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New opportunities for the energy sector

“Blockchain technology has the potential to revolutionise the energy system.” Using this quote from Süddeutsche Zeitung the Germany Energy Agency dena invited to participate at the dialogue forum “Blockchain – new opportunities for the energy market” to Berlin´s Novotel on the 1st of March 2017.  Almost one hundred guests followed this invitation and experienced a day full of information as well as interesting discussions around blockchain technologies.

After some welcome words by  Andreas Kuhlmann, Chairman of the dena executive board, and by Dr. Wolfgang Langen from BMWi,  Philipp Richard, project director at dena, explained about the agenda of the day and how this dialogue forum fits into the dgitization projects of dena.

Afterwards I had the pleasure to hold some introduction presentation to blockchain (please find the link to the presentation below). A brief Q+A session next to my presentation was a good indicator that a reasonable share of the participants already had digged into the “blockchain space”.

Following there was an interesting panel discussion among a couple of energy market experts. Tobias Frederico from Energy Brainpool brought a distinctive  aspect into play: “Blockchain can make the energy transition more reliable.” And Kirsten Hasberg, Co-Founder of StromDAO.de, made an interesting comparism between early promotors of Renewable Energy and Blockchain.

Christoph Burger, Senior Lecturer / Senior Associate Dean of Executive Education ESMT Berlin, was next with his talk about “Business fields for blockchain in the energy sector”. Clear statement: the focus for the development of blockchain-based applications should be on process optimization and on platforms.

Before the coffee break a workshop part was conducted – divided into three groups: technology and efficiency, data protection and data security as well as standards, interfaces and regulation. The interesting discussions held there made it obvious, how complex the challenges in the energy sector are – especially when it comes to the usage of new technology concepts like blockchain.

The final presentation was held by  Prof. Dr. Strüker, professor for energy management at the Fresenius University of Applied Sciences in Frankfurt. He concentrated on what concretely needs to be done now to come from the idea to a real implementation. E.g. I found his statement that we are  on the way into a realtime energy economy remarkable.

Phillip Richard, Project Lead Energy Systems and Energy Services at dena, about the dialogue forum “Blockchain – new opportunities for the energy market”:

„It is important to understand the key characteristics of digitization in order to seize its opportunities and to handle its risks. Among its key characteristics are e.g. extremely high amounts of data that are being exchanged at an increasing pace; the possibility of data scaling and an increasingly accurate identification of target groups; aspirations for transparency and sharing; multiple use of data sets for different purposes. The vision of blockchain addresses these key characteristics in a unique way and offers the potential for solutions both for upcoming questions concerning digitization in general and for the issues of data security and data protection in particular. On its way to concrete solutions and applications the blockchain technology has yet to confirm its ambitious targets. Trust in this technology has to build up slowly and the efficiency of the technology will have to increase significantly in the coming years.”

Please find additional information on the event on the dena website (german only).


dena dialogue forum fb
from Frank Bolten

Copyright pictures: Deutsche Energie-Agentur (dena) and own pictures

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Expert talk “use cases for blockchain technology”

Some days before Christmas “Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt (DLR)” invited to hold an expert talk about “use cases for blockchain technology” on behalf of the Bundeswirtschaftsministerium BMWi (Federal Ministry of Economics and Energy). The meeting was well organised by Matthias Kuom (DLR) and had the main purpose to discuss the innovation potential of blockchain technology among a small number of experts from academics and business on the one side and a couple of members from BMWi and DLR on the other side. The accountable department from BMWi uses that kind of event formats during the opinion-building process when the necessary steps shall be defined to foster the development of attractive ICT solutions for the national economy , especially for the German “Mittelstand”.

As a start I was asked to hold a 15 minutes presentation on blockchain (you find the presentation below), after that each out of our expert group of seven had the opportunity to comment on three mayor topics: “state of play”, “disruptive potential” and “the role of the government”. The further participating experts were (in alphabetical order):

Raimund Gross (Innovation Manager Blockchain from the  SAP Innovation Center Network)
Prof. Wolfgang Prinz (Vice Chair Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Information Technology FIT)
Philipp Richard, Project Director at the “Deutsche-Energie-Agentur GmbH” (Dena)
Stefan Teis (SVP, Group Product & Business Development,  Deutsche Börse AG and Member of the Governing Board of the Hyperledger Projekts)
Stephan Zimprich (Partner at the law firm Fieldfisher and head of the competence group blockchain at the eco association)

In a closing discussion round some additional experts played an active role. With Kirsten Hasberg, energy expert BlockchainHub Berlin, gave very interesting insights into blockchain based projects in the market for renewable energies. Another expert was Dr. Martin Holland, who is a member of the management board of PROSTEP AG and the responsible coordinator of the interesting project SAMPL (Secure Additive Manufacturing Platform), which you can find here.

