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Report on government applications of blockchain technology

Report on government and democracy applications of the blockchain
A new report has highlighted the increasingly realistic possibility applications value of the ‘blockchain’, to transform government.

The Report by MyungSan Jun in the Journal of open Innovation entitled Blockchain government - a next form of infrastructure for the twenty-first century is available to download in full here.

The blockchain technology is best known for being the underlying infrastructure behind Bitcoin and most (but not all) cryptocurrencies. However, as this report points out, its applications potentially go far beyond disrupting the financial system.
The report highlights that more than 100 blockchain projects created to transform government systems are already underway in more than 30 countries (not including New Zealand according to the reported data).

The report considers what leads countries to rapidly initiate blockchain projects of this nature?

The thesis is that this is because blockchain is “a technology directly related to social organization; Unlike other technologies, a consensus mechanism form[s] the core of blockchain.”

The argument is that blockchain will enable machines and algorithms to in-part take over a crucial element of institutional transparency and accountability – consensus. This may sound a bit scary but it really is not. Currently humans are doing a pretty bad job at consensus, leading to inefficiency, widespread fraud , manipulation and other error. It seems machines could not do much worse.

The report states:
”Traditionally, consensus is not the domain of machines but rather humankind. However, blockchain operates through a consensus algorithm with human intervention; once that consensus is made, it cannot be modified or forged.”

It suggests that blockchain creates “absolute law” that cannot be violated:

“This characteristic of blockchain makes it possible to implement social technology that can replace existing social apparatuses including bureaucracy.”

The report posits that due to the similarity of bureaucracies and the blockchain technology, it is possible and moreover unavoidable to replace bureaucracy with blockchain systems.

It argues both of them 1 are defined by the rules and execute predetermined rules, 2 work as information processing machines for society, and 3 work as trust machines for society.

In conclusion, the report suggests five principles that should be adhered to when we replace bureaucracy with the blockchain system:

1) introducing Blockchain Statute law;
2) transparent disclosure of data and source code;
3) implementing autonomous executing administration;
4) building a governance system based on direct democracy and
5) making Distributed Autonomous Government(DAG).
Read the full report here

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