Bitcoin as Currency and Catalyst

  • John Merriman Sholar Stanford University
Keywords: bitcoin, blockchain, digital currency, cryptocurrency


The past five years have seen the rise of the Bitcoin digital currency and, as a result, increased discussion of the idea of a digital currency. This paper seeks to address Bitcoin in several contexts, viewing it as representative of the broader state of the digital currency debate. Through an analysis of several of the most important factors shaping Bitcoin’s existence, this essay develops and defends the assertion that Bitcoin will not achieve widespread adoption in the United States, and in all likelihood will fail to do so throughout the rest of the world as well. In light of this hypothesized downfall, this paper discusses the considerably more viable potential for Bitcoin (and its underlying blockchain technology) to drive innovation in the financial sector and other industries.

Author Biography

John Merriman Sholar, Stanford University
John Merriman Sholar is an undergraduate student at Stanford University, where he is majoring in Computer Science.
Research Articles