Popchain is a Decentralized Open Census Protocol application that enables under-counted and under-represented communities to feel safe about sharing personal information with the 2020 Census. We insure that people can participate without fearing that their personal data will be censored or compromised by a third party. We do this through the use of encrypted identity management systems via uPort and using smart contracts to store questionnaire responses securely on the Ethereum blockchain. The protocol will also give participants the power to decide what and how questions are asked through a network consensus model.
The United States Decennial Census acts as a representation of the makeup of the nation’s people. As written in the U.S. constitution, this count of the population and housing occurs every 10 years.
The United State Decennial Census provides much needed data to inform how billions of federal dollars are distributed for essential services and infrastructure that is vital to these communities. In addition, it is essential to provide communities with the right number of representatives in government.
Privacy risks (ex. Citizen Question)
There is growing concern from immigrant communities about the privacy of their data and sharing their personal information with the government, especially with the current administration’s push to reintroduce the citizenship question in the 2020 Census.
Erasure of identities
In 2020, same-sex couples will be counted in the proposed questions, however the problem is that people who are not in same-sex partnered and/or married couples are not counted in any other way. That’s why having a question that focuses on sexuality is important. Individuals regardless of their relationship status should be counted.
In addition, for gender only female and male options are offered, still erasing the existence of other genders specifically transgender and intersex people who have the rights to advocacy and services as well.
Data privacy and security is a growing concern with sharing data online and we believe that Blockchain is the way that we can prevent fraud and accidental data exposure. A strained budget and limited resources and overall capacity to implement the Census are also big concerns that lead to human error and mistakes that go undetected that effect the reliability of the information collected.