September 2018 Newsletter

 
Blockchain@UBC unites academia, commerce, government, and communities into a research and education-focused ecosystem which leverages the potential of the blockchain and distributed ledger technology to empower individuals and groups in measurably solving human, social and technical problems, starting with the people of Vancouver and expanding out globally. 
What's coming up in October and beyond?
We would like to thank everyone for their patience, as we took some time of in August. Blockchain@UBC is back to being fully operational, and we look forward to having a productive year ahead of us. 

Blockchain@UBC Monthly Research Talk

This month we have something unique planned for our monthly meeting. Instead of a research talk, we will be hosting a "speed dating" session for blockchain researchers!

Title: Blockchain@UBC Gets to know you - Speed Research Date 
Date: October 16th 2018
Description:
 Blockchain@UBC wants to know more about you and your research on a speed research dating event. Our goal is to encourage the engagement between our researchers. You should be able to talk about your research and interests in a very short time. Come and meet new peers on your academic life! 

Follow Blockchain@UBC on LinkedIn for further updates.



Blockchain 101 workshops

Registration for Dr. Chris Rowell's next Blockchain 101 workshop is now open. This one-day workshop is designed for professionals to stay ahead of their competition, and better understand one of the most revolutionary technologies of today. 

For more event details and to register please click here.


Blockchain: Bitcoin and Beyond 


Speakers: Darra Hofman and Chris Rowell
Date: November 7th 2018 (7:00 PM - 8:30 PM
Location: Vancouver Public Library, 350 West Georgia St

Description: Heard about bitcoin? Wondering about the technology behind bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies and what it might mean for you? Join two researchers from Blockchain@UBC, to find out how blockchain technology works and how it could change how you engage online, access services, and more. For more details on the event please go here.


Blockchain@UBC Summer Program, Blockathon, Conference and Roundtable

After the massive success of the 2018 Blockchain@UBC Summer Program, we are proud to announce the 2019 Blockchain@UBC Summer Program. Please put the dates down in your calendar, and stay up-to-date with our Newsletters and LinkedIn for more details regarding enrolment. 


2019 Blockchain@UBC Summer Program: May 26th - June 7th
Blockathon for Social Good: June 8th - June 9th
Blockchain@UBC Annual Conference: June 10th
International Research Roundtable: June 11th - June 12th 


If you are interested to learn more about the Summer Program, or would just like a recap on how successful the 2018 program was, watch the videos below:

Blockchain@UBC Digital ID for the Homeless: Blockathon for Social Good

Vancouver TV covers Blockchain@UBC's 2018 Summer Program
What happened in September?
For an in depth look at what happened over the last few months, please go to the Blockchain@UBC website and check out the newsletters for May, June and July. 


Blockchain@UBC Monthly Research Talk 

Date: September 18th 2018
Speaker: Gleb Naumenko
Topic: Efficient Transaction Relay for Bitcoin

Outline: Peer-to-peer systems often use flooding as an information relay mechanism. Even though flooding protocols are straightforward and robust, they can have high bandwidth requirements for peers in the network. Bitcoin uses flooding to propagate transactions and blocks among the nodes in the network. We calculate the fraction of redundant messages in the network, as well as bandwidth requirements for running a Bitcoin node under present conditions. We also argue about the scalability of cryptocurrencies by calculating bandwidth requirements for future possible conditions. We propose a set of design options for a new transaction relay protocol, which are meant to increase scalability while maintaining crucial properties in the blockchain context. We present an analysis of these design options.

Thank you to Gleb for coming out to speak, and thank you to all those who attended the event. For more details on the event please check our Eventbrite page here.

 
New Team Members
We are proud to announce some new additions to the Blockchain@UBC Team. 


Margo Seltzer
Margo Seltzer is a Canada 150 Research Chair and Cheriton Family Chair in Computer Systems at the University of British Columbia. Her research interests are in systems, construed quite broadly: systems for capturing and accessing provenance, file systems, databases, transaction processing systems, storage and analysis of graph-structured data, new architectures for parallelizing execution, and systems that apply technology to problems in healthcare.

She is the author of several widely-used software packages including database and transaction libraries and the 4.4BSD log-structured file system. Dr. Seltzer was a founder and CTO of Sleepycat Software, the makers of Berkeley DB, and is now an Architect at Oracle Corporation. She serves on the Computer Science and Telecommunications Board (CSTB) of the National Academies and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Information Science and Technology (ISAT) study group.




Dr. Jane Z. Wang

Since 2004, Dr. Wang has been with the Department Electrical and Computer Engineering at UBC. Dr. Wang's research interests are in the broad areas of statistical signal processing, with applications to information security, biomedical imaging, genomic, and wireless communications. She co-received the 2004 EURASIP Best Paper Award and 2005 Best Paper Award from IEEE Signal Processing Society, and a Junior Early Career Scholar Award from Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Studies at the University of British Columbia in 2005. She is the chair and founder of the IEEE Vancouver SP chapter. She was Finance Chair of IEEE International Workshop on Genomic Signal Processing and Statistics 2005 (GENSIPS05).



Saaed Dyantkhar

Saeed leads UBC Studios (ubcstudios.ubc.ca) and the UBC Emerging Media Lab (eml.ubc.ca). EML provides a venue for the UBC community to explore and experiment with immersive technologies such as virtual and augmented reality (AR/VR). 

