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.

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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.

 

 

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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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