Governance Of Blockchain Systems

Research Overview

Author: Primavera De Filippi, Greg McMullen
Release Date: June 27, 2018

Abstract:

Decentralization, hashing functions, public key cryptography, and smart contracts are advantageous design features of blockchain systems. These require the coordination of multiple and diverse actors with differing incentives—cryptoeconomics—to solve any problems that arise. This research examines the impact of governance on these systems. Specifically, it explores governance needs at three levels of the blockchain stack: the Internet layer, the blockchain layer, and the application layer, including the deployment of decentralized applications (Dapps). De Filippi and McMullen explain the difference between governance by the infrastructure and of the infrastructure. Given the state of the technology, they advocate for a hybrid approach that combines on-chain and off-chain elements rather than a code-only solution to stewardship.

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