About Event

Powered by the Global Blockchain Business Council, “Blockchain Central” is the premier venue at Davos for all things blockchain. As the destination for VIP cocktail hours, curated roundtables, private dinners, and technology demonstrations, in 2018, it was the hub for blockchain partnership facilitation.

In January 2019, from January 21st through January 25th, the GBBC will return to Davos for its third year of programming. Located steps from the Congress Center on the Promenade, the GBBC’s “Blockchain Central” lounge will be seen by thousands of participants in the World Economic Forum meeting each day.

Inside, we will bring together the leading voices in this groundbreaking field to create unmatched opportunities for innovators, especially GBBC’s current (and potential) institutional members, to collaborate with policymakers and business leaders from around the world.

Contact Bruce Degn to Learn How Your Company Can Make an Impact at Davos

Topics of Conversation Include:

The New Abnormal: Solving for Sustainability and Environmental Resilience

Tokenizing the Real World

Digital Economies: What Emerging Markets Can Teach Us Today

Urban Update - Cities of the Future

Reinventing the Refugee Experience

Resolved: Are Blockchains the Answer for More Secure Elections?

The Next Battlefield: Security, Data Privacy and Blockchains

Are We There Yet? Private vs Public Blockchains

The Future of Entertainment and Emerging Tech

Borderless: Law and Order in a Decentralized World

Building a Digital State: Blockchain Solutions for the Public Sector

Race to Regulate: Who will Build the Winning Paradigm?

Blockchain Interoperability: Myth or Mandate


Brian Behlendorf, Executive Director, Hyperledger, The Linux Foundation

Brian Behlendorf is the Executive Director of Hyperledger, an open source blockchain technology initiative hosted at the Linux Foundation. Behlendorf was a primary developer of the Apache Webserver, the most popular web server software on the Internet, and a founding member of the Apache Software Foundation. He has also served on the board of the Mozilla Foundation since 2003 and the Electronic Frontier Foundation since 2013. He was the founding CTO of CollabNet and CTO of the World Economic Forum. Most recently, Behlendorf was a managing director at Mithril Capital ManagementLLC, a global technology investment firm.

Gigi Brisson, Partner, Attractor Ventures; CEO & Founder, Ocean Elders

Gigi Brisson co-founded Attractor Ventures which invests in private and public technology companies. Past private investments include Verisign, Omniture, Salesforce.com and more currently Launch (Launch Festival, Summit &Angels), Brilliant, ProductionPro, Underground Cellar, Captricity, and Ztux. Gigi is also Founder and CEO of OceanElders, a group focused on ocean and wildlife protection and conservation. She created the organization in 2011 to be a locus of collaboration in the field of ocean conservation and sought out global leaders who have a personal passion for the ocean and its wildlife. Ocean Elders supports the work of ocean organizations and nonprofits, and elevates their visibility and impact through personal connections, business networks, and combined experience. Gigi and her husband fly antique airplanes.

Hon. E. David Burt MP, Premier & Minister of Finance, Bermuda

Premier the Hon. E. David Burt, JP, MP, is Bermuda’s youngest Premier. He is a graduate of The George Washington University in Washington, D.C., where he graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Business Administration with a double major in Finance and Information Systems.

He was awarded The George Washington University Presidential Administrative Fellowship and received his Master’s of Science degree in Information Systems Development in 2003. Mr. Burt attained a Project Management Professional certification in 2009. He is also a licensed private pilot.

An entrepreneur, Premier Burt started GMD Consulting Limited, an IT consulting company focusing on project management. He served as President since its inception until 2016 when he stepped down upon being appointed Leader of the Opposition. Premier Burt co-founded HITCH Limited and was the lead developer for the award winning HITCH Mobile App enabling Bermuda residents to hail taxis.

In the past, Premier Burt has served on the Tourism Board, National Training Board, as a Director of the Bermuda Chamber of Commerce, and has been a Director of the Bermuda Economic Development Corporation.

Mr. Burt is also active in local and international public service and community organizations. He is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Incorporated, the Western Stars Sports Club, and the Devonshire Recreation Club.

Mariana Dahan, CEO & Co-Founder, World Identity Network (WIN)

Dr. Dahan started her career in the telecommunications industry in 1998. Having worked for mobile operators in both developed and developing countries, she gained valuable insights on the impact of new technologies on economic growth and social development. These are reflected in her latest (2015) book “Quenching the Thirst for Innovation: Modeling the Diffusion of Mobile Technologies”.  Dr. Dahan holds a PhD degree from ESCP Europe Business School and Paris II University in France. Prior to joining the World Bank Group in 2009, Dr. Dahan was a visiting researcher at the MIT Sloan School of Management in the U.S.

Mariana Dahan served as the first Coordinator of the Identification for Development (ID4D) global initiative of the World Bank Group, catalyzing progress towards identification systems using 21st century technology solutions. As part of her previous assignments within the World Bank Group, Mariana Dahan has also managed the Identity Management (IDM) Experts Group, building partnerships with governments, development agencies, private sector companies, research labs and civil society organizations across the world.

Currently, Mariana Dahan is the Senior Operations Officer in the Office of the World Bank Group’s Senior Vice President in charge of the 2030 Development Agenda, United Nations relations and partnerships.

Jalak Jobanputra, Founder, Future\Perfect Ventures

Jalak Jobanputra is Founding Partner of Future\Perfect Ventures, an early stage venture capital fund in NYC focused on cutting edge technology. Jalak was awarded Institutional Investor’s Most Powerful Fintech Dealmakers in 2018, 2017 and 2016. In 2017, she was cited as a “Top 5 Investor Powering the Blockchain Boom” and CB Insights noted FPV as one of the top VC funds in blockchain “before it was cool”. Since founding the firm, she has spoken on blockchain technology at many global conferences,including the Milken Global Institute, Dutch Development Bank/FMO annual meeting,and The Economist Buttonwood Gathering. She also founded Collective Future, an organization to foster diversity and inclusion in the nascent blockchain sector.

Jalak, born in Nairobi, has been a venture capitalist since 1999, when she invested throughthe dotcom boom and bust in Silicon Valley.  She was also the Director of Emerging Market Mobile Investments at Omidyar Network, a philanthrocapitalist fund started by Pierre Omidyar, co-founder of eBay.

She worked at Intel Capital investing in enterprise software in Silicon Valley from 1999-2003 as well as New Venture Partners and the NYC Investment Fund where she formed one of NYC's first seed funds and helped establish the Fintech Innovation Lab in2010. She started her career as a media/tech/telecom investment banker in NYC and London.

She is a magna cum laude graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, with a B.S. in Economics (concentration in Finance) from The Wharton School and a B.A. in Communications from the Annenberg School. She received her MBA from Kellogg in 1999. She is active in education reform and sits on the Board for Center for an Urban Future.

Legislator Jason Hsu, Member of Parliament, Taiwan

Known as Crypto Congressman, Jason Hsu is technologist-turned-legislator. He is currently a legislator at-large from Taiwan overseeing technology developments and innovation. Among the crucial legislations he introduced and passed include Fintech Sandbox Act, Self-driving Vehicle Act, Angel Investment Law, Cybersecurity Management Act and Virtual Currency Guidelines. Jason is a proponent for cryptocurrency and blockchain. Jason is credited for launching Asia Blockchain Alliance (ABA) as well as Taiwan Parliamentary Coalition for Blockchain (TPCB) and Self-Regulatory Organization(SRO). Jason is also a founding member of Global Blockchain Policy Council.

 A regular keynote speaker on blockchain and cryptocurrency regulations, Jason has spoken at Global Blockchain Forum, Blockchain for Impact Summit at United Nations, Japan Blockchain Conference,Asia Blockchain Summit, Seamless Singapore, Asian Leadership Conference, Google, Berkeley Blockchain Club and Taiwan RegTechConference.

 Jason Hsu co-founded TEDxTaipei and served as TEDx senior ambassador to Asia. Hsu graduates from Singularity University with a focus on exponential technology. He is a Draper Hills Fellow at Stanford University’s Center for Democracy Development and Rule of Law (CDDRL). His research focus is: blockchain, democracy and public governance.

MEP Eva Kaili, Member of the European Parliament for Greece

 Eva Kaili is a Member of the European Parliament, elected in 2014.

