Cryptocurrencies: Bad, Good, and Everything In Between

CoDE’s Dr Richard Adams along with Dr Glenn Parry, with an award from RCUK’s Digital Economy NEMODE Network+, organised two influential workshops for mixed practitioner, policy-maker and academic audiences exploring Cryptocurrencies and the applications of Blockchain.

The first workshop, Cryptocurrencies: Evil Empire or Digital Saviour? run in association with the Oxford Technology Media & Finance Network, was held at Oxford University’s prestigious new Mathematics Institute. Following opening statements from a distinguished panel including Dr Vili Lehdonvirta of The Oxford Internet Institute, John Edge Managing Partner of Redrose, Danny Barugh of LondonLink Bitcoin brokers and Mark Lamb CEO of CoinFloor, the UK’s leading Bitcoin Exchange, delegates engaged in a wide-ranging discussion of technical possibilities and social and commercial implications of blockchain applications, all under the expert guidance of the panel’s moderator Robert Kay, CEO of GovCoin Systems.

The second workshop took place in London at techUK’s office and focused on the emerging architectures and applications of distributed ledger in financial services. Moderated by Dr Richard Adams (UWE) and Professor Alistair Milne (Loughborough), the emerging architecture was examined, first, from a practice perspective (Practical applications of permissioned blockchains in the finance industry: Peter Randall, COO SETL with Dr Pinar Emirdag, CEO, Complymatic acting as respondent) and second, from a research perspective (Practical Byzantine Fault Tolerance and Payment Networks: Distributed Transaction Clearing Beyond Blockchains: Julian Williams, Professor of Accounting and Finance, Durham University Business School with Philip Bond, Visiting Professor, Departments of Engineering Mathematics and Computer Science, Bristol University, and Visiting Professor Oxford Centre for Industrial and Applied Mathematics, Oxford University acting as respondent). These presentations were then followed by another open discussion between audience and a panel including: Leda Glyptis (Global Markets Director, Sapient); Alistair Milne (Loughborough University School of Business and Economics); Salome Parulava (Consultant, Consult Hyperion); Peter Randall (COO, SETL); and Julian Williams (Durham University Business School).

To date, in excess of 80 senior delegates from across industry, policy-making and academia have attended these workshops to learn about and share ideas on the impact that blockchain will have for government, financial services and broader business. Working with consultants Sopra Steria one more event is planned bringing together senior Government officials, with FinTech and Financial Services experts from practice and academia. Dr Adams and Dr Parry are also editing a special issue of Strategic Change: Briefings in Entrepreneurial Finance to capture the implications for industry and practice in this fast moving area.

Cutting-edge thought leadership on the Digital Economy is what the CoDE team is all about. Do you know how the new economic models will affect your business? Get in touch to find out where our research is taking us.

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About the Author : Kris Henley

Communications and Outreach for Surrey Business School's Centre for the Digital Economy, a newly-founded research centre to explore the implications of the Digital Economy for business, government and society.