Early this year, WU established the Research Institute for Cryptoeconomics, concentrating the interdisciplinary expertise of approximately 30 researchers from eight departments [https://www.wu.ac.at/cryptoeconomics/team] in the field of blockchain technology, cryptocurrencies, and distributed ledger technology. It is currently the largest and most diverse research facility of its kind worldwide.
Cryptoeconomics is a young discipline with far-reaching technological and socioeconomic implications, making WU’s interdisciplinary approach particularly relevant for the future. “We have ideal conditions for research into all aspects of cryptoeconomics and for influencing the direction it takes,” says WU Rector Edeltraud Hanappi-Egger. “We are keeping an eye on what’s going on in the field internationally. Most research institutions are either still in development, very small, or focus only on one specific area,” says Shermin Voshmgir, institute director and founder of Berlin’s BlockchainHub [https://blockchainhub.net]. The institute is co-directed by academic head Alfred Taudes.
Interest in the institute’s activities is huge. Institute researchers share their knowledge and expertise with the scientific community, the public, the media, the government, and the business community. “The institute has reacted to the demand for information with a series of lectures and conferences [https://www.wu.ac.at/en/cryptoeconomics/former-events] and has been able to answer many questions posed by private individuals, students, legislators, and businesspeople. The rush shows no signs of slowing,” reports Shermin Voshmgir. The institute also supports a Student Chapter that already has over 100 members. The first official research project on blockchain technology and sustainability, “Programming a Sustainable World,” has been initiated in cooperation with the RCE Vienna [https://www.rce-vienna.at], UNIDO [https://www.unido.org], and other national and international governmental institutions and NGOs.