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Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 562310
Title The political imaginaries of blockchain projects: discerning the expressions of an emerging ecosystem
Author(s) Husain, Syed Omer; Franklin, Alex; Roep, Dirk
Source Sustainability Science 15 (2020). - ISSN 1862-4065 - p. 379 - 394.
DOI https://doi.org/10.1007/s11625-020-00786-x
Department(s) Rural Sociology
WASS
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2020
Keyword(s) Blockchain - Decentralization - Political imaginaries - Prefigurative politics - Technopolitics
Abstract

There is a wealth of information, hype around, and research into blockchain’s ‘disruptive’ and ‘transformative’ potential concerning every industry. However, there is an absence of scholarly attention given to identifying and analyzing the political premises and consequences of blockchain projects. Through digital ethnography and participatory action research, this article shows how blockchain experiments personify ‘prefigurative politics’ by design: they embody the politics and power structures which they want to enable in society. By showing how these prefigurative embodiments are informed and determined by the underlying political imaginaries, the article proposes a basic typology of blockchain projects. Furthermore, it outlines a frame to question, cluster, and analyze the expressions of political imaginaries intrinsic to the design and operationalization of blockchain projects on three analytic levels: users, intermediaries, and institutions.

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