I have been recently researching possibilities to make Project Management processes smarter using the latest technologies. Part of this study, I came across Blockchain technology which is the backend of Bitcoins. It’s unfortunate that with the popularity of Bitcoin, blockchain’s potential got undermined. This technology amazed me, and I think it will be creating a revolution once its unleashed as we had in 1990’s with the birth of Internet. In a gist, I foresee two major issues which exist on internet today getting resolved with this technology. Blockchain has a potential to get trust of identity within the digital environment and will be able to create a real peer to peer relationship between the consumer and product owner.
To add to the above, there is a major issue of fake identities over the web, you can never be sure who is communicating with you at the other end. Due to this, there cannot be a complete trust relationship established. For example, it is estimated that 61% of the traffic on the internet are bots behaving as real people and 45% of the profiles on different social media profiles are forged for their real identity and in 2018, 57% of news was identified as fake (Brookings survey, 2018). The concern here is that these numbers are increasing day by day and there is no real solution to ensure that technology can authenticate on its own.
Another major issue which the internet was supposed to resolve is a direct relationship between the user and seller. There are always intermediaries in between the consumer and the provider, we are still not achieving complete transparent relationship in E-commerce. For example, it is not passenger to taxi driver relationship, but it is always passenger to Uber/Kareem/Ola/etc. to taxi driver. And in the case of shopping online mostly, it is user to Amazon/ eBay/Alibaba etc. to product seller. These intermediaries are getting richer and have become massively powerful. They not only benefit by providing the intermediate service but also have control on our personal data which might be getting used in other purposes without our full knowledge.
These problems aren’t small and with Artificial intelligence evolving rapidly, there are huge number of devices which will mandate an identity trail over the digital world. The potential upcoming solution is blockchain which is getting popular in many industries but still maturing. The technology claims to enable trust based on consensus, all transactions are read only and for any update or amendment most of the blocks in the chain should validate at the same time confirming all past record history. It enables a true peer to peer platform between the user and the provider without the need of any intermediaries. It empowers the user to sustain his own data through a decentralized database and lets him decide how much to share it and where.
Every device and person can have a digital identity which would be possible to efficiently validate within seconds to ensure its not fake. All industries will have an impact and there will be products and applications that will adhere to the technology to enhance trust between parties. Complex projects even encounter issues of trust between stakeholders that hinders healthy progress status and create bureaucracies. In March 2017, the Russian government-owned bank VEB has already implemented Project management platform over blockchain considering the advantages.
“The CEO of VEB (Russia) was asked why they considered blockchain technology for their project management platform. He explained that when they were thinking about how to manage their projects efficiently, they saw no other feasible platform. But they saw the blockchain as a good fundamental and qualitative platform that can serve them even unto the future. They see its potential in improving the quality of governance and minimizing bureaucracy.”
Stay tuned to know what the possibilities can be to have project processes smarter to enhance automated relationships between multiple project resources with blockchain in our future blogs/videos. I would be encouraged to receive comments over this compelling subject to take the discussion further.