CIO Straight Talk - Issue 11 - 36

THE IMPLICATIONS OF
BLOCKCHAIN TRANSACTIONS ARE
STAGGERING. WHEN A MAID IN
NEW YORK CITY NO LONGER HAS
TO PAY A LARGE FEE TO SEND
$400 BACK HOME TO HONDURAS,
THAT'S NOT ONLY SAVING HER
MONEY - IT'S SHIFTING POWER
AND ULTIMATELY CHANGING THE
WORLD'S INCOME DISTRIBUTION.

We are working to realize blockchain's potential
for good. Since January 2018, the World Food
Program has been experimenting with an initiative
that uses blockchain to send money rather
than food to Syrian refugees, giving them the
autonomy to secure food locally. So far, they have
served about 100,000 people, and they hope to
scale it up to 500,000.

SHIFTING CONTROL
Other applications should follow very quickly,
particularly in the developing world. Recently, I
was talking to an entrepreneur from Kenya, who
told me he developed a blockchain application
for financial transactions because he saw that his
uncle always sent money to his family. But the

1

money only went to his father. His mother never
saw any of it because she didn't have an identity,
didn't have a cell phone, and didn't have a bank
account. Unfortunately, the father spent most of
the money on drugs and cigarettes and alcohol,
and very little of it on his children, food and
education.
The entrepreneur had always wanted to develop
an app to make sure the money would go to his
mother. The peer-to-peer blockchain-powered
product he developed would have allowed her to
receive money on her phone, so she could spend
it on education and healthcare.
The implications of blockchain transactions
are staggering. When a maid in New York City
no longer must pay a large fee to send $400
back home to Honduras, that's not only saving
her money - it's shifting power, and ultimately
changing the world's income distribution.
Within three to five years, I believe we'll see a lot
of innovations that use blockchain to displace
many traditional middlemen, whether that's
money transfer services, educational institutions,
or government entities. And other innovations
that give women a secure legal identity will, I
hope, mean experiences like my grandmother's
become ancient history.

Giving everyone access to tamperproof documents will make it
harder to oppress many of the
world's most vulnerable people.

2 Blockchain makes it easier to

create trust, making it possible to
disintermediate many traditional
middlemen.

3 Posing a challenge can be a good
way to incite creative solutions.

36



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of CIO Straight Talk - Issue 11

http://magazine.straighttalkonline.com/issue11
http://magazine.straighttalkonline.com/womenintech2
http://magazine.straighttalkonline.com/issue11
http://magazine.straighttalkonline.com/issue10
http://magazine.straighttalkonline.com/issue9
http://magazine.straighttalkonline.com/issue8
http://magazine.straighttalkonline.com/issue7
http://magazine.straighttalkonline.com/issue6
http://magazine.straighttalkonline.com/issue5
http://magazine.straighttalkonline.com/issue4
http://magazine.straighttalkonline.com/issue3
http://magazine.straighttalkonline.com/issue2
http://magazine.straighttalkonline.com/issue1
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