2015 publications

Giving Unchained: Philanthropy and the Blockchain

The blockchain is a shared public ledger which makes cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin, possible by providing a record of all transactions and a way of determining who owns what at any given time.

With the rise of the cryptocurrency - forms of digital money which aren’t regulated and verified by a single organisation - there’s a push to make more of blockchain technology as a way of representing assets, providing donors with a new way of giving and charities a new fundraising channel.

The paper asks:

  • Can we use coloured coins to represent assets within the digital space, opening up the possibility of making donations of intangible assets such as intellectual property?
  • Could self-governing ‘smart contracts’ offer new opportunities for business to embed philanthropy at their core, and new ways for charities to raise money and address social problems?
  • Can blockchain technology offer a form of ‘radical transparency’ that can overcome public scepticism and a lack of trust?
  • Will an ‘internet of things’, underpinned by blockchain technology lead to a world in which smart machines emerge as a new, hyper-rational donor class?

To find out more about what blockchain technology could mean for philanthropy and charities, Download the report 'Giving Unchained-Philanthropy and the Blockchain.

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Blockchain philanthropy infographic

View the infographic 'Washing machine philanthropy and how it could work in a blockchain world'.

Download the infographic

Using blockchain technology to create and regulate CSOs

Could the blockchain make charity regulation possible without standalone regulatory organisations?

Download the report Block and Tackle