The Power of Programmable Money

While stablecoins in and of themselves are incredibly cool and powerful, it’s their synthesis with other smart contracts on blockchains that really unleash the potential. These ‘lego bricks’ of the new economic system are being built by incredible creators and entrepreneurs all around the world.

Later this week we’ll be joined by the founders of three projects innovating with smart contract protocols and programmable money. Compound Finance founder Robert Leshner will join to talk about using stablecoins within decentralized credit markets, giving people and business access to credit on the open internet; Sablier founder Paul Razvan Berg will join to talk about their open protocol for streaming payments using stablecoins, unleashing powerful new models of how people and business can get paid, and finally, Kleros founder Federico Ast will join to talk about their smart contract based escrow system and decentralized arbitration model, enabling deeper forms of trusted and safe global payments built on the internet.

Listen to the episode now to learn more about the power and potential of programmable money!

Jeremy Allaire: Hello, and welcome to The Money movement. This is Episode 3 of The Money Movement a show where we explore the ideas and the issues that are driving this brave new world of digital currency and blockchains. Really excited for today's episode. The Power of Programmable Money. We've got some awesome guests that are coming on today to talk about that with us. I just want to set this up up a little bit.

In earlier episodes of the show we've talked about some of the big picture macro themes. We've also talked about some of the fundamentals of blockchains and stable coins and how they work. Just to remind folks how we're looking at this basically, when we think about these public blockchain infrastructures networks like Ethereum and what I think of as second and third generation blockchains.

As a business, you need to think about these as a new internet operating system. These are this new public networks that anyone can plug into, and they are like operating systems that people can build software on top of, but unlike centralized systems like hosting your server with Amazon web services, or a centralized system. These are these decentralized operating systems which is this really powerful infrastructure that we now have to build applications and really specifically applications that have to do with secure record keeping. With secure transactions. With value exchange. These public chains are really this new distributed compute engines and operating systems for this new class of financially-oriented and other types of applications like that on the internet.

We also previously talked a little bit about stablecoins. Stablecoins are a big theme here in The Money Movement, and really in many respects stablecoin are demonstrating to be the killer app of these public blockchains. Now today stablecoins like USDC like Tether and others as well are accounting for the majority of transactions on these networks, and so people have always said what's the killer app for blockchains. The killer app for blockchains is at this point clearly emerging as stablecoins. The ability for someone to take a digital dollar and transmit it anywhere on the internet in open and interoperable way. We've explored that a bit in earlier episodes. We're going to touch a little bit more on that again today, but a lot of times people ask me what's the big deal.

Why is it such a big deal to have these digital dollars? Like, don't we already have digital dollars? Don't we already have systems for making these payments? There's really two key concepts that are really the big deal. One is that these digital dollars behave more like digital content on the internet. Just like you can send a photo to any internet-connected device to anyone in the world, or open up a video call to anyone peer to peer, and that's a free service, or you could publish a piece of content on a web server, and anyone with a web browser anywhere can access it. That open interoperable nature is what makes the internet so powerful, and we're now bringing that to this digital cash and digital dollars. What that leads to is a world which will look a lot like the internet.

Ubiquitous, free, exchange of value from anyone to anywhere on the internet. That's the first part that is why is this such a big deal. The second part of why this is such a big deal is that for the first time ever we really have the building blocks for programmable money. Now once you have a digital dollar that exists on the internet as something that can run in these networks, these blockchain infrastructures also provide a way to write code and to write code that interacts with these digital assets in particular these digital dollars and stable coins. That code is referred to as smart contracts and smart contracts, we talked about a little bit in episode one, but are a really fundamental breakthrough, because this is code that can go up on the internet that is tamperproof and censorship-resistant and that these digital dollars can be programmed with.

There's incredible power from this idea of programmable money. We're in the early stages of exploring that. Many of the first ideas are really just coming alive on the internet right now. I'm really pleased today that we've got three guests. Each of whom are entrepreneurs and creators that are really demonstrating some of the breakthroughs that become possible with programmable money. Kicking this off, I'm really pleased to welcome Compound Finances founder and CEO, Robert Leshner. Welcome to the show Robert. Can you hear me?

Robert: I can hear you.

Jeremy Allaire: All right. Good. We have it. We have it live, that's great. Welcome to the show, Robert. How you doing?

Robert: I'm doing great.