In her capacity as the Chair of the European Parliament's Science and Technology Options Assessment body (STOA) she has, been working intensively on promoting innovation as a driving force of the establishment of the European Digital Single Market. She has been particularly active in the fields of blockchain technology, m/eHealth, big data, fintech, AI and cybersecurity.

Since her election,she has also been very active in the field of taxation, where she has been the Rapporteur of the ECON committee's annual tax report. As a member of the ECON committee,she has been focusing on EU's financial integration and the management of the financial crisis in the Eurozone.

Prior to her position in the European Parliament, she has been elected two times in the Greek Parliament(serving between 2007-2012), with the PanHellenic Socialist Movement (PASOK).She holds a Bachelor degree in Architecture and Civil Engineering, and Postgraduate degree in European Politics. Currently, she is conducting her PhD in International Political Economy.

MP Kalle Palling, Member of Parliament, Estonia

Kalle Palling is in charge of the European Union Affairs Committee in the Riigikogu, Estonian Parliament. In addition, Palling is a member of the Supervisory Board of Eesti Energia and Tallinn Airport. Palling is an advocate of better connecting Estonia to Europe. He is also a founding member of the Global Blockchain Policy Forum.

Alex 'Sandy' Pentland, Professor, MIT; Faculty Director, MIT Connection Science

Professor Alex 'Sandy' Pentland directs the MIT Connection Science lab and previously helped create and direct the MIT Media Lab and the Media Lab Asia in India. He is one of the most-cited scientists in the world, and Forbes declared him one of the "7 most powerful data scientists in the world". He is a founding member of advisory boards for Google, AT&T, Nissan, and the UN Secretary General, a serial entrepreneur who has co-founded more than a dozen companies, a member of the U.S. National Academy of Engineering and leader within the World Economic Forum. His most recent books are Social Physics, Trust::Data, and Honest Signals.

Leanne Kemp, CEO & Founder, Everledger; Chief Entrepreneur, Queensland, Australia

Leanne Kemp is Queensland's third Chief Entrepreneur, following on from Steve Baxter and inaugural Chief, Mark Sowerby.

Leanne is the Founder & CEO of Everledger, a leading emerging technology enterprise that tracks the provenance of high-value assets on a global digital ledger in an authenticated immutable manner.

Using her extensive background in emerging technology, business, jewelry and insurance, Leanne is pushing boundaries with Everledger in building a global verification system that asserts transparency along the entire supply chain process.

This enables the tracking and protection of high-value assets, mitigating risk and fraud in global marketplaces.

Her leadership role in technology has been recognised, winning awards including the 2018 Advance Australia Award, Innovator of the Year 2018 at the Women in IT Awards (London) as well as being named in UK Business Insider’s 26 Coolest Women in UK Tech 2016. Leanne was named Brummell Magazine’s Top 30 Female Innovators 2016 and is also an IBM Champion for 2018.

Leanne is an appointed member of the World Economic Forum’s Blockchain Council and a Co-Chair for the World Trade Board's Sustainable Trade Action Group and is on the IBM Blockchain Platform Board of Advisors.

Matt Sorum, CCO, Artbit; Partner, STHORM; Former Drummer, Guns N' Roses; Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductee

Guns ’n Roses, Velvet Revolver, The Cult, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, philanthropist. Works to educate people about the power of decentralization.

Roya Mahboob, CEO & Co-Founder, Digital Citizen Fund; TIME Magazine 100 Most Influential People 2013

Roya Mahboob is a serial entrepreneur, CEO and President of Digital Citizen Fund, Bright Citizen ( Coffee& Tea) and EdyEdy. She focused on building #Digital Literacy for women and children in developing countries. And her personal goal for #Digital Literacy is to bridge the gap between education and job markets by offering practical skills for women and youth in developing countries. Roya Mahboob is also President and board member of the Digital Citizen Fund, with aims to increase women’s technological literacy and provide employment and educational opportunities for girls and children in developing countries like Afghanistan and sits on the Advisory Board of Forbes School of Business of Ashford University, Resolution Project, and the Global Thinkers Forum organization.

