REA, Triple-Entry Accounting and Blockchain: Converging Paths to Shared Ledger Systems

32 Pages Posted: 11 Jun 2020

See all articles by Juan Ignacio Ibañez

Juan Ignacio Ibañez

Universidad Católica de Córdoba; UCL Centre for Blockchain Technologies

Chris N. Bayer

Development International e.V.

Paolo Tasca

UCL Centre for Blockchain Technologies

Jiahua Xu

Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne; UCL Centre for Blockchain Technologies

Date Written: May 15, 2020

Abstract

In recent years, the concept of shared ledger systems offering a single source of truth has begun to put traditional bookkeeping into question. To date, its historical development remains unclear and under-researched. This paper conducts a genealogical analysis of shared ledger systems from their early forms such as Resource-Event-Agent (REA) accounting and triple-entry accounting (TEA) to their present incarnation in blockchain. We show how accounting frameworks developed between the 1980s and the early 2000s constitute the historical roots of TEA and have impacted much-discussed blockchain applications of today. As such, we duly acknowledge the influence of each individual contributing to this development, correct common misconceptions and map out how the paths of REA, TEA and blockchain converge in the realm of shared ledger systems.

Keywords: Triple-Entry Accounting, REA Model, Single Source of Truth, Blockchain, Distributed Ledger Technology

Suggested Citation

Ibañez, Juan Ignacio and Bayer, Chris N. and Tasca, Paolo and Xu, Jiahua, REA, Triple-Entry Accounting and Blockchain: Converging Paths to Shared Ledger Systems (May 15, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3602207 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3602207

Juan Ignacio Ibañez (Contact Author)

Universidad Católica de Córdoba ( email )

Obispo Trejo 323
Córdoba, X5000IYG
Argentina

UCL Centre for Blockchain Technologies ( email )

Gower Street
London, WC1E 6BT
United Kingdom

Chris N. Bayer

Development International e.V. ( email )

Germany

Paolo Tasca

UCL Centre for Blockchain Technologies ( email )

Gower Street
London, WC1E 6BT
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://paolotasca.com

Jiahua Xu

Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne ( email )

Quartier UNIL-Dorigny, Bâtiment Extranef, # 211
40, Bd du Pont-d'Arve
CH-1015 Lausanne, CH-6900
Switzerland

UCL Centre for Blockchain Technologies ( email )

UCL CBT UCL Computer Science
Malet Place London WC
London, London
United Kingdom

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