Digital Euro: Prospects for the Future and the Threat of Deglobalization

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Chapter And Authors Information

Athanasios Davalas

Yannis Charalabidis

Department of Information and Communication Systems Engineering, University of the Aegean, Greece
Digital Euro: Prospects for the Future and the Threat of Deglobalization
From the Edited Volume
Edited By:
Dr. John Walsh
Content

Introduction

The exploitation and availability of new technology is an essential source for various startups, especially on how they can generate new ideas for their business. Therefore, an already existing technology to help them is led by IoT, which is meant to create a difference in how they approach business and run it all together. In addition, the combination of the Al and the various technologies like blockchain will yield results in business operations. However, the interaction of these forms of technologies is meant to restructure the preexisting environment economically, which in the long run is meant to create new business opportunities for the startup business. Such success will be achieved only through the enhanced innovations pushed by citizens’ increased liking of digital payments. Furthermore, banks like the European Central Bank and central bank are also meant to participate in the digital currency, like the establishment of the digital Euro. Due to this, the paper looks into the various natures and future of the Digital Euro in addition to considering the implications under unpredictable circumstances such as the threat of deglobalization.

First, the digital Euro is intended to provide a technological infrastructure that allows the euro area to conduct digital transactions with the eventual goal of making cross-border electronic payments a reality. The underlying idea is that digital currencies such as Bitcoin could eventually replace national currencies. However, digital currencies require trust and familiarity to be adopted by the general public. As such, lacking trust in national governments and central banks may lead people to seek alternatives such as digital currency. This means that the Digital Euro would have to meet the demands of both the public and private sectors. Moreover, it would have to remain resilient in threats like deglobalization. Therefore, business leaders must be prepared for unexpected scenarios, and plans must be prepared accordingly.

The second assumption is that deglobalization threatens national economies. Technological developments are increasingly affecting trade flows across borders. Technology-enabled trade is expected to continue growing due to increased demand for foreign goods and the widening gap between supply and demand domestically. With this in mind, measures must be taken to ensure that national economies can still compete on an even footing with countries worldwide. This includes ensuring that local industries remain competitive through innovation, automation, and tax compliance (both on imports and exports). Furthermore, government policies towards deglobalization should be considered carefully since they can encourage or hinder growth at home.

However, though the replacement of the other forms of payments will not take place, the digital currencies will be able to complement them, making it essential for various startup businesses to appreciate the newly generated concepts and apply them in building new and well refurbished business models. Considerably, the Digital Euro or other applied currencies digitally are known to be associated with Blockchain technology combined with advanced technology. The applications of IoT, Al, are meant to bring a new dimension into the use of business models so that new starting businesses can perform. Therefore, the paper needs to present a rational method that is meant to create an easy way of establishing a ‘programmable Digital Euro’ that will be incorporated into the existing processes of banks to give ideas to startups.

Reasons for Issuing a Digital Euro

The key drivers when using the ECB are the existing digital transformation and the sovereignty and independence of the European economy, which operates towards establishing the Euro to be more stable and available to consumers and businesses. Therefore, through the use of the ECB, it looks at establishing a digital currency that can replicate other existing forms of the Euro and the developed infrastructure. In addition, there is a need to allow the development of new business opportunities which will combine the various cases for startups to be operational. Hence, if the digital currency is incorporated with the payment and other business operations, it will automatically breed results in terms of profits. The existence of competition, especially from the digital currencies of other dominant countries like China, is needed to promote the sovereignty of the Euro, which will encourage the development of innovative ideas. This will contribute to developing essential and innovative ideas in the active European industrial activities (Bitcom, 2020).

The reduction in the application and exploitation of money explains increased dependence on the other forms of payments in the euro area. Hence, the evolution of the digital Euro would be able to serve more roles like the complementary form of payment, making it able to match the required features of money. The main ones include facilitating offline payments and being efficiently used by vulnerable groups. Furthermore, the payment should be able to be free of charge and also assure there is privacy when used (BitCom, 2020). In addition, the currency has to have a minimum circulation cost which is going to guarantee the privacy of the data and the users and also be able to allow for fast and prompt payments.

