Blockchain, Law, and Business Supply Chains: The Need for Governance and Legal Frameworks to Achieve Sustainability
Sulkowski, A. J. (2019). Blockchain, Business Supply Chains, Sustainability, and Law: The Future of Governance, Legal Frameworks, and Lawyers? Delaware Journal of Corporate Law, 43 (2), 303-345.
13 Pages Posted: 23 Jul 2018 Last revised: 16 Sep 2019
Date Written: May 13, 2018
Blockchain technology has been hailed as the next disruptive leap forward in data sciences. Most legal scholarship related to the topic has focused on its relevance to finance, but it could revolutionize business supply chains. Specifically, blockchain-enabled solutions are expected to improve the reliability of data related to supply chains and to help businesses eliminate waste and harms to people and the environment. Despite the hype, this paper will explain why the promise of distributed electronic ledgers will only be realized in the context of effective governance and legal frameworks. Another goal of this paper is to identify the weaknesses of blockchain technology in the context of supply chains and its vaunted potential to help firms reduce harms. This paper will highlight the risk of placing blind faith in the technology as far as outcomes. Achieving true sustainability through the use of blockchain-enabled solutions—reducing or entirely eliminating the damaging side effects of business—is, again, a question of private and public governance: it requires a shift of mindset and deliberately setting and enforcing ambitious and measurable outcomes. Blockchain only matters, therefore, to the extent that it is coupled with meaningful goals and enabling frameworks of law.
Keywords: blockchain, law, supply chain, sustainability, business
JEL Classification: K1, K10, K2, K19, K20, K29, K3, K30, K32, K39, K40, K49, M48
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation