Stanford University computer scientists have launched the Center for Blockchain Research, which will bring together faculty, post-docs, students, and visitors from the fields of computer science, economics, law, and engineering to research cryptocurrency and blockchain technology, with the ultimate goal of developing new technology. The center will be directed by Dan Boneh and David Mazieres.

The Center for Blockchain Research is sponsored by some major players in the blockchain field including the Ethereum Foundation, Protocol Labs, Interchain Foundation, OmiseGO, Dfinity and Polychain. Vitalik Buterin, the founder of Ethereum, posted his enthusiasm for Stanford’s new research center on Twitter.

Dan Boneh says “blockchains will become increasingly critical to doing business globally” and “once you get into the details you quickly realize that this area will generate many PhD theses across all of computer science and beyond“.

The Blockchain Research Center will be offering a new course to Stanford students, CS251: Cryptocurrencies and Blockchain Technologies, which will cover all aspects of cryptocurrency and blockchain technology with a focus on Bitcoin and Ethereum. It is remarkable that less than then years after Bitcoin’s genesis in 2009, it has become an official college course at one of the top universities in the United States.

Even though the Center for Blockchain Research has just been officially announced, Stanford professors have already been actively researching and publishing about blockchain technology. Their papers so far include ‘Compact multi-signatures for small blockchains’, ‘Verifiable delay functions’, ‘Bulletproofs: Short Proofs for Coincidental Transactions and More’, ‘Weak Compression and (In)security of Rational Proofs of Storage’, ‘Proofs-of-delay and randomness beacons in Ethereum’, ‘Incentive Compatibility of Bitcoin Mining Pool Reward Functions’, and ‘Provisions: Privacy-preserving proofs of solvency for Bitcoin exchanges’. Most of this research was published in the last year.

Stanford University was established in 1891 and is in a prime location near Silicon Valley, California. It is ranked in the top 10 out of all the universities in the world and has produced numerous Nobel Laureates, billionaires, government officials, and astronauts. Considering the university’s reputation, the Stanford University Center for Blockchain Research has potential to be a breeding ground for important advancements in blockchain technology.


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