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IS BLOCKCHAIN THE

REAL DEAL? Why it will change information management forever

BY ALAN PELZ-SHARPE

F

rom huge technology vendors, like Cisco, to small startups to end user organizations in sectors like insurance, shipping, and government, most conversations about the topic of blockchain typically fall into one of two camps. First, there are those that say blockchain for information management is all hype and will never happen. Then there are those that believe that it’s nothing short of the second coming. What unites them, however, is the seemingly lack of tangible evidence in the form of major blockchain implementations. While this noticeable gap

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might frustrate some or increase skepticism in others, it could also mean that we’re not looking in the right place for it. In fact, I believe there is plenty of evidence that proves blockchain is real and that its coming at us fast—if we know where to look for it. Blockchain projects will involve massive organizational and technological change, upending many traditional ways of working. These projects will not only require building out a technology network of interconnected nodes, data, and systems but also one of codependent actors (i.e., companies, government bodies, and supply chain bit players). Until there is some kind of

consensus around a business use case for blockchain—and all or, at least, a significant minority are in agreement— nothing can happen. Finding consensus among an army of competing firms in a free market may sound a lot like herding cats, but the weird thing is it’s actually happening. A compelling piece of evidence to support blockchain’s future is the explosion of consortiums that have sprung up around the world and across a host of sectors. These blockchain consortiums are founded by the industry Goliaths who are leading the way, and in their wake, smaller players are eagerly following. If finding consensus

DOCUMENT Strategy Spring 2018  

DOCUMENT Strategy Spring 2018

DOCUMENT Strategy Spring 2018  

DOCUMENT Strategy Spring 2018