Dissertation, Universidad de Buenos Aires (Uba) (2021
The 21st century is undergoing an unprecedented productivity shift due to the use of disruptive technologies, including artificial intelligence, cloud computing, blockchain, big data, robotics, and augmented reality, among others. The use of these technologies is expanding across all sectors of the economy, blurring the boundaries between different activities, and digital systems are permeating them, leading to a reevaluation of knowledge and techniques in various fields of study. Accounting is not exempt from this reality, and blockchain technology is emerging as a methodology that brings about substantial changes in topics that have been the conceptual and technical foundation of the discipline, such as double-entry bookkeeping.
This essay aims to approach blockchain from two objectives. The first is to present blockchain technology as a tool for accounting. This technology enables a paradigm shift in accounting by providing more transparent, secure, and reliable information. This leads to a review and reconsideration of certain roles of professionals in the field of economics, such as the external auditor as a guarantor of the reasonableness of accounting information. The conceptual frameworks related to the topic and how blockchain enables the incorporation of a third distributed ledger are presented.
The second approach of the essay seeks to analyze the responses of accounting regulations to a new type of assets that arise with the advent of blockchain, such as cryptocurrencies in general. The position adopted by the IASB is shown, which fails to provide a convincing response and has led to different regulatory bodies in various countries adopting their own positions. The result of the analysis is presented in a comparative table.
The essay concludes by reflecting on the changes brought about by this new technology and the role that academia should play.