Identifying Applications for Blockchain to Transform Businesses and Competitiveness
The technology that will enable, secure and formalize the digital relationships shaping the future of enterprise, government and the global economy has arrived — Blockchain. The first generation of the digital revolution brought us the Internet of Information. The second generation—powered by blockchain technology—is bringing us the Internet of Value: a new, distributed platform that can help us create the digital relationships that will reshape the world of business and transform the old order of human affairs for the better.
In the first best-selling book about the blockchain revolution, Don Tapscott and Alex Tapscott argued that blockchain technology will transform financial services, the deep architecture of the corporation, animate the Internet of Things, recast the role of government, revamp our content industries, and solve important problems like the security of organizations and the privacy of individuals. New blockchain-based business models will transform most industries, and big disruptors may themselves become disrupted.
It’s now time to take the next step and conduct deep research into killer applications — identifying the most important opportunities for blockchain in business and government and drawing the roadmap for how to get there.
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This technology holds the potential to make financial markets radically more efficient, secure, inclusive and transparent. All eight core functions ( See Appendix 1) of financial intermediaries are poised to be transformed, and it is incumbent on the industry’s leaders and new-entrants alike to understand how to harness blockchain technology.
RETAIL & Consumer Goods
During the first generation of the Internet, retailers collected consumer data to drive business. In the second generation, the world of big data in retail is giving way to the world of bigger, smaller, and more personalized data — with informed consent. How can companies that sell to consumers survive and thrive in this new world?
media & rights OWNERSHIP
Today, content creators do not receive their fair share of the value they create as the system for managing IP rights is fundamentally broken. With blockchain-enabled media, all of a sudden we live in a world where something digital, by being unique, can be traded as digital information of value.
TECHNOLOGY AND IOT
By some estimates, within a few years there will be trillions of internet-connected devices doing everything from driving us around to monitoring our health, from heating our homes to organizing our affairs. With a distributed application, you could have a true sharing economy model where those who create value are fairly compensated for the value they create.
The healthcare system in many countries is under extreme strain, where every stakeholder, from healthcare providers to insurers, drug companies and most of all patients, all suffer as a result. The invention of blockchain means we can move beyond the simple custodianship of a database, and turn our energies to how we use databases, focusing more on managing a system of record.
government and democracy
Blockchain presents governments with four huge opportunities. The first is to harness this technology to rewire the economy for innovation. Government should do far more at less cost, with more input from citizens.What are the implications of blockchain for the democratic process, and how can we help overcome the crisis of legitimacy of democratic institutions?
With blockchain, manufacturing-intensive industries can give rise to planetary ecosystems for sourcing, designing, and building physical goods, marking a new phase of peer production. Blockchains are allowing for the coupling of the flow of goods and money. Some of the motivation for this coupling is deep tier financing. Here, the visibility and transparency in a supply chain extends through the manufacturing process from the financiers to the consumers.
Energy & power distribution
Blockchain technology allows us to rethink how we produce, distribute, trade and store energy. Our existing energy system is based on an industrial age model where large power stations generate electricity and then sell it through a regulated utility to a captive market. In a blockchain-powered environment, individuals who generate power in excess of their needs can sell it peer-to-peer for market rates to the closest buyer or best bid. Blockchain could foster massive liquid global markets for carbon credits, enabling any government, company, institution or even individual to be a participant, reaping rewards for reducing their footprint.