A blockchain is a digital ledger, decentralized and disintermediated, shared by several actors, without a unique controller. It has been largely documented that using blockchains in a financial context has facilitated the swapping of intangible assets (cryto-currencies) without the control of a trusted third party like a bank.
Other applications of these new technologies aim not simply at replacing existing trusted networks but at establishing from scratch trust where it lacks completely. A good example is the traceability of all the moves of products, from factory to consumer. Retrieving the full control of globalized supply chains is a major health, ethics and environment stake, intimately linked to Illicit Trade issues.
If correctly applied, the blockchain technology can provide entrepreneurs with a sure way to organize the traceability and transparency of their supply chains, analyse them and detect malfunctioning, notably regarding Illicit Trade. However the first difficulty of the use of blockchains remains what was said by the French writer Boileau 300 years ago:
What is well devised is put forth clearly
And words to say it come easy
Through various and practical testimonies, the ITTA/ALCCI workshop of May 3rd will endeavour to « put forth » the usefulness of the blockchains to organize the fight against Illicit Trade.