Decentralization has turned of to be one of the most lucrative aspects of the blockchain technology, but PBoC’s digital currency research lead Yao Qian thinks otherwise. Sian says that excessive decentralization might prove to be a fatal flaw causing the doom for digital currencies.
Chinese news outlet Yicai reported that Qian has argued that it is not possible to have a decentralized, informal blockchain governance on a large scale. The solution to this is to have a central governor for the blockchain.
“In fact, by relaxing the decentralization constraint, many problems can be solved. For example, in a multi-center system such as a coalition chain, upgrading the blockchain bottom by shutting down the system, or emergency intervention, rolling back data, etc., are available means when necessary, and these methods help to control risks and correct mistakes.”
He further added: “It can be foreseen that there will be a new area between the two poles of centralization and decentralization in the future.”
Under the new proposed structure by Yao Qian, the PBoC will have the possibility to either pause or shut down the system, push software upgrades without community consensus or even roll-back transactions and other data.
“For regular code upgrades, controllable smart contract replacements can be achieved by separating code and data and combining multi-layer smart contract structures.”
However, Yao is not the first one to propose such centralized blockchain structure. Zhang Ye, the director of the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC), said that “the absolute decentralization of the blockchain is not valid because the blockchain itself is software and software must be centralized.”
Qian concluded by saying:
“Overall, the governance mechanism on the chain is still in the process of controversy and exploration. There is not yet a unified opinion and we need further attention and research.”