The Four Futures of the Blockchain

Last month, I had the opportunity to speak on the future of blockchain and cryptocurrencies. Cryptocurrencies have blossomed from a fringe idea to an over USD $140 billion market capitalization. Initial coin offering – IPOs that issue tokens based on cryptocurrencies – have raised over $1.13 billion USD in the first-half of 2017. Meanwhile, the Chinese Central Bank to Coca-Cola are looking into using the blockchain (the technology behind bitcoin).

Bitcoins in Bali invited me to speak at their weekly in-person event on the future of cryptocurrencies. To help jump start a roundtable discussion, I put forward four distinct visions of the future as a framing device to discuss where blockchain is going and – more importantly – how do we nudge it to towards a better vision of the future.

The four visions I put forward are:

  1. Blockchain Centralization
    Government & Corporations co-opt and “tame” blockchain technologies, crowding out blockchain’s disruptive potenital
  2. Glocal Citizenship
    Crytocurrencies and blockchain technologies fulfill its help create new forms of communities and economic systems
  3. Hyper-Self-Segregation
    Crytocurrencies and blockchain technologies combine with increased global politicalization and self-segregation, allowing ideologically exclusive communities to establish their own identity, economic systems, etc and a local and global level
  4. Blockchained & Repressed
    Perceived or actual threat to governments force governments everywhere to suppress all but the most tightly controlled form of blockchains.

Download the presentation here or see it on SlideShare.

Which visions are the most likely? What do you want to see come true? What other vision of the future of blockchains and crytocurrencies do you want to see?



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