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The Blockchain as a New Architecture of Trust

  • MIT Media Lab 20 Ames Street, E15-359 Cambridge, MA 02139 (map)

A decade after the publication of the Bitcoin whitepaper, blockchain and cryptocurrencies remain wildly misunderstood. In an era when conventional trust is collapsing, the blockchain offers a set of extraordinary new opportunities…but also creates serious new risks. Wharton professor Kevin Werbach, author of the new book, The Blockchain and the New Architecture of Trust, offers a balanced analysis of blockchain’s true potential, as well as its limitations and what it will take to overcome them. He maps out the often-confusing landscape, and shows how the path to trustworthy blockchains and cryptoassets surprisingly runs through law, regulation, and governance.

Kevin Werbach is professor of Legal Studies and Business Ethics at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. A world-renowned expert on emerging technology, he examines business and policy implications of developments such as broadband, big data, gamification, and blockchain. Werbach served on the Obama Administration’s Presidential Transition Team, founded the Supernova Group (a technology conference and consulting firm), helped develop the U.S. government’s approach to internet policy during the Clinton Administration, and created one of the most successful massive open online courses, with over 450,000 enrollments. His books include For the Win: How Game Thinking Can Revolutionize Your Business and the forthcoming The Blockchain and the New Architecture of Trust.