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48 Tex. J. Bus. L. 1 (2019-2020)
Technology and Corporate Governance: Blockchain, Crypto, and Artificial Intelligence

handle is hein.journals/txjbus48 and id is 122 raw text is: 

                     Technology and Corporate Governance
                   Blockchain,  Crypto,  and  Artificial Intelligence

                      By: Mark  Fenwick  and Erik P.M. Vermeulen

       Over  recent decades, the on-going digital revolution has transformed many aspects
of everyday life. Think of the increased power and shrinking size of personal computers and
smartphones; the global expansion of the Internet and the new forms of social interaction that
have been created; and, the ready availability of massive amounts of cloud-based information
(Big Data), which is processed by automated algorithms for use in multiple settings.

       But, how  has the digital transformation affected the organization and operation of
business, and what does this mean for current regulatory frameworks, particularly those related
to corporate governance? And, how  are current and near-future technological developments -
think distributed ledger technologies, smarter forms of automation and artificial intelligence
- likely to disrupt the current corporate governance discussion? This paper explores these
questions and concludes that current corporate governance approaches need to adapt to these
technological and business developments in order to remain relevant.

Go  Digital!

       #goingdigital. This was the hashtag  used at a blockchain  event organized by  the
Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development   (OECD)  in Paris in mid-September
2018.2 It captures perfectly the challenge facing both individuals and organizations today.
We  all need to go  digital. Clearly, there are huge opportunities created by emerging
technologies. But, the speed and scale of current change means  that we often struggle to
understand and  adapt. Knowing  what to do is difficult when operating under conditions of
cognitive uncertainty about the meaning and effects of rapid technological change.

       This combination  of excitement  and anxiety explains why  the Paris OECD   event
attracted close to a thousand participants. No doubt there is enormous interest in #goingdigital.
Similar events are being held all over the world and they generate a great deal of attention.
Moreover, this interest cuts across diverse groups with very different stakes in digitalization.
On  one side are the old school regulators and other policymakers struggling to make sense
of new  realities and what it means for current rules and regulations.3 On the other are the
visionary founders of start-ups who (often) see their business-building as a mission to change
the world.4

       Corporate governance,  in particular, is a key site for this discussion and debate. Not
least, because it highlights both the importance and confusion created by recent technological
developments. There is a lot of interest in emerging technologies. But, what also seems clear,
is that the various different stakeholders in the corporate governance space are moving at
different speeds and in different directions. Everyone is aware that something important is
happening. However,  there is much less agreement on what the digital transformation means

'Mark Fenwick is Professor of International Business Law, Kyushu University, Japan, and Erik P.M.
Vermeulen is Professor of Business and Financial Law, Tilburg University, The Netherlands.
2 OECD BLOCKCHAIN POLICY FORUM, http://www.oecd.org/finance/oecd-blockchain-policy-forum-2018.htm
(last visited Mar. 18, 2019).
DEMOCRACY, (Wiebe E. Bijkeyet al. eds., Graham Burchell trans., The MIT Press) (2009).
4 Jessica Powell, The Big Disruption, MEDIUM (Oct. 2, 2018), https://medium.com/s/the-big-disruption/the-big-


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