Introducing the digital Euro will establish a different option mainly for exploiting the already euro-dominated central bank currency, electronic money, and payments from commercial banks. In addition, the digital Euro will be able to establish a reliably different form of exchange that will be able to create a storage value for the existing euro area. Furthermore, the Euro will inhibit other private organizations that the European financial institutions do not regulate from establishing payment solutions for the monetary euro area, which might be challenging and risky for foreign exchange. The giving out of digital Euro will be able to promote the required autonomy of European markets, hence enhancing independent financial decisions.

The existence of internet threats like cyber-attacks, pandemics, natural calamities, and other events that are different, especially in threatening financial flow, encourage the issuing of the digital Euro. In many circumstances, the challenges could reduce the utility of having online banking and even the effective withdrawal of cash from the teller machines. Due to this, it might affect the facilitation of retail or wholesale payments, thus reducing citizens’ trust in the existing monetary systems. Therefore, there is a need to establish the view and understanding that the digital Euro should be used with cash which will be able to create a different view on the dependable payment methods in case there is a failure in utility. This implies that the digital Euro can be discharged through cyber solid security features unique from other payment methods. The other role of the digital Euro is that it can create an environment for the promotion of the international relevance put on the Euro by stimulating the exploitation and application of the Euro through overseas investments (ECB, 2017). Hence this necessitates that the digital Euro be availed more passed the euro dominated geographical area so as it can match the goals of the already existing and operating Euro dominated system.

Digital Euro Functional Design Possibilities

Some characteristics remain essential to the digital Euro, and they include access. In this case scenario, the users could be able to access the Euro differently, or they can be able to do it indirectly through supervised intermediaries. The privacy should be certain by enhancing the functionality, where the structure operators can allow given transactions to be facilitated without revealing the hidden characteristics of the parties involved. Having some transactions would be able to require the identities of the clients involved to be put on paper so that no law is broken in the process. The digital Euro also needs to be regulated so that it should not be used as a form of investment which will help avoid turning commercial bank money into digital Euro. Preventing specific suspicious individuals’ access to their services would mean that the use would be limited to particular residents, especially in financing terrorist activities. In addition, having restricted access implies that it can still be used in international standards, especially by members not from the European Union or generally the members of such countries visiting.

Exploiting the digital Euro will require the transfer of mechanisms that would be generally account-based or openly beard during transactions. The account-based system understands that it can work by involving a third party to have records of the user’s holdings and then assure the financier only if the funds transfer has been validated. However, the bearer instrument is understood to let the participants who are serious players, that is, the payer and payee, be able to confirm various transactions. Understanding the device used in transacting, then the digital Euro is used as a web-based service that works the same as smartcards. Furthermore, a digital euro can be transacted through the utility of web-based service providers, ensuring that they services are synchronized. The digital Euro is also supposed to be availed for offline use to keep off from leaking transacted details that the payer makes to the payee from being shared with third parties. In addition, the digital Euro needs to give space for the monetary policies’ remuneration which will enhance financial stability and develop the established structural abilities that are relative and accommodative in use. The general concern is to enable the ecosystem to become an uncontrolled investment place.

The Technical and Organizational Approaches to Digital Euro Services

The look at the various designs for the use and execution in use of the digital Euro, then there is a need to appreciate the abilities and levels of the various back-end infrastructures used and the established solutions for specific end users. Therefore, the giving out of a digital euro has to be primarily regulated by the established euro operating system. In addition, the parties supervised mainly through the central bank should be notified primarily in knowing the identity of users and the transactions tied to the infrastructure ran predominantly by the central bank. Regarding security, only two methods can be deliberated on for the stable bank end infrastructure: the centralized and decentralized system. The understanding of the centralized system is that it functions by guaranteeing that the transactions involving the digital Euro are noted in the designated euro register. On the other hand, the decentralized approach, automatically the euro system, has the authority to establish rules to settle the incurred digital euro transactions. The understanding of the end user access solution is that there is the back-end infrastructure; hence this might bring a variance in the models used for the transaction. In many cases, the euro system will require a different view, especially in ensuring that the end user accesses are utilized so that services are available globally.

