The  K1-Center ABC–Austrian  Blockchain  Centre -mission  is  to  be  the  one-stop-shop Austrian   Research   Centre   for Blockchain   (and   related)   technologies   to   be   applied   in industrial   applications   like   industry   4.0   /   IoT   as   well   as   financial,   energy,   logistics, government  and  administrative  applications.  Those  new  applications  and  business  models resulting from collaborations between established players, innovative start-ups and top R&D institutes will be the key for the creation of new jobs and establishing Austria among the top ten innovative countries in Europe.

The  R&D  themes  of  the  centre  have  been  organized  in  five areas  targeting  economic, technological,  applications  as  well  as  political  and  legal  topics  interfacing  with  existing COMET centres like CDP, SBA as well as international Blockchain initiatives.

Area 1 addresses the technical and theoretical foundations of distributed ledger technology. As we have seen in the past, understanding the mathematics and cryptography is important as  these  are  the  foundations  for  consensus  building,  which  is  again  the  very  foundation  of DLT. The area will also address technical aspects of different types of Blockchains and “Non-Blockchains”, Smart Contracts and transparency on the Blockchain. Blockchain & similar distributed ledger technology (DLT) has the potential to fundamentally disrupt the current economic system by enabling the replacement of intermediaries by trust less peer-to-peer systems for value exchange. Area 2 addresses the economic potentials and problems of this new  paradigm. The  area will  study  economic  questions  that  arise  in  any peer-to-peer  system and investigate  DLT  based  decentralized  business  models  in specificapplication domains.

Area 3 focuses on the technological aspects of Blockchains in Industry 4.0 and the Internet of Things.  The  convergence  of Blockchain  with  emerging  technologies  in  those  fields  such  as semantic   database   solutions, machine   learning, cloud   manufacturing,   3D   printing   and machine-to-machine will be at the centre of the activities.

Understanding   socio-economic   and   technical   questions   that   arise   in   blockchain-based systems  requires  novel  data-driven  methods,  services  and  tools.  The  goal  of Area  4is  to investigate, and develop scalable data science methods, tools and services that contribute to a  better  understanding  of  the  structure  and dynamics  of  blockchain-based  ecosystems  and environments. A central outcome will be a horizontally scalable platform that can be used by researchers  and  practitioners  to  answer  scientific  or  business-related  questions.  This  area will also have a strong interdisciplinary and community-oriented and focus and involve data scientists,  practitioners  from  the  start-up  community,  as well  as  scientists  with  various backgrounds  within  and outside  the  ABC  initiative.  From  an  organizational  perspective,  this area could be organized horizontally to other areas.

As  a completely  new technological concept,  DLT also raises  demanding legal questions throughout  all  fields on a  national  and  international  level. Area 5aims  to  address  legal questions  arising  under  current  legislation including  matters  of  private,  public  and  tax  law, tries to address concepts and suggestions for future legal frameworks and starts to analyse further political implications.

Facts

Project nameAustrian Blockchain Centre (ABC)
ProgrammeCOMET K1
TopicBlockchain, Innovation
Project duration01. 10. 2019 — 30. 09. 2023
Project budget20.380.620,00 EUR
ERDF funding10.190.310,00 EUR

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Contact

Prof. (FH) Dr.-Ing. Jens Schumacher
Head of Research Center Business Informatics, Lecturer

+43 5572 792 7118
jens.schumacher@fhv.at

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Martin Dobler, BSc MSc
Scientific Researcher

+43 5572 792 7126
martin.dobler@fhv.at

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