Global Standards Mapping Initiative: An overview of blockchain technical standards

 

As blockchain technology continues its evolution, calls for clarity surrounding technical, regulatory and governance models have grown louder. Decisions on these foundational elements will shape the trajectory and potential of the technology.

However, there has been little work to catalogue and evaluate the current bedrock upon which the ecosystem can build, despite the increased activity in each of these arenas. As actors across the world construct innovative solutions to address society’s toughest challenges, a baseline is needed to facilitate impactful and responsible innovation.

Cataloguing the status of dozens of standard setting entities and consortia plus regulations across 129 countries, the Global Standards Mapping Initiative (GSMI) represents an unprecedented effort to map and analyse the current landscape. It is divided into two distinct components:

  1. Technical standards
  2. Legislation and guidance released by sovereign and international bodies and industry body best practices and standards (including an overview of industry groups and consortia)

The work was a joint effort between the World Economic Forum and the Global Blockchain Business Council, with significant contributions from the MIT Media Lab, ING, Accenture, SDX and the Milken Institute. This cross-organizational effort was a truly global collaboration, as well as an alignment of previously disparate initiatives. We hope this will serve as a model for future ecosystem-wide efforts of a similar nature

Authors

Sumedha Deshmukh Platform Curator – Blockchain and Digital Assets, World Economic Forum

Océane Boulais Researcher, MIT Digital Currency Initiative (Global Blockchain Council Fellow)

Tommy Koens Researcher, ING Group

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