During my business life I happened to attend a couple of events with the target to convey the standpoints of academics and business to responsible persons from the government. The expert talk “use cases for blockchain technology” for me was an outstanding event. The chosen format (brief introduction presentation as a start, afterwards a round of questions to well chosen experts following a clear framework and finishing with a discussion round) was well fitting the complexity of blockchain. And our “target audience” – the members from BMWi and DLR – were well prepared and put intelligent questions what led to good and intensive discussions.

For sure there will be further events “politics meets blockchain”. The many-layered aspects of the blockchain technology bear enormous potential, where politics can, and probably here and there must, play an important role – either when we look at regulations challenges or when we look at the gonvernment as a user.

 

 

 

 

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Article “Interesting applications with blockchain technology”

Almost six months after my article to give a general introduction to blockchain technologies was published (click here to read the related post) I wrote a brief explanation on the use case section on this website. In the article on intelligente-welt.de you can find some explanation about the structure of the use case section and how how you can filter the for you interesting projects out of the far more than one hundred entries. Here you find the link to the article (German language only).

 

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lindenpartners: Banking on Blockchain?

“Blockchain is an emotive word. Hymnic, partly vague eulogies alternate with scepticism and threat scenarios. The important questions “what can blockchain actually do?”, “does is help me in any way?” are asked quite rarely. We go a different way: at the 24th of November 2016, 2-6 pm, we invite you to discuss how blockchain technology works and how it might be utilised for banks and enterprises. Our framework will be presentations, which are held by experts out of the tech and finance area together with a lindenpartners lawyer.” That invitation was send out by lindenpartners.

The combination out of blockchain experts and lindepartners lawyers was well made, the presentations were really informative. Here you find the charts presented.

Introduction – the technology and future use cases
Prof. Dr.-Ing. Katarina Adam (HTW), Dr. Christian Lange-Hausstein (lindenpartners)

 

Eficiency gains vs. security risks
Radoslav Albrecht (CEO bitbond) and Dr. Frank Zingel (lindenpartners)

Touching the blockchain – practical use for fund management
Bruce Pon (CEO Bigchain DB) and Christoph Jacobs (lindenpartners)

Last not least a couple of ambience pictures of the location:

 

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Fintech Week Hamburg: WTFFTW Hype Reality Check “Blockchain”

During the Fintech Week Hamburg (10th-14th of Oct 2016) Florian Glatz, software developer and lawyer from Berlin, held the interesting presentation “From Fax Machines to Fact Machines” (charts are mainly in German language). In my eyes the most important slides are:

  • the triad of scarce resources, economic incentives and free competition is an important base for the crypto economics
  • design principles: while one goal of legal contracts is to anticipate aberrations by smart contracts only the “happy path” is defined
  • the limits of smart contracts: the parties´ motifs underlying a contract are expressed implicitly as a maximum

In addition please pay attention to the three perspectives on regulation at the end of the presentation.

 

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Bitkom Fintech activities

Invitation by the „Bundesverband Informationswirtschaft, Telekommunikation und neue Medien e.V. Bitkom“ to the „Bitkom Fintech Day“ as a blockchain expert. In October 2016 a discussion is held whether or not a separate blockchain workgroup shall be set up.

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Bitkom-Arbeitsgruppe “Banking, Financials & FinTechs”

 

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MIT Course „Future Commerce“

Three months after the start of the MIT Fintech Certificate Course „Future Commerce“ the winning „Capstone Projects“ are announced. The project „Community Token“, developed in cooperation with Christoph Martin, was awarded by the tutor team as one of the top eight projects out of more than 200 projects.

Read more

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Article on Intelligente-Welt.de

The following article (in german language) I wrote with he target to provide the interested audience:

→  An overview, how the technology works
→  Present several use cases
→  Explain some of the political framwork

Article on www.intelligente-welt.de “Blockchain – programmiertes Vertrauen”