United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD) releases Blockchain Paper on Social Finance

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A recent working paper has just been released by the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD), coined How Can Cryptocurrency and Blockchain Technology Play a Role in Building Social and Solidarity Finance?.

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The paper written by Brett Scott, explores the potential of distributed ledgers to help create a global world order fairer and more sustainable than the current one, and wonders  how Blockchain technology can be harnessed for community empowerment and solidarity-based finance.

The UNRISD is an autonomous research institute within the U.N. system that undertakes multidisciplinary research and policy analysis on the social dimensions of contemporary development issues.

Scott, is an independent researcher and consultant on alternative finance and financial reform and also the author of The Heretic’s Guide to Global Finance: Hacking the Future of Money.

“This paper sketches out the contours of some key issues that social and solidarityfinance practitioners should consider when thinking about cryptocurrency technology. It is intended to provide a primer on the basics of Bitcoin, and to flag up existent narratives on the technology’s potentials and limits.

First, it considers claims made by Bitcoin proponents concerning the positive role Bitcoin can play as a tool of financial inclusion, or as a tool to build new systems of property rights in countries with unstable governance. It also considers technical and political critiques of these claims. Second, the paper looks at the attempts to design new cryptocurrencies—such as Faircoin—based on explicitly cooperative and social justice principles,” writes Scott.

Thirdly he adds that the the paper considers the emergent wave of “blockchain 2.0” innovation, in whichthe underlying “blockchain” technology of Bitcoin is expanded into realms like share issuance and micro-insurance.

The original Bitcoin community made much out of the “trustless” nature of the technology (Miscione and Kavanagh 2015)—the fact that it does not rely on trusted central intermediaries—but newer groups are expanding the vision into one of trust-enabling decentralized cooperatives, or “distributed collaborative organizations”.

Read paper in Full here. 

This article is protected by international copyright laws and is owned by Blockchain News.

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About Richard Kastelein

Founder and publisher of industry publication Blockchain News (EST 2015), a partner at ICO services collective Token.Agency ($750m+ and 90+ ICOs and STOs), director of education company Blockchain Partners (Oracle Partner) – Vancouver native Richard Kastelein is an award-winning publisher, innovation executive and entrepreneur. He sits on the advisory boards of some two dozen Blockchain startups and has written over 1500 articles on Blockchain technology and startups at Blockchain News and has also published pioneering articles on ICOs in Harvard Business Review and Venturebeat. Irish Tech News put him in the top 10 Token Architects in Europe.

Kastelein has an Ad Honorem - Honorary Ph.D. and is Chair Professor of Blockchain at China's first Blockchain University in Nanchang at the Jiangxi Ahead Institute of Software and Technology. In 2018 he was invited to and attended University of Oxford's Saïd Business School for Business Automation 4.0 programme.  Over a half a decade experience judging and rewarding some 1000+ innovation projects as an EU expert for the European Commission's SME Instrument programme as a startup assessor and as a startup judge for the UK government's Innovate UK division.

Kastelein has spoken (keynotes & panels) on Blockchain technology in Amsterdam, Antwerp, Barcelona, Beijing, Brussels, Bucharest, Dubai, Eindhoven, Gdansk, Groningen, the Hague, Helsinki, London (5x), Manchester, Minsk, Nairobi, Nanchang, Prague, San Mateo, San Francisco, Santa Clara (2x), Shanghai, Singapore (3x), Tel Aviv, Utrecht, Venice, Visakhapatnam, Zwolle and Zurich.

He is a Canadian (Dutch/Irish/English/Métis) whose writing career has ranged from the Canadian Native Press (Arctic) to the Caribbean & Europe. He's written occasionally for Harvard Business Review, Wired, Venturebeat, The Guardian and Virgin.com, and his work and ideas have been translated into Dutch, Greek, Polish, German and French. A journalist by trade, an entrepreneur and adventurer at heart, Kastelein's professional career has ranged from political publishing to TV technology, boatbuilding to judging startups, skippering yachts to marketing and more as he's travelled for nearly 30 years as a Canadian expatriate living around the world. In his 20s, he sailed around the world on small yachts and wrote a series of travel articles called, 'The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Seas' travelling by hitching rides on yachts (1989) in major travel and yachting publications. He currently lives in Groningen, Netherlands where he's raising three teenage daughters with his wife and sailing partner, Wieke Beenen.

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