Cointelegraph spoke to the newly appointed executive director of the European Commission’s international DLT association regarding his new role and the blockchain landscape in Europe.
The International Association for Trusted Blockchain Applications (INATBA), a distributed ledger technology initiative established by the European Commission (EC) last year, has appointed former Bitfury Group global ambassador Marc Taverner as the first INATBA executive director on March 5.
INATBA was launched through collaboration between the 26 members of the EC’s European Blockchain Partnership during April 2019. The association seeks to bring together industry leaders, policymakers, standard-setting bodies to support the mainstream adoption of distributed ledger technology across multiple economic sectors.
Cointelegraph spoke to Taverner to discuss his role as the INATBA executive director, the association’s objectives for the blockchain industry and being upstaged by his 15-year-old son while speaking in Germany.
Cointelegraph (CT): Can you give a brief description of the roles/functions that INATBA plays within Europe?
Marc Taverner (MT): INATBA is the only global organization equipped to convene public and private industry participants with the credible support of powerful advocates such as the European Commission, its Government Advisory Body, Academic Advisory Body and 170+ and growing membership base.
We essentially have four main functions: We maintain a permanent and constructive dialogue with public authorities and regulators that will contribute to the convergence of regulatory approaches to blockchain and other distributed ledger technology globally.
We promote an open, transparent and inclusive global model of governance for blockchain and other distributed ledger technology infrastructures that reflect the shared interests of stakeholders from industry, start-ups and SMEs, civil society organizations, governments and international organizations.
We support the development and adoption of interoperability guidelines, specifications and global standards, to enhance trusted, traceable, user-centric digital services. And we develop sector-specific guidelines and specifications for the development and acceleration of trusted sectorial blockchain and DLT applications in specific sectors.
CT: What are some of the tasks you will take on as INATBA executive director?
MT: “As executive director, I work closely with INATBA’s board of directors, working groups, government advisory board and academic advisory board to build a regulatory framework and constructive dialogue, in Europe and around the world, that supports the growth of blockchain technology in both the public and private sectors.
I will drive INATBA’s coordinated effort to engage key stakeholders, speak and participate in key industry conferences and convene the policymakers who will determine the future of this important emerging technology.”
CT: What do you see as the most critical regulatory issues concerning blockchain right now in your opinion? What changes would you like to see within the industry? And which segments of the industry would you most like to encourage?
MT: “There are many critical regulatory issues, of course. We believe the most critical issues are in the areas of finance, healthcare, education, energy, governance, identity, mobility, privacy, public sector, real estate, social impact, supply chain and interoperability.
“Broadly, we’d like to see the industry develop real-world use cases that increase engagement, build trust and advance the global implementation of the technology.”
CT: In what ways do you expect the European blockchain landscape will evolve/change in the coming years?
MT: “We expect that, with careful collaboration between the public and private sectors, that Europe will continue its deliberative but concerted embrace of blockchain as a tool to improve the systems and services that people use every day. Europe has truly been a global leader in advancing policies that support the technology’s growth. Working with them, we hope and expect that approach to continue.”
CT: Can you provide your proudest achievement within the crypto/blockchain space?
“When upon taking my 15-year-old son to a speaking engagement in Berlin, he upstaged me as he started to discuss blockchain, social models and his desire to travel to Mars with other speakers and attendees.”