Evan Sylbert

Date of Award


First Advisor

Harold Hastings

Second Advisor

Mike Bergman


The profile of your online data, your browsing behavior, your purchasing habits—these are all extensions of your physical and intellectual person, and you should own them just the same. Anything existing in the virtual world—on any network, in any database— derived from your being should be yours to own and keep; any party seeking to utilize this data should pay a small access fee, but only at your discretion. This is the paradigm of user data I wish to see in the world, but it is a far cry from the status quo. Today, internet giants seduce consumers with free services while they amass untold fortunes by storing and selling every last byte of your online footprint. To shift the paradigm of user data, it’s only practical to start small. Instead of targeting Facebook or Google, this thesis details a proof-of-concept new model for transactions in the retail cannabis industry in the state of Massachusetts. Using a permissioned blockchain as the technical infrastructure of this new model for transactions (NMT) allows user data to be returned to the possession and ownership of the user, while also providing the Massachusetts state government real-time view and control of all legal cannabis-related processes occurring in the state, in a cryptographically-secured, immutable database.

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