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NFTs and Self-Sovereign Identity: Opportunities and Challenges
  • Gowher Majeed Parry,
  • Joshua Ellul
Gowher Majeed Parry
Centre for Distributed Ledger Technologies, University of Malta, tal-Qroqq
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Joshua Ellul
Department of Computer Science, University of Malta, tal-Qroqq


Non-fungible Tokens (NFTs) are emblematic of unique digital assets that offer a distinct proprietorship and value creation, whilst Self-sovereign Identity (SSI) imbues individuals with the capacity to govern their personal data and identifying information. The conceptualization of an NFT-based Self-sovereign Identity is still under contemplation within the scholarly community. Despite initial assertions by researchers concerning the potential advantages of integrating NFTs with Self-sovereign identity, the manifestation of systems based on this amalgamation has yet to materialize in pragmatic circumstances. This research paper explores the prospective benefits and impediments associated with the synthesis of Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) and Self-Sovereign Identity (SSI). It further unveils a generalized operation flow of an NFT-based SSI, the various iterations of NFTs that can be deployed in the realm of SSI, and an array of refined and expanded SSI principles specific to NFT-based SSI. The paper delves into the technical, legal, standardization, and governance challenges that might ensue from this amalgamation. This research paper accentuates the significance of tackling these obstacles to harness their potential for industry transformation and individual empowerment. Moreover, the paper examines prospective research and developmental trajectories, including technological progressions, potential reverberations on industries and societal structures, as well as the emergence of new business models and revenue streams. It also reiterates the importance of addressing these challenges to actualize the full potential of these emerging technologies. This research endeavor is a pioneering exploration in the realm of NFT-based Self-sovereign Identity.
09 Apr 2024Submitted to TechRxiv
16 Apr 2024Published in TechRxiv