Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs): Risks, Regulation, and Accountability

Discussion ​Paper Series: Notes ​on the ​21st​ ​Century

7 Pages Posted: 5 Dec 2017

See all articles by Usman W. Chohan

Usman W. Chohan

UNSW Business School; Critical Blockchain Research Initiative (CBRI); Centre for Aerospace & Security Studies (CASS)

Date Written: November 30, 2017


Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) provide rapid access to capital for new ventures, but suffer from drawbacks relating to non-regulation, considerable risk, and non-accountability, which has created controversy and raised questions about the mechanisms for regulation in an era of emergent cryptocurrencies. This discussion paper provides a timely review of the regulatory and other risks that ICOs pose for participants, which thereby situates ICOs in the underexplored domain of accountability.

Keywords: Initial Coin Offering, ICO, Cryptocurrency, Regulation, Blockchain, Bitcoin

Suggested Citation

Chohan, Usman W., Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs): Risks, Regulation, and Accountability (November 30, 2017). Discussion ​Paper Series: Notes ​on the ​21st​ ​Century, Available at SSRN: or

Usman W. Chohan (Contact Author)

UNSW Business School ( email )

UNSW Business School
High St
Sydney, NSW 2052

Critical Blockchain Research Initiative (CBRI) ( email )

Centre for Aerospace & Security Studies (CASS) ( email )


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