Ideas & Updates

Blockchain: Cutting through the noise

Introduction: Framing of our blog series on distributed ledger technology

Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT), often referred to as blockchain, has garnered a lot of attention in the past few years. Is it just “a solution in search of a problem” or, does it offer answers for real-world policy questions such as digital identity and remittances? This six-blog series, by Rodrigo Mejia Ricart and Camilo Tellez, aims to foster a better understanding of the technology. The first three blogs discuss what is DLT, the debate around key stated benefits and the evidence around different use cases. The last three blogs discuss DLT for digital identity, supply chain and remittances in detail.

The Better Than Cash Alliance conducts analyses of leading-edge issues in digital payments in order to share useful knowledge for its members. Distributed ledger technology (DLT) is an innovation that has opened a multitude of questions and possibilities for digital payments innovation.

Therefore, the Alliance is hosting a new blog series on DLT to explore some of the critical questions raised by DLT-based innovations. While acknowledging that DLT is still a nascent technology that gives rise to many legitimately contested issues, the aim of the Alliance is to provide readers with nuanced and rigorous data and analysis, as a counterbalance to extremes of excessive hype and disillusionment that have tended to surround the technology (see Gartner’s 2018 Cycle of Hype). By analyzing the available literature and assessing existing use cases, pilots and proofs of concept, the series seeks to provide practical information for all members of the Alliance and other stakeholders who may be thinking about potential DLT-based initiatives and how to approach them.