Jeremy Allaire: That's awesome. I want to start really high level. We're going to talk about Compound a little bit, but maybe just starting at a really high level these basic building block ideas of smart contracts and programmable money. Obviously, those are central to the work you're doing but help the audience here understand these building blocks. What are these smart contracts? How do you think about this idea of programmable money?

Robert: Yes. You touched on a couple of good points earlier. The way I think about the smart contract is just a very simple computer program that is deployed on a blockchain, and in the same way that Bitcoin or another asset is deployed on a blockchain. In a way that anyone can see the history of it. Can see how it operates and can see what goes into this computer program.

These computer programs can be very simple or very complex. What's nice about them is that they work in a predictable fashion. For a simple computer program or smart contract, it could be something as basic as send money to somebody else on Fridays. Where a more complex smart contract or series of them taken together can produce extremely advanced functionality like build an interest rate market with advanced parameters to it.

Once this is set off is essentially rapid iteration and evolution of what's possible with programming money. For traditional FinTech startup being able to add logic to how money moves, and how it works, dealing with all the partners that are required is extremely laborious. It's slow, it's time-consuming and it's difficult. It's why you see a lot of very incremental improvements in financial products, but with these smart contracts what you're seeing is an entire community is able to build on each other's work. They're able to see the programs that have already been deployed, use them as components in their own- [crosstalk]

Jeremy Allaire: These are like money Lego bricks.

Robert: Yes. Think of them as like money Lego bricks. In traditional software engineering, we could think of these as libraries or components. Each of these smart contracts is a Lego brick or a library for other computer programs. All of this is building on itself, and we're seeing really fascinating new applications emerge very quickly in this open and shared financial sandbox.

Jeremy Allaire: Yes, it's fascinating obviously. I think one of the things that people have a hard time getting their head wrapped around I think people understand like okay these are like libraries, or these are like Lego bricks and people can use them. We have open-source code and we have these things, but I think the thing that is hard for a lot of businesspeople to understand is that these smart contracts run on this internet computer.

They run on this public operating system. Then once they're out there that anyone can interact with them as a shared resource or a shared good. That these are machine-enforced contracts that are on the public internet. I think it's a challenging concept for people to get over, and this idea of Compound which we'll talk more about in a sec. How would you explain that to someone who's not familiar with a decentralized virtual machine, or what have you?

Robert: Yes. I think the best way is with an analogy. When you deposit money into your bank account you have really no ability to understand all of the different pieces that go into providing you that financial service. All of the processes and Excel spreadsheets and databases and operations and all the things that go into it that create this very basic financial product for yourself.

Put a dollar into a bank, have a return 10 basic points here, whatever it's. There's mass of amounts of operations and work behind the scenes to create that for you. Whereas a smart contract on a blockchain is a very simple tool to create the same financial product or service. The difference is you can see exactly how it works. You can see the lines of code that compose the product or service. You can exactly how it operates. The community can audit it, vet it, and everyone can see exactly all of the logic that went into it and what is expected to happen.

Jeremy: This gets to trust issue because it's this publicly verifiable thing, this publicly auditable thing, you're dealing with people's value that public network and public transparency seems like a really key concept here.

Robert: Yes. It's one way of reducing surprises by increasing transparency and in traditional markets, we have a lot of other ways to reduce surprises, create trust and create stability. The advantage of these contracts on a blockchain is that they're extremely transparent and predictable. Long-term, I think that's a direction that most economic activities going to be shifted because it's extremely pure, it's extremely efficient. There's very little cost in administrating these contracts. It's in a lot of ways to what people want from financial systems, they want them to be predictable, fast, transparent, fair, and composable into more complex financial services

Jeremy: Open and globally accessible in the same way that the internet is, which is really key. Let's turn to Compound a little bit. I love to talk about Compound. I think stablecoin are a killer app. I think Compound is a killer app because you're taking this idea of these digital currencies and things like that and effectively, as you said, you're creating an interest rate market, but the way I like to think of it and you can explain this probably way, way better than I can.

This is like a decentralized marketplace for people to lend and borrow. Typically when we think about lending or borrowing, we think about a loan officer at a bank, and we think about all this complexity but you've created a marketplace and there's no company, it's just software that exists on the internet. Talk to us about where did Compound come from? Where is it today? What does it do? Maybe just in really basic terms also for just a person who runs a business, what can they do with this?

