Blockchain and Science Working Group

Blockchain technology has the capacity to make digital goods immutable, transparent, externally provable, decentralized, and distributed. Besides the initial experiment or data acquisition, all remaining parts of the research cycle could take place within a blockchain system. Attribution, data, data post processing, publication, research evaluation, incentivization, and research fund distribution would thereby become comprehensible, open (at will) and provable to the external world. Currently, scientists must be trusted to provide a true and useful representation of their research results in their final publication; blockchain would make much larger parts of the research cycle open to scientific self-correction. This bears the potential to be a new approach to the current reproducibility crisis in science, and could ‘reduce waste and make more research results true’. Here is a selection of the Blockchain and Science Working Group research topics:

Currently, only parts of the research process are open to scientific self-correction by peer review. Blockchainified research could make larger parts of the process open to scientific self-correction, for example with pre-registered study design on the blockchain.

Currently, there is a need for trusted authorities to assure the integrity of approval studies. Blockchainified data handling could make much larger parts of the process immutable: drug trials, or new therapy trials, just to name a few.

Blockchain allows for new ways of research money distribution, for example through continues crowd funding on the blockchain using smart contracts and token issuance.

The Blockchain and Science Working Group is Lead by PD Dr. Soenke Bartling, who has initiated following living document on Blockchain for Open Science and Knowledge Creation. Please feel free to contribute, reuse and share. If you are already working on similar research projects or initiatives and would like to share experience please connect Soenke @ Blockchain for Science.

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