Why we’re building the Decentralization Research Center.
An Equitable Tomorrow:
Building a Decentralized Future.
The Decentralization Research Center (DRC) is a nonprofit organization that supports nonpartisan decentralization research and acts as a hub for critical stakeholders. Our mission is to encourage the equitable ownership, governance, and regulation of emerging technologies that impact our everyday lives.
We find ourselves at a unique moment in history. Recent developments in technologies like blockchain, artificial intelligence, and quantum computing have the potential to make them some of the most impactful achievements of our time. However, while fostering progress, these technologies have the potential for severe unintended consequences, including a concentration of power and wealth among the elite, the marginalization of diverse voices, and potentially destabilizing impacts on democracy. To create a more equitable future, we must ensure that the next wave of innovation is underpinned by principles of broad participation, fair reward distribution, and decentralized control. The DRC stands committed to working with industry, academia, and policymakers to help shape this future.
We seek to foster cooperation between the scholars, students, technologists, policymakers, and entrepreneurs who recognize the need for a more inclusive approach to the development of these technologies. Although many stakeholders are already generating research, running courses, and launching ventures that explore a more equitable path forward, much of their work remains siloed and disconnected.
The DRC’s mandate is to bridge that gap and create opportunities for innovators to collaborate, gain momentum, and guide the ownership, governance, and regulation of emerging technologies towards decentralization. We accomplish this by:
- Providing a trusted gateway for research-backed findings about decentralized technologies
- Hosting intimate events with stakeholders in collaboration with academic institutions, such as our recent events at the Harvard Kennedy School and Stanford Center for Blockchain Research, as well as our upcoming events at the University of Toronto and the University of Tokyo;
- Drafting, funding, and curating resources on decentralized technologies as seen in our DAO library; and
- Acting as a hub for communication between stakeholders and the media.
The DRC was formed in 2021 to focus on decentralized systems and the organizations and applications built upon them, known as DAOs. As more disruptive technologies became integrated into mainstream society, our mission quickly expanded to include a broader focus on decentralized technologies that have become an extension of our everyday lives. We have made strong headway by collaborating with leading institutions, like Harvard University, Stanford University, the University of Toronto, and the University of Tokyo, to host curated gatherings with leading academics, policymakers, and industry representatives. In addition, we created the foremost digital decentralization research library — a free resource to help educate the public about the topic of decentralization and its impact on our society.
Here is a timeline of our growth and work to date:
June 2021 — We co-host our first event, the Virtual DAO Summit, with the Stanford Center for Blockchain Research.
August 2021 — We begin funding, drafting, and publishing research focused on decentralization, which is organized in our decentralization research library. It is a public good that is freely available for all to use.
August 2022 — We co-host our first live summit, at Stanford University, with the Stanford Center for Blockchain Research, bringing together academics and industry to discuss challenges and solutions for organizations pursuing decentralization.
April 2023 — We co-host our second live summit, at Harvard University, with the Harvard Belfer Center and Safra Center for Ethics, bringing together academics, industry, and policymakers.
August 2023 — We host our third annual summit with Stanford University, which is focused on how decentralized tooling can be used by centralized institutions, bringing together academics, regulators, and industry leaders.
Future events — We are co-hosting events focused on decentralization and emerging technology at the University of Toronto and the University of Tokyo in November, 2023 and January, 2024, respectively.
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