“Blockchain could be a game changer”

With the newly-founded eco Competence Group Blockchain, the association is focussing on an important technology. The group is led by the lawyer Stephan Zimprich. We spoke to him in a short interview about the importance of the topic, the plans of the association, and on his own evaluation.

Mr. Zimprich, you have taken on leadership of the new eco Competence Group Blockchain. What are you planning in this role?

We have a range of goals for the new Competence Group. Initially, it will be the evaluation of the possibilities and concentration on sustainable use cases. As the ground work, we want map out the technical and legal foundations. And finally, we want to develop recommendations for action for the association and for politics.

Professionally, you are lawyer and a partner in Fieldfisher (Germany) LLP. How did you get involved with the topic Blockchain?

As a lawyer, my work is at the intersection between IP and technology law, so that the topic more or less inevitably caught my attention at some point. The technology offers great potential for a wide range of clients, but also harbors many uncertainties and risks regarding the actual development and and its treatment in law.

Why do you personally consider Blockchain to be such an important topic?

Blockchain could be a game changer, because two essential issues – direct online transactions and revision security – can both be resolved simultaneously with this technology. But the devil is in the details, and there are many questions, difficulties and barriers to implementation. Blockchain is certainly no sure-fire success.

Where so you see the most important applications for Blockchain in the short and mid-term?

In the short term, developments are conceivable in the area of online payment – if the corresponding legal framework can be created quickly. There are also many good ideas and use cases in the area of the shared economy. In particular, there is also great potential for financial and insurance products, and Blockchain could also play a role in online marketing. With a more long-term view, I also see its use in e-governance.