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Blockchains, Smart Contracts, Decentralised Autonomous Organisations and the Law

Edited by Daniel Kraus, Thierry Obrist and Olivier Hari, Professors and Attorneys, University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland
The growth of Blockchain technology presents a number of legal questions for lawyers, regulators and industry participants alike. Primarily, regulators must allow Blockchain technology to develop whilst also ensuring it is not being abused. This book addresses the challenges posed by various applications of Blockchain technology, such as cryptocurrencies, smart contracts and initial coin offerings, across different fields of law. Contributors explore whether the problems posed by Blockchain and its applications can be addressed within the present legal system or whether significant rethinking is required.
Extent: c 384 pp
Hardback Price: $165.00 Web: $148.50
Publication Date: 2019
ISBN: 978 1 78811 512 4
Availability: Not yet published (pre-order)
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  • Law - Academic
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The growth of Blockchain technology presents a number of legal questions for lawyers, regulators and industry participants alike. This book identifies the legal challenges posed by cryptocurrencies, smart contracts and other applications of Blockchain, questioning whether these challenges can be addressed within the current legal system, or whether significant changes are required.

Chapters assess how Blockchain’s many applications will affect different areas of law, including contract, criminal, financial and private international law. Contributors analyse how these fields of law may need to adapt to accommodate Blockchain technology, proposing possible solutions and ways forward. Several chapters are based on the Swiss legal framework as it allows market participants the widest freedom to operate in Blockchains and cryptocurrencies. Overall, this illuminating work highlights the importance of creating a regulatory structure that will allow Blockchain technologies to develop, whilst also ensuring they are not abused. The conclusions of this book are however quite reassuring, with contributing authors suggesting that although disruptive, the challenges brought about by the ‘Blockchain revolution’ can, for the most part, be effectively addressed within the law as we know it.

This book will be a valuable resource for practising lawyers and academic researchers who are interested in understanding more about how legal and regulatory systems will be affected by the implementation of Blockchain technologies.
Contributors: A. Alberini, V. Botteron, C. Boulay, N. Capus, B. Carron, P. Delimatsis, F. Guillaume, O. Hari, B. Homsy, D. Kraus, M. Le Boudec, V. Mignon, T. Obrist, V. Pfammatter, R.A. Pfister, V. Salomon, P. Witzig
Contents:

Foreword
Daniel Kraus, Olivier Hari and Thierry Obrist

Introduction
Daniel Kraus

1. Blockchains – Perspectives and challenges
Vincent Mignon

2. Cutting out the middleman: A case study of blockchain-technology induced reconfigurations in the Swiss financial services industry
Pascal Witzig and Victoriya Salomon

3. Aspects of Private International Law Related to Blockchain Transactions
Florence Guillaume

4. When Disruptive Meets Streamline: International Standardization in Blockchain
Panagiotis Delimatsis

5. How Smart Can a Contract Be?
Blaise Carron and Valentin Botteron

6. Aspects of Swiss financial Regulation
Biba Homsy

7. The protection of cryptocurrencies’ owner : Selected aspects of Swiss financial market and bankruptcy law in relation to the treatment of cryptocurrencies in bankruptcy proceedings, in particular bitcoin
Olivier Hari

8. Blockchains, Smart Contracts, Decentralised Autonomous Organisations and the Law: Perspectives of a Distributed Future: Aspects of Criminal Law
Nadja Capus and Maëlle Le Boudec

9. Blockchains: Aspects of Intellectual Property Law
Daniel Kraus and Charlotte Boulay

10. Blockchain and Data Protection
Adrien Alberini and Vincent Pfammatter

11. Tax Treatment of Cryptocurrency Holders and Miners in the Era of Virtual Currencies from a Multijurisdictional and Swiss Perspective
Thierry Obrist and Roland A. Pfister

Index