Robert: That's a great question. Compound is an interfreight market and what it enables people or applications, or financial participants to do is to borrow an asset instantly and programmatically using another asset as collateral. In traditional markets, you see people using houses as collateral and using securities as collateral, and accessing money using assets that are well-understood. Compound takes this functionality and puts it in a blockchain, in an open, transparent series of computer programs that anyone can see how they work and interact with them themselves.

It enables people to very seamlessly borrow an asset instantly on a blockchain using another asset. We see that it's a common occurrence where people will say, "Oh, I have a use case to settle a trade or to settle an international financial use case, or I need liquidity and they can borrow a stablecoin or another crypto asset from Compound programmatically. We see this replicating a lot of existing financial market functionality but in a way that's accessible to anyone in the world programmatically.

Jeremy: It's really profound. There's a marketplace for borrowing and lending. It exists and is enforced entirely by code on the public internet. Anyone can inspect it to see if it's fair, if it works, if it's trustworthy, et cetera. That's, in a sense, if you combine it with stablecoins like USDC, you now have the ability for potentially billions of people around the world to tap into a lending market with a smartphone and a digital wallet. That was just something that was inconceivable, maybe for them in the past.

Robert: All of this was inconceivable just years ago. I think the pace of financial innovation that's occurring with smart contracts and stable coins it's a breakthrough.

Jeremy: Maybe talk a little bit about with Compound today, we talk about stablecoins as a killer app. How much are stablecoins used with this Compound protocol today?

Robert: Stable coins are the dominant form of economic activity that we're seeing. People like to borrow a stable asset. They like to borrow a dollar instead of borrowing a volatile cryptocurrency and people like earning an interest rate on a stablecoin, on a dollar. What this creates is it allows anyone in the world to have the same access to the same financial service. No matter where you are, you're always able to access the same interest rate as someone else anywhere in the world. Every country has its own currencies. What we're seeing is a lot of demand internationally and domestically for people to access a US dollar-based return or a US dollar-based ability to borrow predictably in a safe and stable way. We've seen over a billion dollars activity in Compound so far since launching the protocol almost exactly one year ago, which has exceeded all of our expectations.

Jeremy: Yes. It's amazing. I won't ask you to make predictions on what the next 12 months or 24 months looks like, but clearly, this is on a pretty dramatic growth curve and really, really, really exciting. It's awesome, Robert, thank you so much for joining today and sharing your ideas in this space of programmable money, and congratulations on the incredible work that you guys are doing. I wish you continued great success.

Robert: Thanks, [unintelligible 00:16:09]

Jeremy: Take care. Pretty interesting stuff here. I think we're seeing these Lego bricks, the birth of these Lego bricks coming together, and building blocks that you can use stablecoins with lending protocols. We're going to look at a few more here today. We're going to shift gears for a moment and talk about another really full powerful and innovative idea, another Lego brick, if you will, in this new world of composable programmable money protocols and that's something that has only just become possible with programmable money and stablecoins on blockchains and this idea of streaming money and streaming payments. I'd like to welcome and I'm excited to have on the show Paul Razvan Berg, the founder, and CEO of Sablier. Welcome to the show, Paul.

Paul: Hey, Jeremy thank you for having me.

Jeremy: Yes, absolutely. Funny enough, my last business before doing this blockchain and digital currency thing was a streaming video company. The streaming protocols and the ability for people to access things on demand and to be able to do that over the internet and for a person to connect with another person and stream people have gotten used to that idea.

Back when I was starting that last company, which was way back in 2004, the idea of streaming your television show or having a streaming video call, these were science fiction or people were skeptical of these things, but the idea of streaming was pretty new. Now we have this idea of streaming money and streaming payments and intuitively, it makes a ton of sense to me, which is there are moments in time and scenarios in your life as an individual, or as a business where you don't want to have a giant payment, but you might want to have that payment metering itself out in different ways.

I guess the existing financial system isn't super well set up to support something like that. You came up with this idea of streaming payments or maybe other people had the idea and you executed on that idea with Sablier and I'm really excited. It's a very powerful idea. Maybe just first give the audience a sense of what does this innovation enable?

Paul: Sure. Before I do that, the video streaming company is a very good analogy because we like to say that just like you can stream movies on Netflix and stream music on Spotify so you can stream money on Sablier. What we do is a protocol and a UI for money streaming, which means in a simple form, payments by the second, but payments, which are continuous, trustless, and autonomous, they don't require human input. In fact, if you want to interact and iterate our protocol into your own application, you don't have to ask us for permission. You can just read our docs.

