heart of it,” the head of financial services industries at the World Economic Forum, Giancarlo Bruno, said in a statement released with the report.

1wefFrom the report:

“DLT has great potential to drive simplicity and efficiency through the establishment of new financial services infrastructure and processes DLT is not a panacea; instead it should be viewed as one of many technologies that will form the foundation of next-generation financial services infrastructure.

Applications of DLT will differ by use case, each leveraging the technology in different ways for a diverse range of benefits.

Digital Identity is a critical enabler to broaden applications to new verticals; Digital Fiat (legal tender), along with other emerging capabilities, has the ability to amplify benefits.

The most impactful DLT applications will require deep collaboration between incumbents, innovators and regulators, adding complexity and delaying implementation. New financial services infrastructure built on DLT will redraw processes and call into question orthodoxies that are foundational to today’s business models.”

“The most impactful distributed ledger technology applications will require deep collaboration between incumbents, innovators and regulators, adding complexity and delaying implementation.”

1wef2This report, says the New York Times, is a huge step toward legitimizing the technology behind bitcoin in the financial mainstream:

The World Economic Forum report notes that most developments are likely to happen behind the scenes. So consumers won’t see the changes to infrastructure, but the changes could lead to cheaper and faster financial services. The report says the technology could help improve both mainstream transactions, like global payments and stock trading, and lesser-known areas like trade finance and contingent convertible bonds.

The 130-page report from the forum is the product of a year of research and five gatherings of executives from several major institutions, including JPMorgan Chase, Visa, MasterCard and BlackRock.

 

 

About Richard Kastelein

Founder, Publisher and Editor in Chief of industry leading online publication, Blockchain News and co-founder and director at Blockchain Partners in London/Amsterdam/NYC. Kastelein is also an advisor with a number Blockchain startups doing ICOs including Humaniq.co where hs is interim CMO, DECENT.ch, Inchain, Chronobank, eGaas and others. He is regarded as one of the top journalists by the Blockchain and fintech communities – as is evident by his entry in the Top 150 Fintech journalists online and in the top 10 of the Blockchain Top 100 List.

As a prominent keynote presenter, he has spoken on Blockchain at events in Gdansk, Amsterdam, Minsk, Dubai, Antwerp, Eindhoven, Bucharest, Nairobi, Tel Aviv, Manchester, Brussels, Barcelona etc, where he helped spread the cause for Blockchain technology and cryptocurrency and, consequently, has built a notable network in the scene.

He’s also a director of a Dutch foundation called The Hackitarians and has run innovation events in London, San Francisco, Berlin, Amsterdam and other cities around the world on topics such Blockchain, Health, Energy, Internet of Things, AI etc.

In 2013, the European Commission appointed him as an expert for overseeing financing for emerging startups as a part of the European Commission’s 90 billion euro Horizon 2020 project, created in Brussels to promote innovation as a driving force of job creation and business ventures across Europe. He has also worked as an external expert for Innovate UK since 2012, judging startups for the UK government.

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