Disposable Identities? Why digital identity matters to blockchain disintermediation and for society

Abstract: Many smart contract applications – or more precisely blockchain-based digital ledger technologies (DLTs) proliferate. And yet, without accounting for the identity dimension and the different authentication regimes, there is little chance that these technologies will gain widespread use, and their disruptive innovation potential will not be realized. A growing number of digital interactions in which we engage online require more trust and more security; choosing the right identity technologies and data policy safeguards is an important policy choice. Digital wallets are part of our proposed solution: based on disposable identities tied to events and timelines. We explain why identity technologies matter. We describe the communication network architectures and functionalities. We show how EU Treaty legislation safeguards the important elements of this identity framework. We give examples of self- sovereign identity, and other solutions adopted by EU Member States. We conclude that successful deployment requires an EU legislative and regulatory framework fit for the digital society. The digital identity problem starts from the perspective of serving half a billion individual citizens, and inclusion requires public policy that strongly supports it.


Disintermediation Economics

The Impact of Blockchain on Markets and Policies

Editors: Kaili, Eva, Psarrakis, Dimitrios (Eds.)
Provides a coherent Blockchain framework structured around microeconomics, macroeconomics, and political economy.
Brings together leading and experienced policy makers, corporate practitioners, and pioneering academics from top universities.
Offers a road map of Blockchain best practices that can be immediately useful to firms, policy makers as well as academics.

Loretta Anania, Gaëlle Le Gars, Rob van Kranenburg