Jeremy: This is one of these Lego bricks. This is out there on the internet. It's a protocol. I want to come back to that in a minute, but anyone can tap into this. This isn't like, I have to do a deal with you guys. It's just like you've created something that people can plug into.

Paul: Exactly. You can just check out our Ethereum smart contracts. We have an open accommodation for that. We have seen people coming up with use cases that we haven't thought about when we launched the company in the first place. That was exciting to see.

Jeremy: Help paint the picture.

Paul: Sure.

Jeremy: What does this allow for?

Paul: We initially thought about using Sablier for things like continuous payroll. When you're in this remote work environment with people working across borders is very hard to enact trust because you can start working today, but maybe you're paid in two or three months. With Sablier, that problem becomes our problem because you start to stream, and if the employee doesn't execute, you can just cancel the stream and vice versa. If the company doesn't pay you, you can just like stop working. As we grew the protocol over time, we have seen people using this for things like auctions.

Where people have been bidding up the way that specific idea where it was that people were auctioning literally money and saying that I will give you that money back on Sablier as a stream. You just like have to bid it higher up and higher up. Somebody else used this for incentivizing people to reply to our emails. If you are replying faster, the stream was giving you more money the faster that you replied. There are many interesting thing that you see happening when you have an open protocol on the Ethereum Blockchain.

Jeremy: Most people think about getting paid if you're in an advanced economy it's like I have to go to my payroll company, and I have to set up a direct deposit and there's all this stuff. It's like every two weeks and it's delayed. We started to see obviously the mobile internet and other things have made like gig economy, more flexible forms of work like all possible.

It seems to me like what you're creating is something that any business or any person who conducts work could really benefit from this idea that they're able to-- As tasks are complete, or as work is completed, or these very flexible forms work become possible and it's not some big complex overhead. It's just as simple as turning on and off and dialing up and down these streams.

Paul: Exactly. You can just set up a stream in less than one minute if you have the tokens, and go to our UI on Sablier the finance. Exactly, it's very easy.

Jeremy: Let's talk about the token, so you guys support USDC, I believe?

Paul: Of course. Sablier is compatible with any ERC-20 token.

Jeremy: A lot of different scenarios there, but let's just take the stablecoin one for a moment. I'm a business and I basically can connect to this protocol. I can load value into it in advance, and then I can stream out and release funds based on things that are happening, events in my business, or work completed, or other things.

Paul: Yes. In v1, you just like have to have the USDC tokens upfront and you select a duration, and we will calculate for you a specific payments rate per second. From that moment on, the contract will just move that money on a per-second basis for your recipient. In future versions, we will have multiple kinds of streams where you can set the payment rate per second by yourself, but for now, that's how it works. You have to preset the streaming period yourself.

Jeremy: I see. I see. It's very, very cool. Because this is like a protocol as we talked about, it's a Lego brick, developers can integrate directly to this as well.

Paul: Precisely. Yes. If you're at the Hackathon, we would love to talk to you and I'll show you how we can use this into your own depth.

Jeremy: Circle is having a Hackathon-

Paul: Awesome.

Jeremy: -soon for Circle APIs and USDC. We'll make sure that people are hacking with your protocol. It's really exciting. I think as you mentioned before in this remote work environment which is obviously the new normal. In a world where trust and risk are coming under attack, there's a lot of risk and trust is coming under attack. Clearly, we're moving to these more distributed workforces.

Every week we're hearing announcements of leading technology companies saying, "Hey, we're going to go distributed." This is all going to change the nature of work, continue to change the nature of work. Where do you see this going? Do you imagine that this protocol just becomes something that lots and lots of different companies are using to innovate in their own business models, and their own employee, and, or flexible worker relationships?

Paul: My take on that is that Sablier varies very well with this. Another movement that is happening within the Ethereum ecosystem and that is a DAO movement with these so-called decentralized autonomous organizations. I'm not necessarily rooting for let's burn the ship down and forget about all the old company stock formation and all of that.

Those are very good processes, but I think that DAOs can complement the company stock very, very well. You can have this global platform where the Ethereum DAO becomes the proxy between all these countries and of course Sablier can be used with any DAO. You just need to sign two or more transactions to cover our contract, but that's it.

