"Mutual Distributed Ledger (aka blockchain) Technology - Business Or Technical Revolution?"

Wednesday 1 February 2017

6.00pm - 9.00pm

BCS, First Floor, The Davidson Building, 5 Southampton Street, London, WC2E 7HA

£15 for BCS Members, £20 for non-BCS Members (prices exclude VAT @ 20%)


Mutual distributed ledger (MDLs, aka blockchain) technology has been around for two decades but the public interest surrounding Bitcoin’s blockchain has created a frenzy of interest in applying the underlying ledger technology.

Professor Mainelli argues that this technology is as much about changing the organisation of central third party relationships as it is about technological implementation. Central third parties validate, safeguard, and preserve transactions among a community. The community can range from small and professional, to global and public. Successful central third parties frequently become natural monopolies, exposing them to two temptations, corruption and indolence. That said, there are equally technical approaches that form natural monopolies in ICT architecture that may equally be challenged, such as workflow systems and messaging hubs. MDLs move much safeguarding and preservation into the technology, in the process reducing the ‘switching costs’ for the community of moving to a new central third party. Both the technology and the reduced switching costs reduce the likelihood of overly powerful natural monopolies.  

About the speaker:

Alderman Professor Michael Mainelli FCCA FCSI FBCS
Executive Chairman, Z/Yen Group

A qualified accountant, securities professional, computer specialist, and management consultant, educated at Harvard University and Trinity College Dublin, Michael gained his PhD at London School of Economics where he was also a Visiting Professor. He co-founded Z/Yen in 1994, the City of London’s leading think-tank, to promote societal advance through better finance and technology after a career as a research scientist in aerospace & cartography creating the first commercial digital maps of the world, then accountancy-firm partner and director of Ministry of Defence research. He has led Z/Yen from creating mutual distributed ledgers (aka blockchain technology) through Taskforce 2000, the Financial £aboratory, Long Finance, the Global Financial Centres Index and the Global Intellectual Property Index. He is an Alderman of the City of London, Emeritus Professor & Trustee at Gresham College, a non-executive director of two listed firms and a regulator, and trustee of a several charities. He has written numerous academic papers and his third book, The Price of Fish: A New Approach to Wicked Economics and Better Decisions, won the 2012 Independent Publisher Book Awards Finance, Investment & Economics Gold Prize. Michael has been researching MDLs for over two decades and implemented several applications in areas such as clinical trials and insurance. He was BCS IT Director of the Year in 2005 for his work on predictive analytics.


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