Disruptive Technologies of IoT, Al, and Blockchain for Digital Euro
Internet of Things

The understanding of the internet of things is that it is the combination of an excess of 20 billion devices established to collect, sense and then transfer data through the use of the internet. The consideration of such data may include the list of contacts, location, health and fitness data, and browsing patterns meant to create an understood communication protocol. In many circumstances, the devices can receive data from the environment, which is meant to inform people, especially in making decisions.

Generally, the internet of things is an invention that has penetrated the day to day activities and the living of households and even industries. Hence, it is understood to be the established internet connections among various everyday entities that are intelligent to connect to the available network or wireless device. This is enabled by identifying, gathering, and transferring various data instructions through the internet. In addition, it looks to escalate the utility and relevance of the internet with the established network, which enhances devices to communicate with people. However, the rapid developments associated with technology openly offer essential opportunities for various applications that work towards improving the quality of life and also enhance on effective services exchanges (Jayavardhana et al., 2013)

Over the past ten years, there has been the penetration of the IoT, especially in running the daily activities attributed to the wireless communication apparatus and systems like the 5G and RFID that have exploited technology for surveilling and control. However, many manufacturers and service providers are mainly investing in the future goals of IoTs. Implementing different IoTs mainly adopt various communication abilities and technological designs that have a particular ability to deliver. The best example includes the medical equipment that enhances patient monitoring and the portable sensors that enable life to run smoothly.

Understanding the term ‘Internet of Things” is meant to create a definition of the future reality that will enhance the understanding of the role of sensory abilities and are connected to the existing global networks. The main reason for such technological abilities is to cover the physical and digital space gap. Hence, the representation of the IoT system is about collecting intelligent data and devices that aim at accomplishing a certain goal that can enhance understanding of the environment (Lee and Lee, 2015).

Al and Machine Learning

Al is considered radical in technology use and exploitation because it supports the required innovative applications like product recommendations, robotics, navigation systems, and autonomous vehicle systems (Deloitte, 2020). Machine learning is among the important technologies that constitute Al. Machine learning systems are used through clustering, where information is made easy to understand and compiled by dividing it into unsupervised and supervised data (Athey, 2018). Furthermore, applying a distinct technique, especially in understanding machine learning, varies and includes rule learning, neural networks, concept learning, and support vector machines. However, in analyzing of supervised learning, the system is always referenced so that there is the exploitation of data and also able to create various patterns that will be able to come up from the existing groups in the data. In many circumstances, the analysis is used in the analysis and also in the clustering problems (P. Dangeti, 2017).

The relevant view of data is that when it is being grouped, it automatically needs to be separated into clusters where, it should stay separated in a unique form that the components must have various resemblances or belong to a particular group. However, the data difference is openly measured through given metrics and criteria meant to create relevance, especially in data understanding. The view of the grouping algorithms is that they belong to an established category of hierarchical algorithms, partition-based and probabilistic algorithms. In addition, there is the application of the strengthening techniques of learning, that are broadly used in the solving challenges, aligning with the system’s goal, which aims to find a given sequence of actions to a distinct final state.

Blockchain

A Blockchain is a sequence of various blocks linked to each other, establishing a sequence through the last block connecting to the previous one in a sequence. Through the establishment, the distributed ledger uses cryptographic techniques that add the timestamps to the data kept in the set and dispersed systems. Through the establishment, it creates a shield from fraudulent activities that might control the system because there is a secured blockchain by various knots (Wander, 2020).

