For our collective future, we are trying to steer somewhere between “business as usual” and “degrowth”, envisaging a world where our living standards change remarkably little, but our resource use more than halves, through the “Lean Green Model”. To create this world, nothing can be thrown away or squandered. We will present a model in which physical goods are tied to information infrastructures, which ensure that they are reused, repaired, and resold over, and over, and over again by hundreds of different people before they are recycled.

Agenda track: 5 New models of economy & governance
Session type: New experimental models
Interaction level: Some – lots of discussions
Movement level: None
Screen need: Good to have

This project started from basic research on climate refugees and how to provision physical systems for food, shelter, water and so on as we start to have hundreds of millions of displaced people around the world. There is a deep relevance to these ideas beyond simply reducing our environmental impact.

At Mattereum we have defined and developed an end-to-end ecosystem that brings security and trust to the intersection of distributed commerce and trade of physical assets.

The Mattereum Protocol combines a precise definition of the state and properties of assets in the Mattereum Asset Passport which sets out the unique nature, or non-fungibility, of the asset, together with legally binding mechanisms for dispute resolution. This enables NFTs to be securely linked to the ownership of physical assets for the first time.

The long-term potential of this technology can help untangle the legal grey area that exists between “smart” online contracts and physical contracts.

This capability to extremely securely bind information to matter gives us the ability to take completely new economic models, including shared ownership and complex financialization, and implement them on top of the material goods of the day. Almost any policy objective, from carbon taxes to a shared economy can be implemented: it is the bedrock for all other kinds of political experiments.

We invite circular economy activists and blockchain people asking for more meaning and substance in the blockchain world to this session. Together, we will run through the “lean green” model, and look at some concrete early examples, running on the Ethereum blockchain.

After the festival, we would be very happy to work with anybody working in the circular economy space, and have cheap turnkey systems they could use for prototyping and proof of concept work.

Vinay Gupta is Founder and CEO of Mattereum. He is a leading figure in the blockchain space, having coordinated the release of blockchain platform Ethereum in July 2015. He is also the director of the Hexayurt Project, a 20 year old volunteer effort working in the refugee shelter space. Mattereum is an impact-driven venture capital-backed technology enterprise with a new protocol for digital trade. Mattereum was founded in 2017, and is based in London. The organisation is setting out to change the world by redefining the relationship between physical assets and distributed digital commerce.

Twitter: @Mattereum