Blockchain: an entangled political economy approach

Allen, D, Berg, C and Novak, M 2018, 'Blockchain: an entangled political economy approach', Journal of Public Finance and Public Choice, vol. 33, no. 2, pp. 105-125.


Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

Title Blockchain: an entangled political economy approach
Author(s) Allen, D
Berg, C
Novak, M
Year 2018
Journal name Journal of Public Finance and Public Choice
Volume number 33
Issue number 2
Start page 105
End page 125
Total pages 21
Publisher Bristol University Press
Abstract This paper incorporates blockchain activities into the broader remit of entangled political economy theory, emphasising economic and other social phenomena as the emergent by-product of human interactions. Blockchains are a digital technology combining peer-to-peer network computing and cryptography to create an immutable decentralised public ledger. The blockchain contrasts vintage ledger technologies, either paper-based or maintained by in-house databases, largely reliant upon hierarchical, third-party trust mechanisms for their maintenance and security. Recent contributions to the blockchain studies literature suggest that the blockchain itself poses as an institutional technology that could challenge existing forms of coordination and governance organised on the basis of vintage ledgers. This proposition has significant implications for the relevance of existing entangled relationships in the economic, social and political domains. Blockchain enables non-territorial 'crypto-secession', not only reducing the costs associated with maintaining ledgers, but radically revising and deconcentrating data-conditioned networks to fundamentally challenge the economic positions of legacy firms and governments. These insights are further illuminated with reference to finance, property and identity cases. Entangled political economy provides a compelling lens through which we can discern the impact of blockchain technology on some of our most important relationships.
Subject Heterodox Economics
Keyword(s) blockchain
finance
entangled political economy
identity
property
DOI - identifier 10.2139/ssrn.3158805
Copyright notice © AESP 2018
ISSN 2515-6918
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