Each week we ask the buidlers in the blockchain and cryptocurrency sector for their thoughts on the industry… and we throw in a few random zingers to keep them on their toes!
This week our 6 Questions go to Sheila Warren, head of blockchain and DLT at the World Economic Forum.
Sheila serves on the executive committee of the World Economic Forum and the leadership team of its Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution, working with public-, private- and third-sector actors around the world to advance the adoption of new technologies in the global public interest. She currently focuses on blockchain, digital assets, data policy and the integration of new technologies with new data governance models.
Previously, Sheila was on the executive team at social enterprise TechSoup, built NGOsource — a service that focuses on international grant-making — and was a Wall Street lawyer. She is on the boards of the ACLU of Northern California and the Equal Justice Society, and she advises various groups, including ones focused on blockchain technology, digital currency and data ethics.
1 — If the world is getting a new currency, will it be led by CBDCs, a permissionless blockchain like Bitcoin, or a permissioned chain such as Libra?
It all depends on what problem the new form of currency is addressing. This whole “one ring to rule them all” mentality makes no sense to me; these things serve different purposes, often deliberately, and there is room for all of them! As far as what will lead, I guess I’d ask lead whom? I’m mostly interested in opportunities for financial inclusion, and any of these could potentially play a role in addressing the needs of the un/underbanked. If we’re not solving actual problems, what is the point of any of this?
2 — Which countries are doing the most to support blockchain – and which ones will be left behind?
We’re seeing the most innovation in smaller and/or frontier economies and, of course, China. Any country that is not…