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Blockchain and cryptocurrencies SASS

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Course overview

This course offers an introduction to the technology of the blockchain and the economic incentives behind it, together with an overview of how the blockchain fits in the general economic environment.

The first day has an added focus on financial topics such as pricing, initial coin offerings (ICOs) and market manipulation, whereas the second day focuses on legal and regulatory issues, such as data protection, privacy and securities.

Participants will have the opportunity to network with practitioners from law and fintech, as well as academics that combine research and consulting expertise in the blockchain space.

View more information about the course The Economics, Finance and Law of Blockchain.

Course outcomes

Course outcomes

The course provides an overview of blockchain and Distributed Ledger Technologies (DLT), from an economic point of view. You will learn the technical foundations for DLTs, and how economic incentives are leveraged in distributed consensus. You will analyse the economic incentives of different stakeholders in the ecosystem (miners, protocol and application designers, consumers, competitors, investors, regulators). You will learn how economic engineering plays a major role in the design of layer 2 technologies, such as side chains and smart contracts. You will explore how DLTs embed in the general economic landscape and what are some promising use cases, how theories of money apply (or don't) to cryptocurrencies and tokens, and how regulation is beginning to influence this space.

The finance focus of the first day covers financial aspects of DLTs: You will learn the market microstructure of cryptocurrency markets, the trading instrument and exchanges, as well as understanding risk exposures and volatility dynamics. You will learn how cryptocurrencies are priced in the market, how the financial industry treats this new asset class, how prices are subject to market manipulation, and how ICOs operate.

The law focus of the second day covers legal aspects of DLTs: You will learn how regulatory frameworks apply to blockchain and DLTs and selected topics such as cryptocurrencies, securities or transactions, what the current thinking and guidance of the regulators are on these new technologies, and how the issues of privacy and data protection, as expressed in the recent EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), apply to blockchains and DLTs.

Eligibility

Eligibility

Prerequisite knowledge

The courses are aimed at economists, lawyers, financial practitioners and regulators, entrepreneurs and software engineers.

Module leaders

  • Dr Spyros Galanis

    Since 2019, I am a Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor) at the Department of Economics of City, University of London. Before, I was an Associate Professor at the Department of Economics of the University of Southampton. My research interests include decision theory, finance, game theory and experiments.

    My main research focuses ...

  • Dr Jan Christoph Schlegel

    I am a microeconomist working in market design, matching theory and on topics in the intersection of economics and computer science.

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