On July 18th, 2016, the California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) discussed investing in the blockchain at “2035 Vision — Investing in the Future,” a talk on the agency’s future vision plan.
The talk was lead by Jesse McWaters, Project Lead, Disruptive Innovation in Financial Services, Financial Services Industries, World Economic Forum — who provided a presentation about blockchain technology to CalPERS.
McWaters began the talk offering the audience a story about how fintech has been viewed by financial services incumbents through time. More specifically, he detailed different attitudes these incumbents had about fintech in the space of about a year, saying at first, they viewed it as entirely non-threatening, but after a year had completely changed their tones regarding the matter.
After a while he shifting gears specifically to investing in blockchain technology. He began talking about blockchains in a similar manner as he did fintech, by explaining how the technology has evolved in the minds of people.
McWaters had this to say while introducing the topic to his audience:
“Two years ago it was a topic that was only talked about by mathematicians, a few economists, and some hardcore libertarians. Suddenly, now it’s on the cover of The Economist and on the lips of every CEO.”
Following up on that introduction he said that it would be the wrong question to ask, as an investor, to ask how blockchains work. According to him, it is much more important for investors to understand what blockchains are capable of doing.
The speaker then went on to list what he believed to be the technology’s three most important contributions: consensus model, payment system via consensus model, and smart contracts.
He also elaborated on the implications of blockchain tech, like more transparency in investing by providing investors with consensual, transparent records of fundamentals.
McWaters ended his presentation by discussing the risk that comes with the immaturity of blockchain technology, then opening up the forum for Q and A.
What do you think of CalPERS discussion about investing in blockchains? Let us know in the comments below!
Images Courtesy of CalPERS, neowin.net
Trevor is a writer at Bitcoinist. He is currently attending his first year at the University of Wisconsin-Fox Valley, with a selected major in Economics. Subscribes to the Austrian school of economics.
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