Researcher, ETLA & Professor of Practice, Digital Operations, Aalto University
Finnish blockchain ecosystem consisting of public sector, research organisations and companies fully exploits the potential of blockchain technology in their research, business and technology portfolio. Finnish blockchain development and solutions are internationally competitive and well-known.
The overall objective of the project is to form an understanding of blockchain tools, technologies, solutions and business possibilities in different domain areas, first focusing on Finnish business environment. Long-term objective is international level competitiveness.
In the BOND project, the blockchain technology will studied from three inter-connected viewpoints:
The blockchain technology application stack enables new, innovative applications. Blockchain itself has been described as shared ledgers that are secure, decentralized, public, and immutable. What type of new products, services and ecosystems does blockchain enable? Are most beneficial use cases limited to certain areas of business or industry? What are the use cases where the qualities of blockchain are absolutely necessary? In what type of scenarios other similar technologies should be preferred? How can private, semi-private and public blockchains be utilized most efficiently, and how can they be combined with other technologies? What are the best ways to utilize smart contracts? Does using blockchain change the user experience in some way? What sorts of investments are required to start using blockchain in products or services?
From the technological viewpoint, blockchain is an encrypted, decentralized database of transactions that is stored on a network of peer-to-peer computers. What is the best way to design unconstrained peer-to-peer blockchain networks in specific cases with many actors? Are there other ways to form the network so that it might constrain size of participants by limiting membership to trusted entities? The way that the Bitcoin network is set up means that the total output of the network (in terms of adding blocks to the chain) remains constant regardless of the size of the network. This doesn’t seem scalable, either in terms of energy consumption or in terms of handling growing amounts of activity. How to create something that is more scalable and energy efficient? What are the best current blockchain tools and platforms? What are the limitations of smart contracts? What are the physical requirements for blockchain-powered smart gadgets?
Blockchain is the enabler for the Internet-of-Value — with blockchain different types of digital assets can be sent to anyone and the network will validate the transactions. Using blockchain, completely new transactions are possible with completely new and different actors in an automated and self-governed way. As we know, the business environment is rapidly changing. There is an urgent need for companies to change their business models more circular by closing the material loops and preserving the material value as long as possible. Blockchain is a significant enabler and accelerator of this change by increasing the efficiency of using resources, sharing resources as well as selling new and used products. How does this new and unique opportunity affect the current business ecosystems, business models and value networks? What type of the new, disruptive business models and value networks does it enable?
The project is co-ordinated by VTT (Technical Research Centre of Finland) . Other partners include, Etla and Aalto University.