We are the Muskoka Group
The Muskoka Group is an open platform for collaboration, education and innovation to help accelerate and drive the progress of blockchain technology for industry, government and society.
The group was founded August 24th-26th, 2016, when 16 blockchain practitioners, advocates, theorists and policy experts met at the family compound of Don Tapscott and his son Alex on Lake of Bays in Muskoka, Canada. The purpose of the gathering was to discuss how the blockchain ecosystem could more effectively move forward to ensure that this technology fulfills its potential. The group achieved consensus on a number of topics, recommendations and specific actions.
The Muskoka Group Manifesto
1. We believe that the Internet is entering a second era, bringing a new and radically different platform for business and other institutions that can take us through the next quarter century of human progress. At the core is the one of the most important innovations in computer science in a generation. It is the technology underlying digital currencies like Bitcoin or Ethereum – the blockchain. This technology platform is open and programmable. As such it holds the potential for unleashing countless new networks and applications, and has yet unrealized capabilities that have the potential to transform everything.
2. There are many challenges facing the full deployment of blockchain technology on a global basis. Some say this technology is not ready for prime time. Governments may attempt to slow, stop or usurp this technology. Research is needed into blockchain use cases and opportunities – horizontally such as for supply chains, asset management, marketing, and vertically within various industries. Most important, the blockchain ecosystem overall lacks the maturity to ensure that this resource is most effectively stewarded to ensure its enormous potential.
3. We believe in the need for stewardship of this resource -- stakeholders in this ecosystem can build organizations and networks to enhance and ensure progress. Decentralization does not equal disorganization. Like-minded people and groups can self-organize to voice their valuable perspectives, collaborate and solve problems in a bottom-up, multi-stakeholder fashion. Especially as the Internet provides new means and mechanisms to do so. Call it governance, stewardship, advancement, safeguarding, development or collaboration – it’s critical that stakeholders in the various blockchain ecosystems find more effective ways, methods, processes or even organizations to build a healthy ecosystem. It is critical that we all find more common interest and shift our thinking and action beyond our own parochial needs.
4. We believe in a set of principles for effective governance of this resource – volunteerism, self-organization, multi-stakeholder not controlled by governments or corporations, openness and inclusion, decentralization, meritocracy not status, rough consensus and a proclivity to take action. We define consensus on a topic – the lack of sustained opposition.
5. We support the Global Solution Networks (GSN) program as a helpful way of thinking about stewardship of this resource. These non-government, internet-enabled collaborations of corporate, NGO, government and social stakeholders are using the internet for good, and demonstrating the power of global solution networks to solve problems and even govern global resources. The GSN taxonomy is a useful framework and tool to assess the blockchain ecosystem, identifying its strengths, weaknesses and gaps and developing initiatives to improve its health. It points to the need for standards, knowledge, advocacy, scrutiny, policy, education, and other initiatives to move the ball forward.
6. We will continue this discussion and take voluntary steps to further the work of building a healthy ecosystem.
7. We welcome any individuals or organizations that agree with this manifesto to join us. Sign up with your information below!
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