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Hedera Hashgraph announces governing council members

Tony Zerucha



Hedera Hashgraph, a next-generation public ledger designed to have highly diversified governance and the most distributed consensus at scale, today announced the first members of the Hedera Hashgraph Council, which will govern changes to the software run by millions of Hedera distributed nodes over time.

The governing council will bring stability and guaranteed continued decentralization to the Hedera Hashgraph distributed public ledger. The initial members will be Deutsche Telekom, DLA Piper, Magazine Luiza, Nomura Holdings, Inc., and Swisscom Blockchain AG. 

Hedera’s vision is to create a safer, fairer, more secure internet — one in which online communities can collectively create and evolve shared worlds in cyberspace, and on which developers can build trusted applications that enable safe collaboration and commerce, without entrusting a central organization with personal data. To realize this vision, Hedera has focused on addressing four fundamental roadblocks to the adoption of public distributed ledger technology — technology, security, stability, and governance.

Public distributed ledgers aim to provide decentralized systems, in which anyone can participate and benefit from them. But a peer-reviewed study from the Initiative for Cryptocurrencies and Contracts (IC3) at Cornell University, on Decentralization in Bitcoin and Ethereum, found the world’s largest public ledgers have actually become more centralized over time. The study found the top four Bitcoin miners and top three Ethereum miners control more than half of the world’s hash rate, in part due to the lack of a governance model that ensures continued decentralization. 

Hedera does not require mining or proof of work, and further plans to address ongoing decentralization concerns by separating governance from consensus. The governance model is based on the original model used by National BankAmericard Inc., founded in 1968, and later renamed VISA. It is designed in a way that ensures the governing council can be trusted to do what’s in the best interest of the Hedera network, that no single company has control, and that the Council cannot be unduly influenced by individual members or node operators.

“A general-purpose public ledger should be governed by representatives from a broad range of market sectors and geographies, each with world-class expertise in their respective industries,” said Mance Harmon, CEO of Hedera. “With this inaugural group, we are demonstrating the caliber of organizations it takes to deliver long-lasting, stable governance for the industry’s first enterprise-ready public ledger suitable for mission-critical applications. Hedera’s governing members will provide the technical expertise to manage the technical roadmap, business expertise to manage business operations, expertise in economics and currency markets to manage the cryptocurrency, and legal expertise to help navigate the evolving regulatory environment. With the Hedera Hashgraph Council, you are seeing a true distributed governance model finally come to fruition, and we could not be more excited about this first group of council members.”

Legal and technical controls ensure continued decentralization 

Hedera will use a combination of technical and legal controls to give the governing council mechanisms to promote stability and ensure the network will never fork. The consensus model ensures that the Hedera network will expand to many millions of nodes voting on the order of transactions in a highly distributed network.

Governing member remarks

John Calian, SVP, head of T-Labs & The Blockchain Group, Deutsche Telekom:

“Distributed ledger technology is fundamentally changing business models and will evolve all types of systems in our society. Hedera has uniquely thought through the security, governance and scalability concerns that have hampered early iterations of blockchain technology, and have created a public distributed ledger and governing council that will ensure long-term stability, distributed governance, and security. We are thrilled to be an initial governing member of the Hedera Hashgraph Council, to help shepherd this important technology as it is adopted by the market.”

Scott Thiel, partner at DLA Piper:

“DLA Piper has been at the forefront of helping organizations understand legal frameworks and issues in leveraging blockchain and distributed ledger technology (DLT) for a number of years now, and is also adopting such technology in its own client solutions. Hedera uniquely enables many mechanisms within smart contracts – including KYC and AML compliance – which are significant breakthroughs in DLT. As we work to bring these kinds of technologies to our clients, we are pleased to join the Hedera Hashgraph Council as an inaugural governing member, to help further shape the adoption of DLT across organizations and governments globally.”

Kamal Youssefi, industry lead enterprise blockchain, Swisscom Blockchain AG:

“Switzerland has a long standing reputation as a trust anchor with its neutrality, stability and safety to conduct international business and accomplish consensus amongst nations and industries. Swisscom Blockchain AG capitalizes on the same brand of trust to enable effective, secure and compliant implementation of blockchain use cases by using a technology that brings organizations and industries together. With their practical model for highly distributed governance and consensus, Hedera is visionary in the industry. They are designing one of the most fair, secure, and distributed ledger options, and we are proud to be an initial governing member of the Hedera Hashgraph Council.”

Simon Olson, director of new business development and investor relations at Magazine Luiza:

“For 60 years we have been embracing new technologies to help us achieve our business goals.  In the early 1990s, we opened tiny showrooms — without physical inventory — in small towns that couldn’t support our traditional store format, selling products “virtually” by showing customers video-taped images of the merchandise. We believe that distributed ledger technologies and decentralized applications represent a disruptive opportunity and are excited to be inaugural members of the Hedera Hashgraph Governing Council.”


For more information, please read the Hedera whitepaper at


Tony Zerucha

Tony Zerucha is an alternative finance journalist with more than seven years experience in the space. The author of more than 1,000 articles, Tony was named LendIt's 2018 Journalist of the Year.

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