Cryptodemocracy and its institutional possibilities

The Review of Austrian Economics, vol. 33, no 3.

11 Pages Posted: 24 May 2017 Last revised: 28 Oct 2020

See all articles by Darcy W E Allen

Darcy W E Allen

Royal Melbourne Institute of Technolog (RMIT University)

Chris Berg

Royal Melbourne Institute of Technolog (RMIT University)

Aaron M. Lane

Royal Melbourne Institute of Technolog (RMIT University)

Jason Potts

Royal Melbourne Institute of Technolog (RMIT University)

Date Written: July 1, 2018

Abstract

Democracy is an economic problem of choice constrained by transaction costs and information costs. Society must choose between competing institutional frameworks for the conduct of voting and elections. These decisions are constrained by the technologies and institutions available. Blockchains are a governance technology that reduces the costs of consensus, coordinating information, and monitoring and enforcing contracts. Blockchain could be applied to the voting and electoral process to form a crypto-democracy. Analysed through the Institutional Possibility Frontier framework, we propose that blockchain lowers disorder and dictatorship costs of the voting and electoral process. In addition to efficiency gains, this technological progress has implications for decentralised institutions of voting. One application of crypto-democracy, quadratic voting, is discussed.

Keywords: Blockchain, Cryptoeconomics, Democracy, New comparative economics, New institutional economics, Transaction cost economics, Voting

JEL Classification: D02, D7, D72, P4, P00, K00

Suggested Citation

Allen, Darcy W E and Berg, Chris and Lane, Aaron M. and Potts, Jason, Cryptodemocracy and its institutional possibilities (July 1, 2018). The Review of Austrian Economics, vol. 33, no 3. , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2973050 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2973050

Darcy W E Allen

Royal Melbourne Institute of Technolog (RMIT University) ( email )

Melbourne, 3000
Australia

Chris Berg

Royal Melbourne Institute of Technolog (RMIT University) ( email )

124 La Trobe Street
Melbourne, 3000
Australia

Aaron M. Lane (Contact Author)

Royal Melbourne Institute of Technolog (RMIT University) ( email )

124 La Trobe Street
Melbourne, 3000
Australia

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.rmit.edu.au/contact/staff-contacts/academic-staff/l/lane-dr-aaron

Jason Potts

Royal Melbourne Institute of Technolog (RMIT University) ( email )

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