SCRF has been invited to host an independent research track as part of the 2021 Smart Contract Summit. We’ve chosen to present five panel discussions that touch on some of the most timely issues facing the blockchain space: “Identity and Reputation”, “Governance Theory”, “Governance Implementation”, “Privacy and SNARKS”, and “CBDCs and Blockchain”.
In this series of threads, we will be providing some deeper insight into the panel topics, the participants, and where interested viewers can find their most relevant works.
The Smart Contract Research Forum (SCRF) is where academics, researchers, and industry leaders from all over the world come together to discuss research, solicit thoughtful peer review, and find new projects on which to collaborate. You can find additional information about our programs, grants, and initiatives in our repo; or feel free to join us in our chat.
What role can distributed ledger technologies (DLT) play in reducing wealth inequality and building stronger communities?
This panel explores how the transparency inherent to Distributed Ledger Technologies can be used to increase community trust and help turn those relationships into robust local economies. Both the projects discussed by our panelists (Defterhȃne Protocol and ZUZ) allow users to monetize their reputations. Defterhȃne, through check-based credit creation and transfer, and ZUZ, by allowing local businesses to issue localcoins that backed by their own goods and services.
We explore the emergent consequences of allowing users to mint and trade individually-backed tokens, the tensions between transparency and privacy, how systems can increase trust and economic value in a community, how they can lead to increasingly sustainable economies, and finally, how to position this kind of technology so it can be used by everyday users from around the globe.
Cemil is an entrepreneur, artist-engineer, part-time academician. He has more than twenty years of experience in digital currencies and gaming. He holds an MFA in Computer Graphics from Bilkent University and a BA in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from Boğaziçi University. Within an early-stage start-up his team developed a 3D-virtual world and a real-world compatible currency with venture capital from Silicon Valley between 2008 and 2014. Since 2018 he has been the co-founder of Defterhȃne, a blockchain start-up inspired by a 40-year-old decentralized credit creation instrument used in Turkey. He is also a university lecturer at Istanbul’s prestigious Boğaziçi University, where he teaches a course on blockchains.
Some of Cemil’s work:
Relevant links for Cemil:
- Twitter: @jetwell
- LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/cemilturun
- Medium: https://cemilturun.medium.com/
Seth has been a faculty member of the Department of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University since 1997. He received his Ph.D. in Computer Science at the University of California at Berkeley and B.S. from Princeton University. Before attending UC Berkeley, Seth was CEO and founder of Complete Computer Corporation which developed and marketed object-oriented programming tools.
Seth’s main research agenda focuses broadly on ensembles: large collections of interacting agents. In the area of reconfigurable computing, he investigated how to compile high-level programming languages directly into configurations that could harness the large ensemble of gates for computing. He then began investigating how ensembles of molecules could be used to create circuits; investigating how to design, manufacture, and use molecular-scale devices for computing. This led to research into programmable matter; an ensemble of computing elements that can be programmed to work together to produce changes in the physical properties of the ensemble.
Since returning from his most recent start-up, he has moved his focus to ensembles of people and is investigating the interaction of technology, work, and money. In particular, he is interested in understanding, quantitatively, the impact of technological progress on the labor market and innovation. He is developing social technology and alternative monetary systems that can reduce poverty and opportunity inequality as well as support innovation and creativity in a post-labor economy. His main effort is on ZUZ, a financial inclusion tool that combines lending and payment on a single distributed ledger-based system. ZUZ builds on local trust to increase access to capital and create a functioning bottom-up community currency from each individually issued ZUZ.
Some of Seth’s work:
- BoLT: Building on Local Trust to Solve Lending Market Failure (2020)
- Active messages: a mechanism for integrated communication and computation (1992)
- Magnetic resonant coupling as a potential means for wireless power transfer to multiple small receivers (2009)
Relevant links for Seth:
- LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/sethcopengoldstein/
- CMU Website: https://csd.cmu.edu/people/faculty/seth-goldstein
- Company Website: https://zuzlab.com/
Some of the questions we’ll explore during the panel include:
- How do you track or quantify reputation within a community?
- What are the benefits of social reputation in credit or purchasing markets?
- What happens if someone defaults on their financial obligation?
- What design choices go into creating reputation systems?
- What is used to register someone’s identity in the system?
- Is having a pseudo anonymous identity possible?
- Can people pay for privacy?
- How do you build trust in such systems (both trust in the system and trust amongst people)?
- What tensions exist between transparency and privacy?
The Summit is taking place virtually from August 5-7. The panel will air from 2:50p-3:30p on August 5th. Get your free tickets here.