Digital Nation Insurance
A look into the idea of insuring an entire nation digitally if it were to ever physically disappear
I’ve had this article stored in drafts for a while, so thought I’d finally get it out to the world. The topic is Digital Nation Insurance, something that’s not currently being looked at, but could be a thing in the future. It was sparked by my connection to Tuvalu, a nation with very real risks of losing its land due to rising ocean levels.
***As a disclaimer, I have no background in insurance, so treat this article as purely conceptual. However, there could be someone out there who sees the validity in it, and might be willing to work together with us at Faiā on it. We are currently exploring.***
If we look at insurance in general, it is essentially a subscription service for “in case anything happens.” Each month, you pay your fees, and hope that if anything bad happens to you, insurance will cover you. Most adults take out the basics of life, health and/or travel insurance because it’s the thing to do.
In the case of Digital Nation Insurance (DNI), we’re looking specifically at the scenario of “if our nation disappears, then X.” That X could include a digital component. So the thinking is that a DNI could incorporate:
- Creating digital twins of an entire nation and its assets
- Uploading to the “metaverse”
- Using a scaleable blockchain as the proof ledger
- Attaching appropriate legal protections via smart contracts
- Creating this new type of insurance for entire nations (e.g. Tuvalu)
To reiterate, the thinking here is that if anything were to physically happen to a nation due to something like rising ocean levels, then the “digital twin” could be used as a backup to re-instate all key parts of said nation. If 3D-printing gets to the level I think it may in time, the digital twin in the metaverse could be used as a blueprint to terra-form/recreate places around the world (in severe cases such as the one I’ve described). If places like Dubai can create luxury islands, just because, then money could be more intelligently redirected to offer such solutions for nations whose very survival is at risk.
If using blockchain-based infrastructure, individual citizens could have their homes re-built [reliably] as imprinted in the metaverse. Perhaps there might need to be a device that continuously backs up real-world imagery (similar to Google Maps), but infused with artifacts from an individual’s own life, voluntarily provided and owned by them, on the blockchain.
There’s potential grey ethical areas here, which would need to be explored, but the world is already moving towards this type of future. So the thinking is how best to protect people, communities, and even nations, in the eventuality of such a scenario.
“Praemonitus, praemunitus. Forewarned is forearmed.”
This may all sound very Black Mirror, but it’s a reality that’s emerging. We already have 3D-printing, people living fully digital lives, and Elon Musk’s Neuralink, which will give people the ability to install chips into their brain and interact more seamlessly with machines.
As a result, if we’re looking at the long-term, a DNI type of insurance (or perhaps even a complementary service) may include the digitization of an entire nation — from physical to legal to cultural assets — and enable one to simply upload the “backup” from the metaverse, back into the real world.
We saw the beginnings of this with Ubisoft’s game franchise Assassin’s Creed, from 2007, which took historical evocation to a whole new level by studying old blueprints of various cities, recreating them for their games, and then inspiring others to use the same technology to restore real-world heritage sites (e.g. Notre Dame). With the Notre Dame example, it didn’t fully pan out (because the Ubisoft models were tweaked for their game-worlds), but it did inspire others to push the concept further.
What do you think of the Digital Nation Insurance concept? Would it work? Why or why not? Feel free to share your comments below.