(1) promote blockchain education for law students, lawyers, legislators and regulators through classes, speakers’ series, conferences, and other forums; (2) develop a legal community fluent in blockchain-related issues; and (3) advance research and policy in the emerging field of blockchain technology and the law, with a focus on how this new technology will advance socially beneficial causes.
The Center is focused on education of lawyers and lawmakers, including the development of high-quality academic research related to blockchain innovations for social good.
The direct beneficiaries of this project will be key stakeholders in the US whose aim is to look beyond existing media narratives and create a more balanced regulatory scheme. These stakeholders include: law students and lawyers; policymakers and government officials at the federal, state, and local level; and industry players who wish to be involved in regulatory discussions.
With high-quality academic research building a foundation of unbiased blockchain scholarship, policymakers can take proactive measures to expand their grasp of this technology’s potential and foster the growth of the blockchain industry in the US. Additionally, by facilitating open conversations between regulatory authorities and blockchain lawyers, the Center enables the legal profession to be better equipped to advise entrepreneurs and developers.
Michele Benedetto Neitz is the Founding Director of the Blockchain Law for Social Good Center, the first of its kind in the United States. She teaches Blockchain and the Law, Business Associations, Legal Ethics, and other classes. She has been voted “Most Outstanding Professor” by the graduating class of GGU Law six times, most recently in 2022. Professor Neitz joined the faculty at USF School of Law in January 2023.
Professor Neitz was appointed to advise the California legislature as a member of the California Blockchain Working Group in 2019. She researches and lectures on ethical, regulatory, and social impact issues in blockchain technology, and published the first law review article examining ethics in blockchain technology in January 2020. Her most recent article, entitled “How to Regulate Blockchain’s Real-Life Applications: Lessons from the California Blockchain Working Group,” was published by the peer-reviewed Jurimetrics Journal in 2021. Professor Neitz regularly speaks at tech and law conferences on these issues, including recent presentations at the CITRIS Research Exchange Panel at UC Berkeley and Bilgi University’s Data Driven Economy Lab in Istanbul, Turkey.
Professor Neitz graduated as a Root-Tilden-Scholar from New York University School of Law. Before joining academia, she clerked in the Southern District of California for Judge Napoleon Jones. She also worked as an Equal Justice Works fellow at the Legal Aid Society of San Diego and was an associate at Morrison & Foerster.
Evîn Cheikosman brings eight years of experience across public policy, social justice and technology domains. Formerly, she founded the World Economic Forum's Crypto Sustainability Coalition, where she drove thought leadership, content strategy, marketing and communications, project and event management, strategic planning, and brand development. Over the course of her three years at the Forum, she established the strategic vision and creative foundation for a number of initiatives including the Crypto Impact and Sustainability Accelerator (CISA) and its three pillars of research (environment impact, social impact and governance). Evîn is also a well-regarded public speaker, communicator and advisor on the issues of social justice and blockchain technologies.
Prior to the Forum, Evîn was an Associate with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Office of the Principal Legal Advisor (OPLA). She holds a Masters degree in Public Diplomacy from the University of Southern California's Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, in addition to professional certifications in Sustainability Strategies and Opportunities for Industry from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Foundations in Design Thinking from IDEO University.