Blockchain first rose to prominence as the digital engine of the Bitcoin currency. Blockchain’s ability to record data such as transactions, contracts and agreements and have them verified by users of the distributed ledger means that the technology has the potential to disrupt in a range of industries such as financial services, telecoms, legal, manufacturing, and transportation.
The financial services industry is expected to be profoundly impacted by blockchain given its ability to speed up transactions and lower their costs. Large financial institutions are evaluating the technology to determine how it can be used to execute different types of transactions. There are also several hundred blockchain start-ups globally and many of them are seeking and securing partnerships with large organisations. The Internet of Things could also establish a key role for blockchain. A distributed ledger could be used to manage the big data associated with IoT, such as assigning digital signatures to data at each stage of a transaction between connected devices. Furthermore, blockchain’s distributed nature makes it difficult to hack so it could provide the security and transparency that the IoT needs. Blockchain can also be used in smart contracts, such as to facilitate the transfer of ownership of an asset from one party to another.
This session will explore where and how blockchain is expected to have impact, and what challenges need to be addressed for the technology to realise.
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Dave Birch, Director, Innovation, Consult Hyperion
Ryan Shea, Co-Founder, Blockstack Labs
Melanie Shapiro, Founder & CEO, Case
Kelly Olson, Director, Distributed Ledger Technology, Intel
Diego Gutiérrez Zaldívar, President, Bitcoin Argentina & CEO, RSK Labs
Julio Faura, Head of R&D & Innovation, Santander