Blockchain and Economic Development: Hype vs. Reality

Increasing attention is being paid to the potential of blockchain technology to address long-standing challenges related to economic development. Blockchain proponents argue that it will expand opportunities for exchange and collaboration by reducing reliance on intermediaries and the frictions associated with them. The purpose of this paper is to provide a clear-eyed view of the technology’s potential in the context of development. In it, we focus on identifying the questions that development practitioners should be asking technologists, and challenges that innovators must address for the technology to meet its potential.

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