Roya was named to TIME Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the World for 2013 for her work in building internet classrooms in high schools in Afghanistan. The TIME 100 essay was written by Facebook COO, Sheryl Sandberg who is also the author of “Lean In Women, Work and the Will to Lead”. She is also a member of the 2014 Tribeca Disruptive Innovation Awards, Civic Innovators, The Advancement of Gender Equality through Education Award, Wonder Women and Young Leader of World Economic Form in 2015. She recently received her Hon Doctor of Science from McMaster University.

Heidi Pease, CEO & Co-Founder, Los Angeles Blockchain Lab; CEO & Co-Founder, Proof of Art

As a leader in the Los Angeles blockchain community, Heidi co-founded the Los Angeles Blockchain Lab -- a collaboration of academia, government, enterprise, and community focused on developing the blockchain ecosystem in Southern California and abroad. Partners include City of Los Angeles, University of California Los Angeles, University of California Irvine, University of Southern California, Caltech, Panasonic, etc.

In addition, Heidi is CEO of Proof Of Art – a social enterprise and community building platform providing business solutions for artists using blockchain. She was a hand-selected participant for Richard Branson’s Blockchain Summit -- where 40 global thought leaders address blockchain’s potential for social impact. Heidi is a frequent blockchain guest lecturer for leading academic institutions, executive retreats, government events and community programs. Most recently she presented on behalf of Los Angeles at the United Nations General Assembly Concordia “Blockchain Central.” She is also an advisor for numerous startups including Spire (mobile crypto wallets for emerging markets), DApperNetwork (developing blockchain technical talent), and ArtBit (platform directly compensating individual artists).

Prior to her blockchain activism, Heidi focused on turning around distressed assets, growing small businesses into top-tier national firms, and leading sales teams for companies including AIG.

Visa Vallivaara, Research Scientist, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland

Visa Vallivaara is a mathematician and cyber security researcher at VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland. His research focuses on cryptography and authentication. He is also one of the top Finnish experts in blockchains. VTT is the biggest research institution in the Nordics focusing on the potential and applications of new smart technologies and innovation services in society and industry.

We want to make smart society and next generation Internet approaches resilient and sustainable by solving the huge trust and privacy issues in such complex ecosystems. Therefore, systems based on blockchains, cryptography and authentication are in the focus of Vallivaara’s work at the VTT. Being part of Finland's innovation system and supported by the Finnish ministries indicates how important VTT's and in particular our contributions is seen by the Finnish authorities to guide us into a more secure and trustful data driven future. "Digitization will change our societies fundamentally, yet we lack mechanisms to establish trust. Technologies such as Blockchains have the potential to fill this gap."

Sheila Warren, Project Head, Blockchain and Distributed Ledger Technology, World Economic Forum

Sheila Warren - Head, Blockchain and Distributed LedgerTechnologies Sheila began her career as a Wall Street attorney before turning to philanthropy and non-profit tech over a decade ago. She has represented banks, philanthropists and progressive non-profits. Most recently, she was VP of strategic alliances and general counsel of TechSoup, the global social enterprise that has connected civil society organizations around the world with over $9bn in donated tech-based resources. Previously, Sheila also designed and launched NGO source, a service focused on international grant making. She is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law.

Valery Vavilov, CEO & Founder, The Bitfury Group

Valery Vavilov is the CEO and founder of The Bitfury Group – the world’s leading full-service blockchain company. Valery's entrepreneurial experience and passion for Blockchain technology led him to found the company in 2011, when blockchain technology was just beginning to capture the world’s attention and imagination. A native Latvian who experienced first-hand the challenges resulting from the collapse of the Soviet Union, Valery was inspired by blockchain technology and saw an opportunity to build technological solutions that could improve the lives of people all over the world. Valery focused first on the hardware solutions that would ensure security and trust in the Bitcoin Blockchain, leading Bitfury to develop five generations of cutting-edge mining chips and state-of-the-art data center designs. Under his leadership, the company has expanded its focus to provide custom-designed software, consulting solutions, and advanced hardware, all while maintaining its position as one of the major public Bitcoin Blockchain security and transaction providers. Prior to founding Bitfury, Valery spent more than 15 years in a variety of technical and leadership positions. He received his MS from Riga’s Transport & Telecommunication University in Latvia.