The European Blockchain Sandbox for innovative use cases involving Distributed Ledger Technologies (DLT) is an initiative of the European Commission. The goal of the project is to provide a framework for regulators, supervising authorities and blockchain innovators to engage in a regulatory dialogue, identify obstacles from a legal & regulatory perspective in a safe and confidential environment, and therefore increase legal certainty for innovative decentralised technology solutions, including blockchain. The sandbox will allow regulators and supervisors to enhance their knowledge of cutting edge blockchain technologies.
The pan-European sandbox is set up and operated by a consortium of legal experts from Bird & Bird and its consulting arm OXYGY, supported by blockchain experts WBNoDE and by the web-designers of Spindox, which has been procured through an open call for tenders in 2022. The selection and the award process will be overseen by a panel of independent academics consisting of Professor Roman Beck (IT-University, Copenhagen), Professor Soulla Louca (University of Nicosia, Cyprus) and Professor Walter Blocher (Universities of Kassel and Vienna).
The three-year initiative will support 20 projects annually, starting in 2023, and is open to use cases across the EU/EEA based on any blockchain infrastructure. Blockchain use cases will be selected based on a number of criteria, including the maturity of their business case, legal/regulatory relevance and their contribution to the EU’s wider policy priorities. Selected use cases will be matched with national and EU regulators. Further information about the selection criteria and the application process can be found on the website. Companies (including start-ups and scale-ups) and public entities with a validated proof of concept are invited to participate. Every year, the most innovative regulator participating in the sandbox will be awarded a prize.
In addition to specialist legal and regulatory advice provided by Bird & Bird, blockchain companies participating in the sandbox will have the opportunity to discuss regulatory questions that are relevant for them in a safe and confidential environment with relevant regulators. Participating regulators and supervisors on the other hand, will have the opportunity to enhance their understanding of innovative blockchain solutions, discuss regulatory issues in a cross-border setting with other regulators, and contribute to the development of best practices at the intersection of innovation and regulation.
Applications are now open for the first cohort of the European Blockchain Sandbox.
We are encouraging companies (including start-ups and scale-ups) and public entities from across the EU/EEA with innovative blockchain use cases to participate and be at the forefront of this dialogue and mutual learning experience. Applications for the first cohort will remain open until 23.59 CET on 14 April 2023.
If you are interested in becoming a participant in the Sandbox, please apply here.