In his spare time, Saeed works on non-profit initiatives to bring people from different cultures closer and help them understand each other better with the hope to reduce conflicts and promote peace. He co-founded an initiative to promote media literacy and cultural exchange at an international level and helped publish The Source/La Source newspaper, a forum for diversity in Vancouver (thelasource.com). 



Chang Lu

Chang Lu is a visiting Doctoral Student and Ph.D. Candidate in Strategic Management and Organization at the University of Alberta. He will be working with Marc-David Seidel and Victoria Lemieux on a project investigating the "Paradoxical Adoption of Blockchain in Healthcare Data Sharing: The Patterns, Consequences and Mediating Mechanisms of Challenging yet Succumbing to Incumbents

 
Recent Call for Papers
Call for papers: Pervasive and Mobile Computing

The aim of this special issue is to gather latest research results concerning blockchain technology and its application on relevant scenarios, such as the ones previously listed. Researchers, experts, and scholars from both industry and academia are encouraged to present their recent achievements and research directions in this area.

Important Dates:
Submission deadline: 15 November, 2018
Acceptance notification: 15 May, 2019
Expected Publication of the Special Issue: 15 July, 2019

For more information regarding scope, topics of interest and guest editors, please go
here.
Publications, PR and Awards
1)  Marc-David Seidel presented to the Sauder Development & Alumni Engagement staff on the HIBAR Alliance and Blockchain@UBC cluster in August 2018.

2)  Chris Rowell presented to the Sauder Development & Alumni Engagement  staff on Blockchain 101 in August 2018.

3)  Marc-David Seidel served as a discussant in a symposium entitled, "Digital ledger technology: How blockchain is changing organizations and markets" jointly sponsored by the Organization & Management Theory and Strategy divisions of the Academy of Management in Chicago in August 2018.

4) Chris Rowell presented a paper co-authored with Marc-David Seidel entitled "Surviving in Platform Ecosystems Based on Distributed Trust Technologies: A Framework and Research Agenda" in a symposium sponsored by the Technology & Innovation Management division of the Academy of Management entitled, "Coordination, Governance, and Trust: The Impact of Blockchain on Organizations" in Chicago in August 2018.

5) Ning Nan presented a paper entitled "Self-Organized Governance in Blockchain-based Tokenized Markets" in a symposium sponsored by the Technology & Innovation Management division of the Academy of Management entitled, "Coordination, Governance, and Trust: The Impact of Blockchain on Organizations" in Chicago in August 2018.

6) Lisa Cohen presented a paper co-authored with Marc-David Seidel entitled, "Bringing the Inside Out and the Outside In: How Hiring Processes Bridge Across Startup-Ecosystem Boundaries" at the INSEAD Doriot Entrepreneurship Conference (IDEC) in Fontainebleau, France in August 2018.

7) 
Dr. Victoria Lemieux presented a keynote address at Blockchain Technology Symposium (BTS' 18) - from Hype to Reality on "Managing Digital Information on Blockchains and Distributed Ledgers as Evidence for Social Good”: http://www.fields.utoronto.ca/activities/18-19/blockchain_technology


8) The HIBAR Research Alliance agreement has now been signed by the University of British Columbia, Arizona State University, University of Idaho, University of California Los Angeles, University of California San Diego, University of Maryland, University of South Florida, and Washington State University to jointly work on improvement of the university research ecosystem through increasing Highly Integrative Basic and Responsive (HIBAR) research. Blockchain@UBC was one of the first HIBAR groups at UBC, and serves as a model for others. Details of the Alliance are available here: 
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1U5bDqjzaVte0OM1QmWs7XTpOCnTyBZMo

9) Chen Feng has submitted a paper in collaboration with Rotman School of Management (University of Toronto).

Title: Initial Coin Offerings, Blockchain Technology, and Voluntary Disclosures

Abstract: Initial coin offering (ICO) has emerged as a major financing tool for blockchain-based entrepreneurial ventures. We evaluate whether an ICO project needs a blockchain platform or not and develop an ICO rating system, based on information disclosed voluntarily by the ICO issuers in the so-called “white paper.” We find that ICO projects with a higher rating raised more funding at ICOs, are more likely to exceed the minimum funding target, and are closer to the maximum funding target. However, the rating is not associated with the likelihood of the ICOs being listed in a cryptocurrency exchange within the first 180 days after the end of the ICO period. 

Conference: Financial Accounting and Reporting Section Meeting (FARS)


 
Locations

Blockchain Research Lab

With the generous support of the Institute for Computing, Information and Cognitive Systems (ICICS), Blockchain Research Lab is located in Room 188 of the ICICS building. 

UBC Vancouver 

Our main office is located in the Forest Sciences Centre Building, FSC 3641 – 2424 Main Mall, Vancouver. If you are in and around FSC, please do drop by on Tuesdays and Thursdays to say hello (although drop Sean an email just to check that he’ll be in office). 

UBC Okanagan

Assistant Professor Chen Feng, our UBC Okanagan co-cluster lead, is located in office EME 4285, in the School of Engineering - 1137 Alumni Ave, Kelowna, BC. He can be contacted by telephone (Tel: 250-807-8286) or email (chen.feng@ubc.ca). He is hosting a computer node for BSafe.network.

Online Channels

Our Slack workspace is an open community for anyone to join. Please feel free to share this open invitation to Join our Slack.app Community. 

Follow our Twitter channel here: https://twitter.com/blockchainubc
 

Our mailing address is:
Forest Sciences Centre Building
FSC 3641 – 2424 Main Mall
Vancouver BC Canada V6T 1Z4


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