Blockchain and Procedural Law: Law and Justice in the Age of Disintermediation
Blockchain, Cryptocurrencies and the Law

Friday, 15 November 2019

Since bitcoin appeared in the midst of the global financial crisis, blockchain, one of its core technologies, has been associated with the promise to transform our day-to-day life, allowing disintermediation at a global stage. While blockchain redefines the ways to transact in the digital age, offering pseudonymous, transparent, traceable, efficient and trustless transactions, it also comes with numerous legal challenges. Blockchains are difficult to regulate and likely to escape the reach of territorial governments. Moreover, the absence of a trusted third party and the transnational character of blockchains seem to make it impossible to hold an individual or a corporation accountable for their actions and give leeway to anonymously coordinated criminal activities by consensus.

The first seminar of the event aims at (i) considering the present and potential implications of this technology for law, with a particular focus on procedure and dispute-resolution, (ii) and presenting the law and politics of bitcoin, which embodies a controversial monetary project and is subject to diverging characterizations that have legal and procedural implications.


1st Seminar: Blockchain, Cryptocurrencies and the Law

14:00 Opening Presentation

Prof. Hélène Ruiz Fabri (Director, MPI Luxembourg for Procedural Law)

14:15  The Rule of the Ledger – An Introduction to Blockchain and the Law

Prof. Angela Walch (St. Mary’s University School of Law; UCL Centre for Blockchain Technologies)
Locating “Process” in Blockchain Systems

Prof. Aaron Wright (Cardozo Law School)
The Rule of Code:  Blockchain Technology and the Law

Dr Michèle Finck (Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition)
Blockchains as Regulation

16:30  A Contentious Currency - The Law and Politics of Bitcoin

Prof. Andrew Hinkes (New York University)
Dissecting the Platypus- What is Bitcoin?

Prof. Carla Reyes (Michigan State University)
Emerging Technology’s Language Wars

Mr Alain Zamaria (MPI Luxembourg for Procedural Law)
Bitcoin’s Social Contract and the Process of Monetization

Dr Hossein Nabilou (University of Luxembourg)
Bitcoin: The Law and Governance Dynamics of a Decentralized Parallel Financial Market Infrastructure

18:30 Closing

Max Planck Institute Luxembourg
Conference room, 4th floor
4, rue Alphonse Weicker
L-2721 Luxembourg

This conference is free of charge.

If you would like to participate, please send an email to