The blockchain comprises of a header and a body. Different parts have vital roles where the body encompasses the various connections of the block. On the other hand, the block header comprises the established worth that directs to the block header. Therefore, including the previous block’s hash value to a new one brings out a chain. The header encompasses of the stamp of its development, which is always a randomly given number, and the value root of the breakdown of the single transactions in the body of the block. A nonce, a random number, is a number given arbitrary that is only used once. However, every block has an information group that when a node creates a block, it will be able to add the block to an already established blockchain. On the other hand, the other nodes are always in place to authenticate each block before they are added to the chain. Hence, the algorithm is applied to manage the authentication and agreement across various entities that may be unique for the application and use of the blockchain.

Blockchain technology gives various opportunities, but the key understood technological benefit is that it can give solutions and mediate transactions of a known and trusted third party and among individuals. In the modern world, the people like the name of a company through it being certified by individuals hence creating relevance. Furthermore, the blockchain tends to offer a diverse or alternative, and trusted way of transferring data through a specific entity. It can be said that blockchain is being able to share a particular book that can provide consensus ways accompanied by a certain degree of anonymity to the user. In addition, blockchain is known to include smart contracts, which can allow transactions concerning various types of verification that can take place in an open system. Therefore, what is achieved is that the financial exchanges transactions are always not changed, and it is challenging to alter a specific records related to a particular transactions (Tavares, 2018).

Benefits of Technology Include (Geranio, 2017)

Reliability: the use of blockchain is through the distributed network, where it removes the urge for a central point of operation and negotiation that is mainly an important point of correcting errors and attacks which might affect the whole operating system.

The avoidance of mediation: the analysis of the parties involved then brings along a specific dominance over the data being distributed, and the various units can interchange their programs without the urge for discussion, especially from a third parties.

Quality data: the data found in the blockchain is complete, unaltered, and consistent, so there is an easy way of retrieving it to serve various functions.

Integrity: the view of transactions is supposed to be protocol based so that they can be analyzed and availed anytime to any party involved so that it can develop transparency in use and exposure on a general scale.

However, though there are benefits, blockchain has various challenges that they face, which bring a different view of efficiency in attaining the required results. The transaction speed, the information limit given on each block, and what they contain are essential in the verification procedures. To advance security, it automatically means that there is need to have a unique view on the trading algorithm used so that there is a functional view of the type of results that need to be achieved. To maintain the information confidentiality, it makes it reasonably well to create further research that will be put in place so that the data is encrypted. The carrying of further research is meant to create a relevant view on the encryption protocol that will create a secure view that will make the information not exposed (Tavares, 2018).

The replacement of this trading system with new technology, then it becomes necessary to have a stable approach that will avoid the system interconnection issues that will change the mode of operation, the culture, and the legislation that will be put in place to create a different view on the type of legislations that are going to enhance the technological operations. However, the parties involved in the development should be able to organize and have a strategy to develop and use the set technology correctly. In addition, the change in how organizations operate is meant to solely hinge on on the flexibility and the strength of the existing blockchain applications. The view of people, especially on how technology operates, is different, especially on a functional basis, mainly relating to the revolution and the potential abilities of the blockchain. It should be understood that blockchain promises to have solutions for the problems that the trusted entities face during transactions; there is a need to resolve the challenges through legal means in case of a dispute (Fabiano, 2017).

Programmable Digital Euro-Benefits for Startups

Looking at the European retail central bank-backed digital currency (Retail CBDC) as a “programmable Digital Euro” is meant to bring new opportunities that will be important to businesses and users. The looking at the various European startups then, most of them may have access to much creativity faster, like the making of cross-border payments, which bring along results as expected. In many circumstances, these startups are protected by European legislation against digital economy sovereignty. The look at the Euro’s CBDC encourages that it might also drive the practical re-emergence of the established banking transactions hence bringing faster settlement of exchange rates. In addition, banks operating processes will become more efficient to provide the required value addition to the customers and businesses.

The analysis of the cross-border payments and the general trade financing will turn into cheaper and faster for the customers. When stretched, the transaction fees levied on the cross-border payments will reach almost 6.9 % of the total transaction value and might take a minimum of nine days to clear (World Bank, 2018). A look at the European central bank’s statistics for 2019 about non-cash payments explains that almost 44 billion transactions were processed through the retail payment systems in the euro area.

