The Chapter analyses the relationship between (permissionless public) blockchains and the notion of sovereignty, arguing that the blockchain technology is a potentially lethal challenge both for national sovereignties defended by sovereign states and for international organisations that aspire to acquire sovereignty, such as the European Union. The Chapter considers the two main dimensions of such challenge: the issue of public monopoly over money (purse) and on the ‘legitimate’ use of force (sword), that encompasses most of all some typical state roles such as control and validation functions, as well as the production of law and the provision of justice. The Chapter features some final remarks on the possible scenarios that lie ahead, which range from the extreme of the affirmation of state sovereignty at the expense of these technologies, which could even be banned or nationalized, to the opposite extreme of breaking up and superseding sovereignty, through various (but not easy to imagine) intermediate possibilities.
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
Get access to the full article by using one of the access options below.