10 February 2023


Speaker: Professor Lin William CONG, Associate Professor of Finance at the Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University SC Johnson College of Business
Abstract:Blockchains, DeFi, and Web3, innovations for greater financial inclusion and democratization, currently fall short of the advocated benefits and present new risks and challenges. For example, while cryptocurrencies and digital assets hold promise for offering cheap, quick, and secure transfer of value, they also create payment channels for cybercrimes. The lack of disclosure and regulation also lead to vertical integration of centralized intermediaries that manipulate the market and commit frauds, as seen in the collapse of FTX. I discuss several projects assembling diverse sets of public, proprietary, and hand-collected data, and using large-scale computation and big data, both on-chain and off-chain, to investigate issues including wash trading, tax manipulation, ransomware, scams, mining concentration, network wealth inequality, and financial exclusion. Whereas blanket restrictions may prove ineffective and hinder innovations, blockchain forensics, statistical and behavioral principles, and appropriate tokenomics policies potentially enable the tracking, monitoring, and penalizing cybercriminals, market manipulators, and facilitate digital inclusion.

26 October 2022


Speaker: Professor Kwok-Yan LAM, School of Computer Science and Engineering at Nanyang Technological University
Abstract: The rapid adoption of digitalization in almost all aspects of economic activities has led to serious concerns in security, privacy, transparency, and fairness issues of digitalized systems. These issues will result in negative impacts on people’s trust in digitalization, which need to be addressed in order for organizations to reap the benefits of digitalization. The typical value proposition of digitalization such as elevated operational efficiency through automation and enhanced customer services through customer analytics require the collection, storage, and processing of massive amounts of user data, which are a typical cause for data governance issues and concerns on cybersecurity, privacy, and data misuses. AI-enabled processing and decision-making also lead to concerns about algorithm bias and distrust in digitalization. In this talk, we will briefly review the motivation for digitalization, discuss the trust issues in digitalization, and introduce the emerging areas of Trust Technology which is a key enabler in developing and growing the digital economy.