The digitization of the machine economy and the general invasion of the IoTs to the developed logistics and the various payment systems broadly contribute to the appreciation of the unifying logistics and the streamlining of the supply chain into one system. Therefore, startups will be required to create entrance to the computerized supply chain systems, which guide the elasticity of having an adaptive logistic network. Exploiting the digital Euro-empowered blockchain will make available a unique safety feature that will enhance the storage, delivery, and payment of startups only if they consider using Al technology. In many circumstances, there will be an investment in the various economic sectors like healthcare, transportation, and manufacturing. The use of IoT machines will create different access to the already established blockchain-protected account so that they can be able to facilitate their payments.

The startups will profit from having more inventions solely in the monetary sector, which will further explain the Digital Euro. The facilitation of the payment flows, especially for the clients and the suppliers, generally creates a different way of payment that will be in place, which might include dividends, coupons, and repos. In addition, there should be a need to consider the safety or the foreign exchange trading that will be established due to the urge to execute a certain blockchain-based digital transfer. Looking at both hardware and software explanations to the digital Euro, they could allow the innovative modes of payments like mobile except for the e-banking services available (BitCom, 2020). In addition, the startups in the financial industry need to promote the services to be supported by the already existing legislative framework that holds the digital euro-related payment systems.

The Smart Contracts

The utility of blockchain is that it can facilitate the automation of the processes involving many organizations from industrial views. Hence, it is relevant towards understanding and defining the established concept of smart contracts for better use. Various functional computer programs should be installed to enhance the execution of agreements between two parties that might occur under certain conditions. Therefore, when they occur, then the smart contract will be able to act accordingly about a certain clause that is relevant and accommodative between them. Through this, the software program will automatically be able to control the developed digital and physical objects legally.

The understanding of the term smart contract is anchored on the analysis of information that is solely dependent on the various exterior services that can utilize information from the world and then be able to store it safely in the blockchain. The service is broadly referred to as the ledgers. A good example is that a ledger can inspect files to determine the arrival time, enhancing the documenting of the arrival data that is put down in the blockchain. Due to this, the smart contract can make active programs that solely depend on the command being issued.

The type of ledger depends on the kind and quality of data collected, especially from the contact with the exterior world. In addition, the look at the availability of the software programs and the strength of the outgoing and incoming messages makes it easy to develop a critical working ledger. The example of the information to be collected includes the products’ temperature, the spare parts market value, and even the location of the trucks that have been used in information collection. It should be appreciated that the data comes from research on the websites, which is then collected on the ledger software.

Using the ledger material is meant to extract information that will then be reflected in the composition of the physical world. A better example is the look at RFID sensors and how they are easily used, creating relevance in data application and utility. However, the hardware ledger faces a challenge, especially in reporting the input values without creating a compromising data security environment. It should be noted that the incoming ledger can record and also introduce date from the outside world, making it reliably easy to create an expansive usage view. On the other hand, the outgoing information ledger can allow the broader smart contracts to send data to the outside world.

Sharing Economy

The coming up with new business models is related to the open sharing of the economic model that has extended to the sharing of self-driven cars. The explanation of the use of self-driven cars or autonomous vehicles then the relative view of startups is that they should openly consider them as a varying way of providing the required services. An example of a sharing economy is when an owner of a self-driving car can offer his car as a taxi in exchange for digital currency. To facilitate this, a third party is not supposed to be automatically involved in the use of blockchain to make the transaction successful.

The Health Care Applications

Understanding the operation of the healthcare and medical service applications and how they can give direction towards the exploitation of the specialized IoT equipment comes down to the measures in place meant to create and make life more meaningful. The data can be about oxygen or the general ability of the blood pressure levels. Therefore, the transmission can be through the view of the remote medical Centre, which is meant to create a different consultancy that comes along after monitoring the actual data. Through this, the doctors are always helped to create time to participate in the personalized health service model to help patients in their medical journey. In addition, doctors are helped in the exchange of services which is meant to result in a mutual relation as required in the medical field.

