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  • 2021hamedphd

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Towards Sustainable Blockchains: Cryptocurrency Treasury and General Decision-making Systems with Provably Secure Delegable Blockchain-based Voting

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

Publication date30/07/2021
Number of pages226
Awarding Institution
Award date30/07/2021
  • Lancaster University
<mark>Original language</mark>English


The blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies, its most prevalent application, continue to gain acceptance and wide traction in research and practice within academia and the industry because of its promise in decentralised and distributed computing. Notably, the meteoric rise in the value and number of cryptocurrencies since the creation of Bitcoin in 2009 have ushered in newer innovations and interventions that addressed some of the prominent issues that affect these platforms. Despite the increased privacy, security, scalability, and energy-saving capabilities of new consensus protocols in newer systems, the development and management of blockchains, mostly, do not reflect the decentralisation principle despite blockchains being decentralised and distributed in their architecture. The concept of treasury has been identified as a tool to address this problem. We explore the idea of blockchain treasury systems within literature and practice, especially with relation to funding and decision-making power towards blockchain development and maintenance. Consequently, we propose a taxonomy for treasury models within cryptocurrencies. Thereafter, we propose an efficient community-controlled and decentralised collaborative decision-making mechanism to support the development and management of blockchains. Our proposed system incentivises participants and is proven secure under the universally composable (UC) framework while also addressing gaps identified from our investigation of prior systems e.g. non-private ballots and insecure voting. Furthermore, we adapt our system and propose a privacy-preserving general decision making system for blockchain governance that supports privacy-centric cryptocurrencies. Besides, using a set of metrics, we introduce a consensus analysis mechanism to enhance the utility of decision-making of the systems by evaluating individual choices against collective (system-wide) decisions. Finally, we provide pilot system implementations with benchmark results confirming the efficiency and practicality of our constructions.