How can we use blockchain for transparency in public administrations?

(Agustina De Luca) #1

We are 4 activists from Argentina, Honduras and Mexico participating on the OAS Fellowship on Open Government in the Americas. We are developing a project that seeks to use blockchain to increase transparency, accountability and effectiveness in public administrations; particularly in the subsidies and grants assignments to cultural institutions. We would love to learn from this community so any response to the following questions will be much well appreciated (either papers, researches, experiences, quick thoughts, links…etc). Thanks !!!

  1. How many servers are needed (at least) in order to develop a blockchain?

  2. The certification of the blockchain in Bictoin is done through the “miners”. How can we assure certification for public officers in a closed blockchain? Through digital signatures?

  3. How is the process to assign users and specific roles in blockchain? Is it possible to have certifying users (public administration), and others just as “observers” (civil society organizations, academia, interested users, etc – which can, also, provide servers or PCs to host the information)?

  4. Do you think that developing a blockchain for a public process, such as fellowships or subsidies/grants for institutions, is difficult?

  5. What are the programming costs? Is the code too complex?

  6. Do you know of any examples or experiences from any public administration around the world who has tried to develop a blockchain, and what were the difficulties, successes, problems that emerged, etc? Are there any legal constraints?

(chuy cepeda) #2

I’ll like to push forward this post by asking:

Are there any “famous” or popular blockchain development tutorials or coding resources?

What’s the ‘from scratch’ process to end up with a blockchain implementation? Do I need to install something in my computer, what’s the language to go through, how can I test it locally, how is it deployed, how do I start onboarding users…

(Beth Noveck) #3

Also sharing this overview by @brianbehlendorf

(Anirudh Dinesh) #4

These selected readings on blockchain will be useful to answer some of your questions on governance applications! (Link here)

(John Prpic) #5

Those are some really great links everyone, thanks for sharing!
Agustina, I reply in brief to the structure of questions that you pose.

  1. This shouldn’t be a worry at all, basically you need to engage some software developers, who can then answer all these specific technical questions for you, once you determine exactly what it is that you want to do.

  2. If it’s a private Blockchain that you are constructing, you can set whatever rules you’d like, in whatever manner you choose. .

  3. See above.

  4. No, not with some good people to work with.

  5. Depends on the specifics of what you want to do.

  6. See here for example:

Overall, like the UN, you’d probably want to look at building on the Ethereum chain as your course of action.

(Sebastian Haselbeck) #6

The City of Vienna is piloting blockchain for open data

However I haven’t yet seen an English language resource for what it is that they are doing. I will try to find out, maybe @krabina knows more

(Andrew Hoppin) #7

I’d love to learn more about Vienna’s initiative on this. (note however that their site seems in need of some help-- recommend #CKAN or #DKAN!): .

Does anyone have contacts there?

(Graeme Jones) #8

i successfully progressed bitcoin currency code adoption (XBT) via IATI and a proof of concept foreign aid bitcoin transaction with nominal funding and technical support from a bitcoin exchange operator based in london/berlin

the same process could progress ETH/XET re etc

(Brigitte Lutz) #9

You find a short english description on the end of, and english slides here:

Kind regards from Digital City Vienna

(Andrew Hoppin) #10

Wonderful-- thank you!