This is Part Five in the series looking at Quant Network, where we look at Blockchain Standards, where the CEO of Quant Network Gilbert Verdian founded the ISO Standard TC307 which 53 countries are currently working towards. We also look at the European Union’s launch of the International Association for Trusted Blockchain Applications (INATBA) which Quant Network are a founding member of.
Part one can be found here and a link to the other parts can be found at the bottom of this article.
Why Standards are important
Standards play a crucial role in ensuring interoperability between DLT / Blockchain implementations as well as Non DLT / Blockchain implementations. It enables Blockchain platforms with guidance and best practices on what is required to achieve interoperability to reduce the risk of a fragmented ecosystem. It also prevents technology lock-in by providing options to move between technologies and during implementation, clients can align to standards which make it easier to implement with confidence in continued compliance.
The idea of using blockchain came from having to solve healthcare interoperability, at the time Gilbert and the folks at eHealth solved this problem by creating an enterprise service bus (ESB), which involved millions of dollars in investments and significant changes in infrastructure for what seemed like an imperfect (but best available) solution to the problem. At the time blockchain technology was in its infancy and standards were lacking, which is what led to Gilbert in initiating the standards work while in Australia (hence why Australia is the secretariat). Not only did Gilbert have the foresight to establish a standard, but he also knew that for blockchain to be widely adopted and be a real and lasting solution for solving interoperability for healthcare it itself needed to be interoperable
‘I see a potential similar to that of the internet in the early 90s. We’re at the cusp of something big, blockchain can change a lot of how the internet operates and a lot of how processes operate, we just don’t know what we can do yet’
This was done by authoring the ISO proposal to Standardise Blockchain and then establish a technical committee. The proposal was approved in October 2016 and the ISO/TC307 committee quickly grew from 5 to 53 countries and bodies such as the European Commission. These countries are outlined in the map below: (https://www.iso.org/committee/6266604.html?view=participation)
The ISO TC 307 is for blockchain as a whole not just specifically Interoperability. Within the structure there are multiple working groups each focusing on different Areas. Gilbert Verdian is the chariman for the ISO TC 307 Working Group for Interoperability of blockchain and distributed ledger technology systems
What is ISO Standard?
The International Organization for Standardization is an independent, non-governmental organization, the members of which are the standards organizations of the 164 member countries. It is the world’s largest developer of voluntary international standards and facilitates world trade by providing common standards between nations. Over twenty thousand standards have been set covering everything from manufactured products and technology to food safety, agriculture and healthcare.
Each country identified in the map above consists of a standards organisation that represents their country. The UK is led by the BSI (British Standards Institution) which represents UK economic and social interests across all European and international standards organisations.
Within the BSI, Gilbert Verdian is chairman for Blockchain and Distributed Ledger Technology. (https://standardsdevelopment.bsigroup.com/committees/50270820) Some example of organisations who are part of this committee are:
Any many more and these are just the companies involved with the UK Standards body, each of the 53 countries working on TC 307 will have their own members working towards the standard.
International Association for Trusted Blockchain Applications (INATBA)
Quant Network is a founding member in the European Union’s launch of the International Association for Trusted Blockchain Applications (INATBA).
The latest development happened at the INATBA incorporation on the 6th March 2019 in Brussels with 105 founding members and Gilbert Verdian was selected as an official signatory at the event. Other members of INATBA include Accenture, Accord Project, Alastria,Banco Santander, BBVA, Consensys, Enterprise Ethereum Alliance, Fujitsu, IOTA, Ledger, SAP, SIA, Swift, Telefonica, We.Trade and many more.
The International Association for Trusted Blockchain Applications is an initiative promoted by the EU’s European Blockchain Partnership — a collaboration of 26 EU countries as well as Norway, including UK, France, Germany, Sweden, the Netherlands, and Ireland. Its objective is to develop EU blockchain regulation and prepare for the launch of EU-wide blockchain applications.
INATBA will provide an avenue for harmonising and implementing blockchain best practice at a European and International level to avoid technological fragmentation, especially in banking and financial services. The Association will bring experts together and enable them to implement ideas and proposals for the growth of blockchain-based infrastructure and digital services. Global banks BBVA and Banco Santander were revealed to be joining the initiative after the EU Blockchain Roundtable on November 20th, 2018.
The objective of the Association is to enhance trust and innovation in blockchain and other distributed ledger technology. It will promote guidelines and specifications for interoperable blockchain and other distributed ledger technology infrastructures and applications that accord with the relevant principles of EU and international law; meet the highest standards of cybersecurity, privacy, and energy efficiency; and where liability and responsibility are clearly established through transparent governance models.
Quant Network has been a pioneer in setting the blockchain agenda for Governments by helping implement and foster mass adoption of distributed ledger technology. Firstly, by founding the Blockchain ISO Standard TC307 in 2015 where 53 countries now collaborate globally to implement a Standard that will be adopted globally by Government and technology and service providers. Quant Network will also drive to facilitate the collaboration of INATBA with ISO TC307.
The scale of INATBA is not just for the EU but International, supported by the EU (European Commission) to help with the following:
The below video is from Mariya Gabriel (the European commissioner for Digital Economy and Society) who was talking about INATBA and how Blockchain will be playing an essential role within the EU to resolve many problems faced currently.
Quant Network is a founding member of INATBA – Quant Network
Enterprise Blockchain. Interoperability. Overledger is the world’s first blockchain operating system (OS) that not only…
Home – INATBA
International Association for Trusted Blockchain Applications.
EU Blockchain Observatory and Forum
Gilbert is also a member of the EU Blockchain Observatory and Forum which is a European Commission initiative to accelerate blockchain innovation and the development of the blockchain ecosystem within the EU. He contributed to a recent report about Scalability, Interoperability, and Sustainability of Blockchains
A new technology can’t become successful on a mass scale without the right infrastructure. This includes such things as the technical hardware and software stacks, standards, the legal framework as well as governance best practices.
Through the European Blockchain Partnership the EU has begun to consider Member State cooperation towards the goal of a European Blockchain Services Infrastructure to support cross-border digital public services.
We think that government can play a positive role in helping to develop such an infrastructure through policy.
Standards. — Today if we want to go in the direction of multi-layered interoperable ecosystem of blockchains, both policy makers and the blockchain industry, ideally working together, should prioritise the development of standards. Among these, we think the most important will be standards for digital identities in a blockchain context, and for interoperability between blockchains.
In Part Six, I look at the core team behind Quant Network as well as their partnerships that they have been able to announce. You can view that here
Part One — Blockchain Fundamentals
Part Two — The Layers Of Overledger
Part Three — Verification and the Tokenisation of data
Part Four — Features Overledger provides to MAPPs
Part Five — Creating the Standards for Interoperability (This Article)
Part Six — The Team behind Overledger and Partners
Part Seven — The QNT Token
Part Eight — Enabling Enterprise Mass Adoption