Digital asset innovation is creating new ways to conduct financial and economic activity, including new systems to transfer value efficiently and instantly; replacing centralized intermediaries with more distributed systems; providing more accessible and inclusive services; digitizing property rights and information; and automating financial transactions  and functions.  In these and other ways, this innovation may significantly disrupt traditional industries and reshape markets. 

The Digital Assets Policy Project explores the challenging public policy issues raised by this innovation.  How should we balance the value of encouraging innovation and realizing potential economic and social benefits with the need to protect public welfare and minimize undesirable risks?  What are the potential effects of these technologies on financial stability, efficiency of financial markets, competition, consumer welfare and access to financial services? What are the implications of these technologies for the economic, foreign policy, security and strategic interests of the United States?  Can our existing regulatory framework respond to these challenges adequately? 


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Are Stablecoins the Future of Money?

4:00 PM


Stablecoins are arguably the most important and successful crypto innovation, and Jeremy Allaire is arguably the most important person driving their acceptance into mainstream finance and everyday usage. With dollar-based stablecoins like USDC, each token represents one dollar, has far greater price stability than bitcoin, and can be transferred as easily as an email. As the co-founder, Chairman and CEO of Circle, the issuer of USDC (the second most popular stablecoin), Allaire believes USDC will one day be owned by billions of people and used to support trillions of dollars of economic activity. Allaire discussed his vision and how USDC is being used today, including by millions of people who might otherwise lack access to the dollar, and to further financial inclusion and humanitarian aid. He was joined by Timothy Massad, director of the M-RCBG Digital Assets Policy Project, and Harvard Law School Professor Howell Jackson.

Allaire has more than two decades of experience building and leading global internet software platforms, including founder and CEO of Brightcove, technologist and entrepreneur in residence at General Catalyst, CTO of Macromedia, and co-founder and CTO of Allaire Corporation.


Lawrence H. Summers headshot

Lawrence H. Summers

Frank and Denie Weil Director of the Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business and Government
Charles W. Eliot University Professor
Robin Greenwood Headshot

Robin Greenwood

George Gund Professor of Finance and Banking
Anne and James F. Rothenberg Faculty Fellow
Senior Associate Dean for Faculty Development and Research
Harvard Business School (HBS)

Howell Jackson Headshot

Howell Jackson

James S. Reid, Jr. Professor of Law
Harvard Law School (HLS)


Tim Massad headshot

Tim Massad

Research Fellow - Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business and Government