Indicators of Disruption Potentials - Analysis of the Blockchain Technology’s Potential Impact

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Dokumentart: Article
Date: 2019-12-17
Source: Reutlinger Diskussionsbeiträge zu Finanz- & Rechnungswesen ; 2019,1
Language: English
Faculty: 9 Sonstige / Externe
Department: Sonstige/Externe
DDC Classifikation: 330 - Economics
Keywords: Blockchain , Public-Key-Kryptosystem , Bank
Other Keywords:
financial industry distributed ledger technology
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The goal of this paper was to answer the question whether blockchain has the potential to become a disruption according to Clayton Christensen’s disruption theory. Therefore, the theory and the five characteristics that define the process of disruption were outlined in the first part of the paper. That and the following explanation of the blockchain technology served as the basis for the analysis and evaluation in chapters four to seven. For the analy-sis, three applications of the DLT, namely payment methods, intermediaries, as well as data storage and transfer, were considered. The fulfillment of the five characteristics of disrup-tion was assessed using an example for each of the three applications. While the results of the analysis provide a general idea about the indicators of disruption for three applications of blockchain, they are not fully representative. Hence, even if the example of microgrids suggests that blockchain will probably not be disruptive for inter-mediaries, there is a fair chance that it could be in fields other than electricity. Moreover, to answer the question concerning whether the DLT will be disruptive, only three major fields of application were considered. However, the technology also has other forms of applica-tion, which might or might not reveal indicators of disruption. Another possible source of error is the assumption that characteristics of disruption are not fulfilled, as it is not possible to ultimately prove that something does not exist. Moreover, there is a chance that some of the sources are biased towards or against blockchain. This paper suggests that, in the financial services industry, too, the impact of blockchain will be significant. However, given the manifoldness of the services that are part of the industry, it cannot generally be concluded whether the DLT will disrupt the industry. For example, in services related to payment methods, blockchain is unlikely to follow disrup-tive pattern, despite the recent hype surrounding blockchain-based cryptocurrencies. How-ever, regarding data storage and transfer, the technology might as well follow disruptive pattern in the financial services industry just as the application of blockchain solutions has been doing in the healthcare industry.

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