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Universal Basic Income, the notion that every person should be guaranteed a regular income regardless of whether they are working for it or not, is captivating to some and repulsive to others. Its supporters argue that having an unrestricted source of regular income for all will help mitigate the coming mass extinction of jobs due to automation and artificial intelligence, further stimulate the economy, and encourage entrepreneurism. UBI’s detractors believe that it would incentivize laziness and bolster the welfare state.

Regardless of the arguments for and against UBI, it all comes down to the almighty dollar. Who will pay for…

Is it really all about greed?

That seems to be the consensus opinion around bitcoin, not to mention the accepted view of it as catnip for money launderers, ransom seeking hackers, and drug dealers.

Top economists talk worriedly about market bubbles and bankers dismiss the digital currency as a ponzi scheme. Warren Buffet, everybody’s favorite financial sage, has said of cryptocurrencies, “What’s going on definitely will come to a bad ending.”

While there are certainly many valid criticism of bitcoin and its cryptocurrency cousins, there is another side of the coin. …

Much of the growing interest in bitcoin and other digital currencies has focused on individual financial gain. At the same time there is an exciting trend toward leveraging so-called cryptocurrencies for philanthropic purposes. Not only are a number of charities accepting bitcoin and other digital currency donations, but new philanthropic entities are emerging which utilize digital tokens and their underlying cryptography-based technology, called blockchain, in powerful and innovative ways. Over time these bold experiments have the potential to transform and upend the philanthropic sector.

Bitcoin fundraising

Over the last few years a number of charities and foundations have been trialing bitcoin donations…

A survey of the early stages of a financial revolution

Beyond the hype around Bitcoin, there is a quieter revolution taking place as various governments and industries explore the potential uses of digital currencies and their underlying blockchain technologies. Governments as diverse as Russia, Japan, China and Dubai are developing state cryptocurrencies to supplement (and maybe even eventually replace?) their more tangible fiat currencies. Meanwhile, a whole range of industries from banking and finance to insurance and big tech are looking to streamline systems, lower costs, and explore new revenue streams by leveraging tokenized systems and public and private blockchain platforms.

As with any emerging and disruptive technologies, there are…

Paul Lamb

Paul is a nonprofit management consultant, social entrepreneur, and writer.

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