How the blockchain could weaken the role of Central authorities

According to the working report of the Organization for economic cooperation and development (OECD), the modern official should clearly understand what the technology of the blockchain and what it is not.

In the absence of such understanding, the potential of technology in the field of public administration is misunderstood or even ignored, while technology can significantly reduce costs, provide transparency, to facilitate the fight against fraud and errors, and in the future to turn the authorities of the Central link of the transaction platform providers of decentralized services. According to the OECD report, the fundamental backlog of Russia in this direction no.

Today, as a guarantor of a third party in carrying out various transactions are banks and government agencies, making them the main point of vulnerability in case of emergencies. The OECD believe that the use of decentralized models can solve this problem. The technology of the blockchain is capable of in the first place significantly reduce the costs associated with paper documents and also to increase the level of transparency, which in turn will help to combat fraud. However, the main obstacle hindering the officials to actively develop this technology, continue to be issues related to technical complexity, risks, safety and appropriateness of using technology. Along with this, created the hype over this technology can greatly exaggerate the capabilities of its real and pragmatic use.

The report also describes details of a number of blockchain experiments carried out by the authorities of different countries: Ghana, USA, Sweden, Denmark, Mexico and Singapore. However, this list has not got none of the Russian projects, while the Federal and regional authorities have already launched a number of pilots. So, in 2017, a group of Russian banks under the auspices of the Central Bank started testing financial platform «Mastercam», Rosreestr is experimenting with the creation of the blockchain registries of real estate, the Agency plans to use the technology to protect intellectual property rights. In addition, the government are considering the use of technology to account for pension assets, provision of medicines to beneficiaries and mortgages.

The OECD believes that the scope of technology of the blockchain limit the following: issues related to data protection and privacy, permanence (not allowing to correct information in databases), high energy consumption and low-speed transactions in a separate blockchain systems.

According to the OECD, to date, governments in at least 46 countries have started or preparing to launch more than 200 different blockchain projects. In the top 10 by popularity includes a variety of research projects (42), projects in the field of identification (ID, license, 25), personal data (medical, financial, 25), economic development (24), financial services and market infrastructure (20), registers of real estate (19) digital currency issued by Central banks (18); the project to mainstream benefits and compensations (13), compliance and reporting (12) and standardization (12). Key sectors of application of technology are public services (173), financial services (73), the Internet of things (26), health care (23), real estate (22), supply chain (19), energy (13) transportation (13), education (8) Telecom (4). If we are to combine projects from different areas, it can improve the overall effectiveness of such initiatives and facilitate collaboration between departments: for example, the blockchain-the registry intended for distribution of social benefits may be automatically associated with the registry identification of citizens and other registers confirming their right to payment.

In addition, governments of different countries aim to attract to participate in the project society and the private sector and form public-private projects. One reason for this is the lack of qualified knowledge of the authorities. According to the former Minister of digitalization of France Axel Lemaire to design their own projects, the government would have to hire professionals for the same money that the private company that «is not possible».

In addition, as emphasized in the OECD, to ensure the efficiency and security of the blockchain of the initiatives of the authorities is critical to maintain at least a basic level of knowledge in this area. For example, Dubai authorities have organized courses in data management for 14 thousand officials. To facilitate cooperation have also launched a number of corporations platform «blockchain as a service». Also as a source of qualified personnel needed to attract different universities and research centers to assess the potential of new technologies, to create experimental centers and centers for knowledge sharing. Over time, the technology of the blockchain is able to weaken the role of the Central authorities, turning them into platform providers of decentralized services.

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