Will Bitcoin’s Creator Get A Nobel Prize?

No one really knows who Satoshi Nakamoto is, but he is believed to be the anonymous inventor behind bitcoin.

And now he could be up for a Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences. Yes, the mystery man behind the digital currency that’s created so much stir has been thrown into the mix by economist Bhagwan Chowdhry, a professor at UCLA. Chowdhry, who was selected by the committee to nominate someone for the 2016 prize, chose to nominate the man responsible for bitcoin.

“I then started thinking whose ideas are likely to have a disruptive influence in the twenty-first century. The name of the inventor of bitcoin suddenly jumped up in my consciousness, and I have not been able to get it out of my mind since then: Satoshi Nakamoto,” he wrote in The Huffington Post in a contributed piece explaining his nomination.

In his letter that explains why he believes “Nakamoto’s contribution [will] change the way we think about money” and the role banks play in moving money around the world, he rattles off a list of why bitcoin is “nothing short of revolutionary.”

“[Bitcoin] offers many advantages over both physical and paper currencies,” he wrote, listing off its ability to bypass “governments, central banks and financial intermediaries.” That’s ironically what’s also gotten bitcoin a bad rap.

But he goes on to push for the reason bitcoin is the invention that deserves a Nobel Prize.

“Beyond demonstrating the possibility of creating a reliable digital currency, Satoshi Nakamoto’s bitcoin protocol has spawned exciting innovations in the FinTech space by showing how many financial contracts — not just currencies — can be digitized, securely verified and stored and transferred instantaneously from one party to another. The implications of this are immense,” Chowdhry wrote.

The open, decentralized public infrastructure and the moving of money securely and without hardly any costs are a few examples he believes support his case. The ability to transform how money is moved and how smart contracts are conducted are others.

And even though Nakamoto’s identity is not known, Chowdhry claims that it can be verified. But Chowdhry explained in his letter that he will accept the award on behalf of the inventor if he wins the award. Nakamoto’s identity is likely a pseudonym for bitcoin’s true creator, and he has been mysteriously out of the spotlight for the past few years.

“I can barely think of another innovation in economic[s] and finance in the last several decades whose influence surpasses the welfare increases that will be engendered by Satoshi Nakamoto’s brilliant, path-breaking invention. That is why I am nominating him for the Nobel Prize in Economics,” he wrote.

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