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Blockchain and Public Procurement

In: European Journal of Comparative Law and Governance
Author:
Raquel Carvalho Universidade Catolica Portuguesa Faculdade de Direito, rmcarvalho@porto.ucp.pt

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Public procurement relies in an apparent irreconcilability between competition, which implies some confidentiality, and transparency. The latest Public Procurement Directives have made e-procurement a mandatory feature. Since blockchain technology has been developed and designed to accomplish integrity, transparency, efficiency and data accuracy, goals which are very much appreciated in public procurement, an interesting question then arises: is there room to apply this technology within public procurement procedures? Will smart contracts be an interesting tool within public procurement? Considering public duties such as data protection, which must be complied with by contracting authorities, and some blockchain features such as non-withdrawable information and the likely broad access to the information there enclosed, one can be drawn to conclude that there is no possible conciliation between these two procedures. The mandatory e-procurement implies some neighbouring problems with this technology. Yet, are there any technological solutions for some of the drawbacks?

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