Jeremy: I'm very excited about that. As I'll mention later, next week, we have the nature of the corporation and the age of blockchain, and we've got Argon, and OpenLaw, and some others, and actually Clarice who's joining us. Claris is joining us momentarily touching into some of these decentralized forms of how do you operate a decentralized organization. It's really, really exciting. It's really awesome, Paul. I'm really excited that you're able to share with us today what you're working on. I'm really excited to see where it goes. Thank you so much for joining us and hope to see you really soon.

Paul: Likewise. Thank you for having me, and thank you for spreading the word about our money movement here.

Jeremy: Absolutely. Cheers, Paul.

Paul: Bye-bye.

Jeremy: Bye-bye. Awesome. Really interesting ideas, obviously. When I think about all these things, these are all really new ideas. Robert shared, like Compound launched a year ago, already a billion dollars of activity in that. Sablier protocol really new and so many interesting ideas happening with it. I like to think back to-- if you guys can remember it was like 2007, actually like 2008, not the financial crisis, but there was a set of technologies that converged all at the same time. The iPhone had been out but it was just like, you could only use it with the apps that they had, and it was on a slow network connection.

The iPhone 3G came out and you could have a faster connection and they put a GPS chip in there which other phones had done, but they also connected it to an app store. You could create a software on it. It was those three things combined that allowed creative entrepreneurs to invent things that transform society that no one had really thought of. Or maybe if they thought of them, they couldn't execute them. It gave us Uber.

It gave us the sharing economy and really dramatic changes happened in the nature of work, in the nature of how corporations function. I really feel like what's happening now with programmable money is really equivalent. We're seeing some powerful new building blocks when they converge together that are going to allow people to do some amazing things. Our final guest here is also working on a set of Lego bricks that I think are really critical to everyday payments and commerce. Joining us from Buenos Aires is Kleros Founder and CEO, Federico Ast. Welcome to The Money Movement, Federico.

Federico: Hello, Jeremy, great to be here. I couldn't help but notice that you have a Kleros logo behind you [unintelligible 00:28:47] logo. [laughs]

Jeremy: It was all part of the product placement idea.

Federico: Good production. [laughs]

Jeremy: Thank you for joining us today. It's really, really awesome to have you on. I want to just start talking a little bit about-- Just first this issue of trust which came up in the prior conversation. We've talked a lot about this issue of trust, and how blockchains and stablecoins can change some of that, meaning you can use a trustless network to make a transaction between another party at the speed of the internet with a final irreversible settlement which is extremely powerful.

In the current environment being able to have these digital dollar transactions with people around the world instantly, securely is really powerful except when there's not entire trust that's there. I think a big part of the decentralization movement, and a big part of The Money Movement, if you will, is this idea of eliminating centralized counterparties and enabling more peer-to-peer transactions. One of the things that comes up is, "Well, what if there's not 100% trust there? What if there's some contingency on a payment?"

Typically, we use banks or we use trust companies, we use escrows. We have these other ways to do that and you have, it sound like, built a really powerful Lego brick, which is a escrow system, and there's more to it, obviously, than that. We will start with that. You've created an escrow protocol that's compatible with stablecoins like USDC that helps with scenarios where there isn't 100% trust. First, just tell us about this and how this works at a really high level.

Federico: Sure. A big part of the transaction world is about creating trust, and this requires ways to solve problems where there is not a straightforward solution. If I hire you to make a website, for example, on a decentralized e-commerce platform, and there is a dispute with you and I because I claim that you didn't comply with the specifications, smart contracts cannot really solve this in an automated way. You need some human layer verification that's going to be analyzing the evidence and the claim and voting who is right.

This is an important piece of governance for all of these trusts to be created in the decentralized ecosystem. Kleros is this court system that's going to provide some human verification and some human decision for claims where there is subjectivity, and one of them could be the e-commerce, or the website, or service delivery, but there are lots of them. For example, we are in the world of decentralized finance and you have people from all around the world financing projects through token sales. Maybe, they claim that the team didn't comply with what was promised so, should the next payment be released or not?

You need some human layer for verification and decision there. In order for this decentralized world, The Money Movement to move forward, you need this fundamental piece of governance to solve these kinds of problems and that's what we are trying to do.

Jeremy: This is fascinating. Again, we're taking these ideas of smart contracts and we're saying there's a problem, and the problem is sometimes you need to make a judgment about whether work was performed or whether something that someone promised to do has been fulfilled, and you want to lock the payment in some way where both parties can see, "Okay, the funds are there," and say the stablecoin, like USDC, is there and you can see it. It's good funds. Then, you need to have both parties agree, "Okay, the work is completed," and then, that can be released. That basic use case, it sounds like is supported in Kleros protocol.

