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Rethinking the Regulation of Cryptoassets
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Rethinking the Regulation of Cryptoassets

Cryptographic Consensus Technology and the New Prospect

9781800886780 Edward Elgar Publishing
Syren Johnstone, Executive Director of the Master of Laws in Compliance and Regulation programme, Faculty of Law, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR
Publication Date: 2021 ISBN: 978 1 80088 678 0 Extent: 328 pp
This thought-provoking book challenges the way we think about regulating cryptoassets. Bringing a timely new perspective, Syren Johnstone critiques the application of a financial regulation narrative to cryptoassets, questioning the assumptions on which it is based and whether regulations developed in the 20th century remain fit to apply to a technology emerging in the 21st.

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Contents
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This thought-provoking book challenges the way we think about regulating cryptoassets. Bringing a timely new perspective, Syren Johnstone critiques the application of a financial regulation narrative to cryptoassets, questioning the assumptions on which it is based and whether regulations developed in the 20th century remain fit to apply to a technology emerging in the 21st.

Johnstone argues that the financial narrative stifles the ‘New Prospect’ for the formation of novel commercial relationships and institutional arrangements, suggesting it is time to think about how to regulate for the development of a polymorphic ecosystem. Johnstone concludes with proposals for reform, positing a new DBA framework that facilitates industry aspirations while remaining sustainable and compatible with regulatory objectives.

Rethinking the Regulation of Cryptoassets will be an invaluable read for policy makers, regulators and technologists looking for a deeper understanding of the issues surrounding cryptoasset regulation and possible alternative approaches. It will also be of interest to scholars and students researching the intersections of law, technology, regulation and finance.

Critical Acclaim
‘Prof. Johnstone’s book on the regulation of cryptoassets forces us to think twice about the way we try to regulate the digital economy. He challenges the habit of the regulators to push new disruptive ideas and instruments into old frames and concepts, and invites them to move out of their comfort zone. Rethinking the Regulation of Cryptoassets is a complete account of the challenges we face in developing a crypto-economy and proposes a coherent and sustainable regulatory framework that ensures both market efficiency and technological relevance.’
– Eva Kaili, Chair of the STOA Committee, Rapporteur of the Blockchain Resolution of the European Parliament, Brussels

‘Cryptographic consensus technology presents extraordinary market opportunities but also raises a host of vexing regulatory challenges. Rethinking the Regulation of Cryptoassets maps this complex terrain and charts a way forward, offering a novel approach to the regulatory enterprise to protect against abuses while fostering innovation. Johnstone brings considerable legal, financial, and technological sophistication to the task, and his analysis is at once rigorous and accessible. This book will become essential reading on the future of cryptoassets.’
– Christopher Bruner, University of Georgia, School of Law, US

‘The crypto industry moves fast and requires regulatory frameworks that can cater to that pace. Prof. Johnstone brings forward a number of ideas that are worth reflecting on as cryptoassets are definitely here to stay.’
– Henri Arslanian, Global Crypto Leader and Partner, PwC

‘Johnstone provides a refreshing way to think about the regulatory limits of applying the standard financial narrative to a technology that is globally programmable but locally valuable. His DBA (Determined-By-Architecture) framework may help align regulation with the borderless possibilities of mathematics.’
– Pindar Wong, Chairman, VeriFi (Hong Kong) Ltd
Contents
Contents: About the author Foreword Preface Why cryptoasset regulation needs rethinking: an introduction PART I THE INITIAL JOURNEY Acquiring the tradition 2 Cypher fundamentals 3 Responses from the centre PART II THE PRIMARY ISSUES 4 Applying securities laws to cryptoassets 5 Regulatory building blocks and other concerns 6 Complexities in a developing technology PART III THE SECONDARY MARKET 7 An emerging market 8 Cryptoexchange models 9 The concept of an exchange 10 Regulatory concerns PART IV INFLUENCES AND CONSIDERATIONS 11 The ordering of progress 12 Ecosystem development 13 Incrementalism and paradigms PART V FUTURE DIRECTIONS 14 Responding to change 15 Proposals for policy development 16 The origin of cryptocommunity Suggested readings Postscript Index
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