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Blockchain Research Institute Report Calls for Crypto Regulation Clarity

“Regulators would be wise to avoid the chainsaw when microsurgery could do” when it comes to blockchain technology, says author Don Tapscott.

Tapscott, the co-founder and executive director of the Blockchain Research Institute (BRI) – a multi-million dollar global blockchain think tank – published a report Wednesday calling for increased regulatory clarity on blockchain and cryptocurrencies. The report also recounts the takeaways from a roundtable discussion held in May on cryptocurrency regulation.

The report identifies the four “core issues” of regulatory oversight as being a lack of regulatory clarity, obsolete statutes, a lack of dialogue between both regulators and other stakeholders, as well as, financial service providers and blockchain entrepreneurs.

The report does caution a clear “Canadian slant,” given that the majority of the near 70 participants were from Canada.

This would explain why some of the major takeaway items are explicitly geared towards a Canadian audience, with one such action item being “establish a national regulator in Canada” highlighting the lack of a central securities regulatory authority in the country.

Other such recommendations in the report include forming action committees, encouraging special interest groups and creating clearer distinctions between different types of cryptocurrencies.

All of these recommendations, however, seem to support the sentiment for a greater degree of clarity when it comes to blockchain technology, not just with government officials but with the broader public as well.

Tapscott explains:

“The new oil of the digital age is data…We need to help educate the public to distinguish a cryptocurrency from the many amazing results that people are achieving with blockchain, and what they might do with a self sovereign identity secured on a distributed ledger”

Ongoing research by BRI on the impact of blockchain technology to society is supported by leading corporations and government agencies such as Microsoft, IBM, the Bank of Canada and more recently, Salesforce.

In February, it was reported that BRI would be taking on a new project with one of India’s leading tech industry organizations to help developers in the country learn more about the use cases of blockchain technology and spur forth stronger digital economies.

Image via Shutterstock

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Salesforce Among 12 New Members to Join Blockchain Research Institute

Cloud computing company Salesforce is among twelve new members to the Blockchain Research Institute (BRI), the multi-million dollar global blockchain think tank announced on Tuesday.

Devoted to the study of blockchain strategies, applications and obstacles to implementation, the Institute already boasts the membership of government entities, major tech companies, financial industry players and global corporations such as Microsoft, IBM, the Bank of Canada and PepsiCo.

“As with other disruptive technologies, blockchain requires deep study from a variety of perspectives to understand its broader implications,” Peter Schwartz, senior vice president of strategic planning at Salesforce, said in a statement.

Other new members include Austrian banking group Raiffeisen Bank International, Switzerland-based BPC Banking Technologies, brand manager VIKTRE and public relations firm Navigator Limited. Blockchain startups Aion, Decental, Polymath, Shyft Network and Sweetbridge have also joined the Institute.

Institute co-founder and executive chairman Don Tapscott explained:

“Like our corporate and government members, these companies are at very different stages of their blockchain transformations. We can foster more innovation through collaboration by creating a network of builders in the blockchain space alongside leaders in enterprise and government.”

Founded in 2017, BRI announced in February that it was partnering with India’s National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM), one of the country’s leading tech organizations, to promote the digital economy.

Image Credit: Johnathan Weiss/Shutterstock

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India Teams with Canadian Blockchain Institute for Digital Economy Push

One of India’s leading tech industry organizations is partnering with the Blockchain Research Institute (BRI) to help spur a digital economy within the world’s second most-populous nation.

India’s information technology trade organization, the National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM) will work with BRI researchers backed by the Canadian government to help developers learn more about blockchain platforms in preparation for creating and launching tools within the nation.

To that end, the two groups have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) establishing a financial and research partnership. According to media platform INC42, each organization will invest in webinars and other types of seminars whereby researchers within the BRI can share their knowledge using case studies with Indian government departments and other entities.

NASSCOM chairman Raman Roy said that, while he is delighted to launch a research initiative, he understands that encouraging blockchain use in the country will be a long-term effort, rather than “a plug and play we can do tomorrow,” according to the International Data Group’s CIO India.

To this end, the MoU splits the research push into two parts, said BRI’s Don Tapscott. He explained:

“We need to create an awakening in India, showcase the power of blockchain and we can do this by looking at incentives/discounts to organizations who do this. That’s phase one.”

Phase two would build a blockchain institute in India, which will be specifically aimed at helping grow the digital ecosystem in the state of Telengana, according to INC42.

CNN reports that this center would “provide high-end technology capabilities” to the state, as part of the BRI’s push to “build blockchain-based economies around the world.”

Stepping back, these moves would appear to bolster India’s goal of putting electronic health records, land records and digital certificates on a blockchain, as stated by Amitabh Kant, the CEO of the National Institution for Transforming India, a government-run think tank.

Indian flag image via Shutterstock

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