Barbara Franzen
Barbara Franzen
Kantonsrätin FDP

Women in Blockchain

Meine Rede anlässlich eines Blockchain Events

I am very happy and thankful for the opportunity to introduce you to today’s Workshop on Blockchain technology, especially on women in blockchain. Of course our location speeks for itself. We are gathered at Zurichs Trust-square, one of the world’s biggest Blockchain centers. Zurich’s Trust-square is indeed one of the sponsors of today’s event, together with Procivis and the Female Section of Zurich’s Liberal Party, the FDP; these three partners form a successful cooperation having already been able to host two workshops, today’s being the third. My name is Barbara Franzen, I’m currently an elected member of the parliament of the Canton of Zurich and I’m running for our Liberal Party in the upcoming elections for the national parliament of Switzerland in October.

Today we would like to explore together yet even deeper the relatively new and very promising technology, the so called Blockchain technology. Our focus is not only to further understand the technology itself and its implications for our future, but also to ask how to  promote women in Block-chain technology.

The question always has to be how a technology can serve mankind at its best. And in today’s society we also must ask ourselves how technologies best serve the female aspect. I’m convinced that new technologies such as the block-chain industry will present both women and men great and equal chances. We must together – as teams and as individuals, but always as equals - strive to explore the block-chain technology. That new technologies present us all with great chances for a better future is a strong belief of the liberal party.

Let me just give you three examples of the importance of Block-chain technology:

1. Blockchain will enable medical companies, but also shipping companies, industrial manufacturers and food producers to seamlessly track their goods from the purchasing of raw materials to the end-user consumption, thereby allowing for far greater control, making all tracked processes tamper-proof and enabling much faster and targeted emergency responses to limit the public’s exposure.

2. Blockchain will allow full automation of previously highly manual, slow und error prone administrative processes, while its peer-to-peer nature will also allow circumventing previous middlemen, therefore accelerating transactions and making them far less costly. Thereby it will challengethe business models of established companies. This technology will also fundamentally change the auditing business, since the blockchain is by nature automatically auditable.

3. And of course krypto currencies which are based on block chain technology. Krypto currencies will enable theun-banked and financially underprivileged populations to become more financially independent. In many developing societies, this will be a massive boost to female independence. Many questions although remain: Will krypto currencies become mainstream payment methods, thereby challenging the supremacy of central banks and sovereign currencies?  Will China beget its own krypto currency thus challenging the US Dollar and the US’ role even further?

For all we know, we can compare the blockchain technology to the internet. When the internet came into the focus of the public in the late 1980ies, many were biased against it (the internet having started out as a military application in the seventies) and thought it was a fad for sending emails. Little did they know that the internet would change the world fundamentally. What if block-chain technology were to change our societies even more profoundly? With workshops like today’s I am convinced we will be well prepared for the certain block-chain future.