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Stefan Hopf at the All Member Summit of the BRI: “The legislative loses connection”

Stefan Hopf at the All Member Summit of the BRI: “The legislative loses connection”

In mid-June our blockchain expert Stefan Hopf traveled to New York to attend the All Member Summit of the Blockchain Research Institute. The both state- and company-sponsored BRI supports more than 70 blockchain projects across multiple industries and is considered one of the leading think tanks in the field. Besides his job at Nunatak, Stefan has been working there as a researcher since May 2017. At the Summit he presented his whitepaper “Blockchain: The Emerging Platform for Manufacturing 4.0”. We asked Stefan about his trip to the Big Apple:

Stefan, what are the most important learnings from the event?

When so many international top experts meet to discuss a certain topic, it’s always about the big picture: how blockchain will change the economy and society of tomorrow. Though not exclusively: the summit was also very specifically concerned with the practical application of the technology. It offered an outlook on completely new business perspectives, especially when coupling blockchain with adjacent innovations such as AI and IoT. But as we all know: everything has its downside – the risks of the current developments were also discussed.

What are some of the risks for example?

It is becoming increasingly apparent that legislature is far behind the technological development. Global regulation on blockchain is still in its infancy and individual countries are often pursuing completely different approaches. This is fatal because blockchain, in many regards, knows almost no boundaries. Something has to happen very quickly here, because blockchain technology is much more than just an aspiration for the distant future.

What interesting people did you meet?

It was certainly interesting to meet the Canadian entrepreneurs Don and Alex Tapscott. In various publications they describe how the technology behind Bitcoin is changing not only the financial system, but the whole world. The event also created a bridge to practice. Numerous US companies such as FedEx or Procter & Gamble presented their pilot projects and for other blockchain pioneers, such as IBM, SAP, Accenture and Tencent, the summit was an obligatory visit as well. Furthermore professional exchange and networking were a part of it – with such a high-profile cast it is always inspiring and offers real added value.

Briefly describe what your lecture was about:

It is not at all easy to describe this in brief – after all, it is a highly complex topic. Essentially it was about the possible application of blockchain in production and in supply chains. I presented new research findings and showed how the technology can be used to improve cross-company data exchange and automate business processes.

How was the atmosphere in comparison to German events?

As often in the US, things were much more relaxed than at comparable events in Europe. The discussions were more open and less dogmatic.

The development of blockchain in the US vs. Germany: What are the differences and what are the similarities?

A major difference is that the US as a whole is more welcoming to experimentation and faster in practical application. The one thing I see in common is the great general interest in blockchain on the part of the industry.

Was there anything else noteworthy?

The talks with Chinese and Indian industry representatives made one thing clear: topics such as blockchain are picked up and driven forward with absolute determination. We in Europe need to keep up with the pace so that we do not fall behind.

Thank you, Stefan, for sharing your impressions.

VZB Fireside Chat with Robert Jacobi: Grasp Blockchain in 15 Minutes

VZB Fireside Chat with Robert Jacobi: Grasp Blockchain in 15 Minutes

Sometimes it just helps to talk faster – up the speech tempo from Allegro to Presto at a short notice, especially when a highly complex, multi-facetted topic demands clarification in only 15 minutes. Do it in a way where even non-experts understand what it is all about and reach a real “aha” moment.

At the recent VZB Fireside Chat, our Managing Director, Robert Jacobi was asked to do exactly that. The name Fireside Chat is a bit misleading: no flickering flames were needed on this sunny summer day. The attendees were instead lured to the rooftop terrace of the Donner & Reuschel bank building to enjoy a fantastic view of Munich’s skyline – the ideal backdrop for our co-founder to accept this 15 minute challenge.

In an entertaining tour d’horizon, Robert Jacobi gave the attendees, most of whom are managers of Bavarian publishing houses, a practical insight into one of the most discussed technology topics today: blockchain, with an emphasis on its uses in the media industry. He underlined the fact that the technology is no longer an idea for the distant future, but rather an already determining factor in many companies’ plans across various industries… at least internationally.

A marketplace such as Civil for example could fundamentally change the rules of the game in journalism because blockchain offers new, direct compensation models for high quality journalistic content – just outside the traditional publishing structures. The platform Adchain already enables the purchasing, tracking and billing of ad impressions via a blockchain ledger. In this instance blockchain prevents ad fraud and ensures transparency to the performance contribution of all intermediaries. The NYIAX ad trading marketplace works in a similar sense and provides the same benefits.

Don’t be fooled, blockchain can do much more than legally transacting secure and transparent contracts. It has the potential to take digital advertising to a whole new level. In the future, the Basic Attention Token could play a key role. It monetarily rewards users for their attention with BAT tokens, in return, the technology enables a group-specific approach targeting… A win-win situation, and thus, an ideal starting point for a rapid breakthrough of blockchain technology in this segment.