PBW 2023 explores the current state of the blockchain space

The Paris Blockchain Week 2023 conference attracted prominent tech companies’ professionals discussing the current state of the blockchain space during the “State of the Chain 2023” panel discussion. The panel discussion was moderated by Cointelegraph’s editor-in-chief, Kristina Lucrezia Cornèr, with panelists Ryan Nitz, the head of solutions architecture at Coinbase; Matthew Savarese, the head of strategy at Nasdaq Digital Assets; Rich Widmann, the head of strategy for Web3 at Google; Dante Disparte, the chief strategy officer and head of global policy at Circle; and Denelle Dixon, the CEO of Stellar Development Foundation.

During the panel discussion, the experts shared their company’s current focus and gave their predictions on how 2023 would continue. One of the topics explored in the discussion was the challenges that the blockchain industry faced in 2022 up to the present. Disparte expressed his belief that the current state of the blockchain space is “not strong.” However, he is hopeful that people continue building and developing amid these challenges, which is evident in the thousands of attendees at the PBW conference.

Disparte also believes that the current situation in the space is necessary, similar to past tech and financial industry failures. He said, “You needed the dotcom bubble to burst to hand over the development of the internet toward normal people, business models, and investors. You needed the 2008 financial crisis to get comprehensive reforms of Wall Street even if those reforms might have failed.” The Circle executive also reminded the audience that many things that are being “taken for granted” in the space are born in response to the failures of the traditional financial systems.

Meanwhile, other panelists gave the audience a preview of what their firms are currently focusing on. According to Nitz, crypto exchange Coinbase is working hard to help onboard Web2 companies and eliminate the barrier of complexity. He explained that: “We’re starting to see Web2 brands evolve and start getting involved in the Web3 and crypto ecosystem. One of the challenges they are facing is a great deal of complexity. This is why at Coinbase, we are trying to simplify this experience.”

On the other hand, Widmann pointed out that while there is indeed a need to reach more users for Web3, the Google executive also highlighted that there is something of value within the space. “Yes, we need to have a billion users. Yes, we need more people using these technologies. But before we do that, we actually have to prove that there’s value there,” he argued. He added, “They’re not just going to show up because they care about Web3, they’re not just going to show up because we asked them to, we actually have to give them something that will motivate them to move with their feet.”

In addition, Widmann shared that Google’s current focus is thinking of how to remove barriers of entry for new developers who may be leaving Web2 projects like Google and go to Web3 firms like Coinbase and build the next applications that will attract billions of users.

Contributing to the discussion, Savarese shared NASDAQ’s perspective. According to Savarese, the stock exchange company believes that institutions being involved in the Web3 ecosystem are just as important as everything else. Savarese explained: “Where we see the opportunity is bringing a lot of those, whether they be in large pension funds, whether it be large asset managers, understanding everything from the KYC elements to it down into how does it transact.”

While many of the panelists focused on the present and gave their thoughts about the current state of the blockchain space, Dixon made some predictions about the future. According to the Stellar Development Foundation CEO, 2023 is going to be amazing and challenging. “I get it. Like, we’re in this spot where we have lots of regulators looking at us and saying things but we can convince them otherwise when we focus on what we’re really good at,” she added.

The panel discussion provides insights into the challenges and opportunities in the blockchain space. Despite the challenges, industry experts believe that blockchain technology has something of value, and they will continue to build and develop the ecosystem to prove its value. The blockchain space is evolving, and the experts anticipate that 2023 will be amazing and full of opportunities.

In conclusion, the Paris Blockchain Week 2023 conference laid the foundation for discussion and networking among industry experts. The conference was a demonstration of the blockchain community’s commitment to advancing the industry through discussion and collaboration. The conference speakers shared their experiences, knowledge, and insights, and they were optimistic about the future of the blockchain industry. They anticipate that despite the challenges, the blockchain space will continue to grow and revolutionize the financial and technology industry in the years to come.


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