Federico: We use it, for example, ourselves in the company, when we hire some freelancer to do some translation for us. We put the money into the escrow, and then, if everything goes right, the freelancer gets the money, we are happy, we release the payment. If there is a disagreement on the quality of the service, this is going to be solved by the court of Kleros where jurors are going to analyze the job that was done and decide. This is something that we are using today and solve this kind of problems.

Jeremy: This leads to the other really big idea here, which is essentially, how can we--? I use different analogies. Back when e-commerce marketplaces came out, you had eBay and then, Alibaba, and Amazon sellers. Early on, if I was buying something on eBay, how do I know that the person who says they're selling me this autographed baseball, or whatever that is, how do I know that they're legit? There were these trust and reputation systems. There was community policing, there's reputation. There's these things to do that.

It didn't require a court system, in some ways, but it did rely on these digital signals or other things to do that. In some ways, it sounds like what you're doing is you're taking it to the next level, which is really any kind of transaction that can happen between parties, whether it's people or businesses or others that happens on the internet, you can introduce a decentralized arbitration system where people are incentivized to actually make the right judgment or make a judgment for truth.

Federico: That's interesting that you mentioned eBay, or every commerce platform or company because essentially, they are courts. If you have a dispute with another user in the platform-

Jeremy: The platform is the court.

Federico: -there is a internal court, a private court where someone, some moderator or some customer-service employee, is going to make a decision in a fully private way with a fully private process where you can't have the way, as a user, to influence the process. You don't even know what is the process.

Jeremy: It's the court of eBay, it's the court of PayPal, it's the court of Amazon.

Federico: We don't see that as a court because we see that as customer service but if you think it through, it's basically a private court. Take this out of this black box, put it on the blockchain so everyone can know how the decision is going to be made and everyone can know that this is going to be made in a transparent way, and that the users who are going to make the decision are not influenced in a way and they have the incentive to make the decision in an honest way.

This is what Kleros is trying to do. This system that now is centralized, in a decentralized way with the procedural warranty that it's going to be conducted in the way that it was said it's going to be done and the blockchain supports that. Just one comment on how it works. You have different courts within the Kleros system, and users can stake a token into a court and this gives them the right to be drawn as a juror in that court randomly among all of those who also staked the token.

Those who are selected, they're going to have the right to be the jurors in the case. Then, there is a whole bunch of game theoretical defenses against different types of attacks because as this grows, more and more people are going to try to abuse the system so there is lots of research put into that to work correctly.

Jeremy: Just thinking about this out loud a little bit, we've seen these big open platforms emerge like YouTube or blogging platforms, or even take Uber. It's a platform where people can connect to these platforms and generate value for themselves in different ways. If you're really good at creating content, you might earn ad revenue. These sort of micro-streams of income. Is your idea that people around the world broadly, that becoming an arbitrator can become a source of income for them by participating in a decentralized arbitration system?

Federico: Absolutely. If you are some person from the Philippines or from my city, from Buenos Aires, and you have the expertise to adjudicate website disputes, to follow with the previous example, I could make money by being an arbitrator in these disputes. This is a very valid source of income for a lot of people who are around the world and trying to make money in the global economy. Now they can receive payments and make payments very cheaply with, of course, crypto, and they can do escrow transactions with USDC, of course. This is a great way for people around the world to be integrated into the global economy.

Jeremy: It's really, really interesting. People everywhere can monetize their expertise and monetize their trustworthiness, and participate in building this much more resilient infrastructure for how commerce happens.

Federico: They can make money and at the same time enable this money movement to move forward by providing governance services for lots of transactions to be done with trust and security, and everyone can participate. This doesn't discriminate against anyone.

Jeremy: A big part of this obviously, with public blockchains and stablecoins and these permissionless protocols is this inherently global nature, and this idea of entering into commerce transactions, relationships that are independent of any nation-state, anyone. It seems like you're really helping create a Lego brick, a building block, in this programmable money universe that really helps us move in that direction.

Federico: Yes, I'm very happy to do so. Also, I'm from Buenos Aires and I live in Buenos Aires. This is a country which had so many problems with currency and with government. I see really the pain points here and the problem that Kleros can solve and the opportunities that it can bring for inclusion for lots of people. That's what we are trying to do.

