"We at Smart Dubai are big believers in the potential of blockchain to disrupt the way we transact not only in the government but also in the private sector," said Zeina El Kaissi, Head of Emerging Technologies and Global Partnerships at Smart Dubai, speaking exclusively to AMEinfo on the sidelines of the Future Blockchain Summit 2019 in Dubai about the potential impact of blockchain, upcoming trends, and challenges facing the implementation of blockchain.
Applying blockchain to government used cases means that the way citizens are going to be interacting with this city is going to be disruptive. Zeina El Kaissi confirmed, "The way you apply for a business license, the way you purchase a home, the way you deal with your medical records – from hospital to hospital. So these are everyday, real-life citizen experiences and interactions that we believe the blockchain will help support through data sharing, through smart contracts, making it much easier for the individual to conduct any of these transactions with the government. This is something that's not only applicable to Dubai, but we're creating a role model and a benchmark for the world and this can be translated globally to other used cases as well."
Speaking about the challenges facing blockchain, Zeina El Kaissi added, "The challenges are not really inherent to the technology itself. What we're seeing is that once several network members come together to create a network where they can exchange the data and use the blockchain, this is where we are seeing the challenge around governance models. So questions are rising around ownership, particularly in relation to data – intellectual property, dispute resolution, the application of smart contracts and the agreement on the specifications of their contracts between the network members."