The Key Man Problem in Cryptocurrencies?: Case of QuadrigaCX

Notes on the 21st Century (CBRI), 2019

10 Pages Posted: 15 Feb 2019

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: February 5, 2019

Abstract

The key man problem refers to the economic risk of concentrating powers in a single individual at the apex of an organization. While a common consideration in traditional finance, such a problem would hardly seem representative of the decentralized, immutable, and “trustless” technology underpinning blockchain and cryptocurrencies. This discussion paper examines how the actual systems of exchange in the domain of cryptocurrencies can indeed face the key man risk, using a case study of QuadrigaCX. The paper suggests that key man risk challenges the implementation of cryptocurrencies in praxis, thereby tying traditional finance risks to alternative digital-financial assets.

Keywords: Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency, Cryptoanarchism, Smart Contracts, Finance, Exchange, Key Man Risk

Suggested Citation

Chohan, Usman W., The Key Man Problem in Cryptocurrencies?: Case of QuadrigaCX (February 5, 2019). Notes on the 21st Century (CBRI), 2019. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3329573 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3329573

Usman W. Chohan (Contact Author)

UNSW Business School ( email )

UNSW Business School
High St
Sydney, NSW 2052
Australia

Critical Blockchain Research Initiative (CBRI) ( email )

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

Rawalpindi
Pakistan

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