IBM Requests Government Assistance to Boost Blockchain Adoption

US tech giant IBM reported that the public would need to use assistance from the US government to promote Blockchain adoption in the country. 

25 September, 2018 – Companies and developers that are responsible for researching Blockchain technology are reportedly turning their attention to the US government in a bid to get some help to promote adoption levels. 

IBM Blockchain Report

The new report from the technology giant IBM has been written by the Director of the MIT Trust, Thomas Hardjono. The report outlines the results of a series of roundtable meetings that were held by the Congressional Blockchain Congress, which is a group of lawmakers in the US Congress that support this nascent technology. The meetings took place in 2017 and 2018 and were led by Representatives David Schweikert and Jared Polis.

The key purpose of the meetings was to understand the potential use cases for Blockchain and to boost the adoption levels of this technology. In this context, the three meetings featured different focuses: digital identity, payments, and supply chain and origin. 

The IBM report states that “strong industry consensus exists around the belief that blockchain technology will be the leading edge of ‘next Internet’ economy.” It further added:

“It is imperative that government and industry work together to continue and strengthen technological and market leadership in this new area, and to address potential policy and regulatory incompatibility that may constrain the growth of the emerging digital-blockchain economy.”

Obstacles for wider adoption of Blockchain

It is also understood that meeting’s goals comprised a better understanding of the use cases and finding common interests. Officials also strived to speed up the utilization of the technology and to understand what might become an obstacle for wider adoption of Blockchain. 

The report stated that meetings’ attendees came to three “overarching common themes.” Specifically, the participants believed that there needs to be “leadership and vision from the government, close collaboration between industry and government, and increased research and test-bed deployments.”

The report further notes:

“Currently there is a need for greater vision and leadership across government regarding the development of technology for a digital-blockchain economy, and the U.S. role in this future economy. Industry leaders believe this technology will be core to the future of the economy as a whole, just as the Internet has become.”

Noteworthy, the report did not provide any specifics about the attendees or which projects they might have represented. Yet, it is known that representatives from Ripple, Sweetbridge, Joust Bank, the National Institute of Standards and Technology, Microsoft’s Decentralized Identity Foundation, the Sovrin Foundation, the Linux Foundation, and IBM attended the meeting and gave presentations. 

The report added:

“It was this support from [the] government, combined with a shared vision for a U.S. leadership role in initial internet communications technology, that allowed the internet to flourish with broad adoption and become the foundation of the digital economy today.”

It also concluded that “more resources need to be allocated toward this nascent yet rapidly evolving technology, much in the way the U.S. government-funded early research into the internet in the 1970s and 1980s.”

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