Possible Effects of Deglobalization

Deglobalization occasionally occurs when trade and investment between countries significantly decline. Holding foreign financial assets that result from direct foreign investments is a significant boost for startups. Hence, deglobalization means that startups will have reduced access to foreign investors’ financial assets. Consequently, the growth of the startups may potentially stall because of their access to a limited amount of financial resources. From the perspective of the digital currency, a deglobalized environment would mean that the digital currency would be more volatile, thereby necessitating the fluctuation in prices (Karunaratne, 2012). The net effect on the startups is that they become unstable due to the price fluctuations where one they are manageable, the other day they are extremely low. Hence, the economic interaction between different nations is vital to startups’ survival in the digital currency world.

Deglobalization can result in financial instability in a country because of the artificial financial crises that such situations cause. The withdrawal of foreign investments resulting from deglobalization is a key factor in causing financial crises because a huge portion of the financial assets in the market are taken away. Financial instability in an economy is a definite disadvantage to many startups because they struggle to sustain themselves in an unstable market. Therefore, it is justifiable to argue that the deglobalization process has detrimental effects on the digital currency, negatively influencing the startups by slowing down their growth or, in some instances, extinguishing them from the market.

The Functioning of the Digital Currencies under Unique Circumstances

This study wishes to explore the functioning of digital currencies under unique circumstances. Such circumstances include the popping up of emergencies caused by a change in climate, which undermines air travel, or where blocs refuse each other. Restricting travel significantly affects the functioning of digital currency because it limits the number of transactions that can take place between nations. This significantly affects the business at both ends of the trading nations. Similarly, restricting air travel for climate-related reasons means that exports and imports cannot cross borders from one country to the other. Consequently, business deteriorates for most startups. Under such circumstances, the digital currency depreciates because of features like inflation caused by the failure to travel by air.

Similarly, in situations where blocs cannot trade with each other for some reason, digital currency is always on the receiving end. The lack of business between the two regional blocs means that digital currencies cannot be used. The resultant effect is that digital currencies have become more volatile. The volatility arises from the idea that digital currencies depend on projections, which means that investors and users have differing opinions, as well as government regulations (Matsuura, 2016). Blocs that have refused to trade with each other could attach their reasons for not doing so to government regulations or other issues. Hence, the more volatile the digital currencies become, the more people will not associate with them in terms of using them to trade. Therefore, digital currencies work differently in distinct environments depending on the prevailing circumstances. The concept of volatility plays a significant role in explaining the behavior of digital currencies under different circumstances.

Conclusion

In summary, the introduction and utilization of the Digital Euro are generally aimed at affecting the ability of startups in either positive or negative ways. The influence of the Digital Euro will be significantly determined through the establishment of regulations that will be put in place to support the startups and enhance their processes either within the European Union or outside. However, the launch of the digital Euro will be vital, especially in stimulating the growth and the upswing of the tech companies via having investments that will enable tech startups to reap benefits from the well-established European market. The paper’s analysis looks at the existing implications for various circumstances that affect the digital Euro, like deglobalization. The findings explain that the main effects include reduced access to financial assets for the startups and the prevailing financial instability in the countries affected by financial crises.

The paper presents functional business models that startups can use mainly based on the blockchain, IoT, and Al technologies that will surround and also guide the functioning of the various Digital Euro payments. In addition, there is a further explanation, especially on the various business concepts of the established business models and how the founders of various startups should be able to use the new technology to explore and develop new business ideas. Exploiting the Blockchain system will establish persistence, especially under various circumstances involving the deglobalization, because the dynamics involved are different.
A digital euro is a currency that does not have a physical currency in the traditional sense but exists solely as a digital form of payment. It is a crypto currency, but it is also considered a virtual currency.

The primary purpose of digital currency is to provide conveniences and security for end users while also openly allowing businesses to use the benefits of blockchain technology.
Furthermore, a digital euro could help accelerate the process of deglobalization by providing more people with access to global currencies. This could help reduce trade barriers and create more business opportunities.

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