Dutch municipalities about to use IOTA for digital services in 2018

Original Post – https://discipl.org/dutch-municipalities-about-to-use-iota-for-digital-services-in-2018/
All Credits to discipl

Like everybody in the Netherlands, Haarlem citizens still need an official paper document when asked to prove that they live in the municipality by organizations like housing corporations. This means making an appointment with a clerk at the municipal office and paying 20 euros to get a fancy sheet of paper with a stamp on it. Now, this awful user experience and inefficient process is about to change thanks to IOTA – a cutting-edge distributed nonprofit open source technology.

In collaboration with ICTU and Xurux, Haarlem created a proof of concept in which the citizens use the Haarlem website to retrieve a publicly attested claim. The citizen logs into the website with existing IDM services (currently DigID) and retrieves a QR code. This QR code is kept by the citizen, and holds information stating that they are known to live in Haarlem, as well as a pointer to the attestation of the claim published by the municipality on a public ledger platform.

Once published, the attestation is considered anonymous and cannot be traced back to the claim – not even by the municipality itself. This is because it is a 384 bit keyed hash of the claim where the key is solely owned by the citizen and other parties that the citizen chooses to share the claim with. The citizen can use the claim, key and pointer to prove their citizenship to others and have it validated without the need of a third party.



Soon, citizens will be able to get their claims attested and validated wherever they want to, wherever they are. Another great advantage of the new process is that Haarlem would be able to charge their citizens significantly less than before – this is mainly due to the fact that newer distributed ledger technology safely allows for zero fee transactions. Also unlike blockchain, one of the most well-known distributed ledger technologies, Directed Acyclic Graph-based solutions like IOTA tend to scale much better and do not consume much energy.

Discipl Core

This pilot project is the first project utilizing Discipl Core. ICTU launched the Discipl[1] concept in 2017 to boost open source innovation for a digital society architecture utilizing distributed ledger technology. Discipl consists of a vision in which society progressed towards a highly automated economy of abundance, quite inspired on writings of Miki Kashtan. It strongly focuses on automated fulfillment of people needs at zero cost. To get to such a society, the idea is to focus on a path to zero cost by adhering to a manifesto stating solutions need to be free in usage, open source, highly automated and easily reproducible/deployable. Also, solutions should fit a so called Discipl Pattern, currently defined as a form of e-democracy which focuses on conflicting needs resolution using a mix of AI and human guided convergent facilitation. To support the development of such solutions ICTU introduced Discipl Core which will be an implementation of a Discipl Pattern supporting API and which is based upon a Self-Sovereign Identity and Verifiable Claims API.

For now a first version of this latter API with a binding to the IOTA platform and its Masked Authenticated Messaging extension feature (used in public mode) is what is being used by Haarlem for the first time. IOTA is what makes Discipl solutions possible now. This first project with Haarlem is also a step towards Self Sovereign Identity in combination with Personal Data Sources in which people are more in control of and possessing their own data, even to a level there’s no need any more for central registers owned by third parties as we only need citizens as prosumers (both consumer as producer) that care for all needs to be fulfilled in a smart and nonviolent way.

In 2018 an ever increasing number of projects at local, national and even international level are queued to evolve Discipl Core and the Discipl Community around that even further with improved and extended functionality. ICTU will also collaborate with Miki Kashtan and partners to define and implement the Discipl Pattern in more detail in 2018.

We’ve only just begun

The proof of concept of this particular use case quickly got a lot of attention from other municipalities. When hearing about the project, Amsterdam immediately expressed great interest its progress. And, of course, frontrunner municipalities like Haarlem know of a lot more use cases for which similar distributed solutions can be developed.

Organizations utilizing these solutions (attesting and validating claims) will run their own IOTA nodes and there may even be a need for IOTA permanodes (once released) at national level. As this increases the number of IOTA nodes, it will help stabilize and improve the IOTA network – and therefore the solutions built upon it.  There’s no need for usage fees or acquiring cryptotokens as digital money with these solutions. With nonprofit open source distributed ledger technology like IOTA we can actually let go of these old concepts and create new, more streamlined processes for the future, returning to a more unconditional giving/receiving state of being[2].

[1] http://discipl.org

[2] http://thefearlessheart.org/life-interdependence-%E2%80%A8and-the-pursuit-of-meeting-needs/