Jeremy: We explore a lot of these sort of global macro issues here in The Money Movement, as well. As we know, the global macro issues, the stresses that are going to happen on currencies, on sovereign governments, on civil society. As a result of the economic crisis and the health crisis, it's going to create an environment where people want to participate in the global economic system. They want to participate in labor and value exchange and other things but it may even be that in some cases, their own governance systems are weakened and not trustworthy so some really powerful stuff. This is super, super exciting, Federico, I'm really pleased that you could join us here today to share what you're working on, and really excited to see how it develops. Thanks so much.

Federico: Thank you for having me, Jeremy.

Jeremy: Absolutely. Well, so fascinating, fascinating things from a decentralized lending market to really innovative infrastructure for how value can be streamed flexibly based on work to a decentralized system for escrow transactions and adjudicating those fascinating stuff. We're obviously in the early innings of this innovation creative entrepreneurs, engineers, and others are building right now. This is clearly a massive phase of development that's happening. These protocols and smart contracts really are Lego bricks so every one of the guests here, each one of the things they're working on, someone can tie those all together and build something with that as well and combine that obviously, with things like circles, API's, USDC starts to really make some interesting things possible.

I think as I mentioned before, this is leading us into territory which just hasn't been possible before so we're excited to see. One of the things in particular that we're excited about, and we sort of touched on a little bit in some of the session today, which is this development of a new kind of infrastructure around corporate forms, the way in which organizations themselves are set up, the way people are incentivized, compensated, governed, some really interesting innovation happening there. We're going to be talking about that next week and I'll share more. First, just wanted to let everyone know next week, we have a special edition. We have two episodes, The Money Movement next week.

The first is a special edition, which is actually going to be Tuesday at 9:00 AM. It's on some of these bigger macro themes. It's full reserve banking, narrow bank, digital currency, charters, and the China model. With the Chinese digital currency system, we have an incredible group of guests. We have a senior research member from the Bank of England, Michael Kumhof, who's also done pioneering work at the IMF, including pioneering work, looking at how full reserve models of banking actually can lead to less debt, fewer recessions, and higher output. We're going to talk to him about that and we're going to talk to him about the connection of that to digital currency models, and central bank money that Baxter's or currency models.

Then related, we're going to be joined by the IMF's Tommaso Mancini-Griffoli who is a senior member of the capital markets and market infrastructure team at the IMF and he's done a lot of pioneering work for the IMF on stable coins, Central Bank, digital currency models, and in particular, this idea of narrow banks. The idea that there's a special kind of bank charter that is specific to firms that might issue stable coins. It's a full reserve banking model that backs that. Some interesting proposals that have come out of the IMF around this that I think are quite resonant these days, as we see the growth in stable coins.

Then last but not least, we're going to be joined by [unintelligible 00:43:44], Chief Economist at Wangen blockchain. He's also Associate Research Fellow for the People's Bank of China. He is a deep FinTech expert out of China and has also published extensively on the new Chinese digital currency DCEP. And is going to be bringing perspective on DCEP, which is also a full reserve model and the implications for that for FinTech, the banking sector, and of course, for all of us around the world. Then next on Thursday, we're going to explore the future of corporations in the age of blockchains. This idea that blockchain infrastructure makes it possible to establish new kinds of corporate forms.

We have some really exciting guests for that as well. Professor Jason Potts from RMIT University in Australia. He's done really pioneering work on the microstructures of corporate forms, and in particular, what blockchain infrastructure, in particular, permissionless public blockchain infrastructure is going to allow us to do in rethinking the nature of what a firm even is. He's going to introduce that. Then we're joined by Luis Cuende who's co-founder of Aragon, which is a really pioneering project in the construction of these decentralized autonomous organizations, and really allows any type of new organization to form and be entirely governed and run by smart contracts on blockchain, which is a very powerful idea.

Then finally, Aaron Wright, who is co-founder of OpenLaw. OpenLaw is a infrastructure and a set of open-source code that sits at the intersection of the existing legal system and smart contract-based models and really finding a way to bring what are actual contracts into smart contracts and be able to execute more and more of how we run the world on these blockchain, so it's going to be an excellent show and really looking forward to having those guests. Until next week, stay well. Stay safe and stay informed. Thank you.


[00:46:21] [END OF AUDIO]

Federico Ast
CEO, Kleros
Paul Razvan Berg
Founder & CEO, Sablier
Robert Leshner
Founder & CEO, Compound Finance

Get more insights in your inbox. Sign up today.