Cryptoeconomics, Tokenomics, and the Economics of Blockchain (Mini-Course)

Center for Cyber-Physical Systems and the Internet of Things
USC Viterbi School of Engineering

November 5, 7 & 8, 2018
Course Outline
Note: This course is designed for CS and Engineering Students and Professionals and requires focuses on mathematical principles of economic theory. It is designed purely for a technical audience.

This three-session course provides an introduction to applicable economics for engineers and computer scientists working or interested in the blockchain and distributed ledger space. This course assumes a working knowledge of blockchain technology, but not a previous knowledge of economics. By the end of the course, attendees will be able to identify the major economic challenges facing blockchain projects and current solutions.

Course Instructors

Dr. Cathy Barrera

Dr. Cathy Barrera is a Founding Economist of Prysm Group, a firm that specializes in economic and governance design for blockchain companies, institutions, and governments. She is the lead contributor to the MIT Cryptoeconomics Lab and the Cryptoeconomics Industry Expert for the recently-launched MIT Sloan Executive Education “Blockchain Technologies: Business Innovation and Application” course. She has been featured on CNBC, CNN, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post among others. Dr. Barrera is former tenure-track faculty of Economics at Cornell University Johnson Graduate School of Management and Chief Economist at ZipRecruiter. She holds an MSc in Applied Math from the London School of Economics and a PhD in Business Economics from Harvard University.

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Dr. Stephanie Hurder

Dr. Stephanie Hurder is a Harvard-educated economist specializing in human capital, market design, and the future of work. She is a Founding Economist at Prysm Group, a firm that specializes in economic and governance design for blockchain companies, institutions, and governments. Prior to founding Prysm Group, Dr. Hurder was at the Boston Consulting Group, where she worked with Fortune 50 corporations and global NGOs. She was recognized as a firm-wide expert on organizational effectiveness and design and co-authored multiple publications on these topics. Stephanie has held research positions at MIT, Microsoft Research, and Merrill Lynch, and has led seminars to faculty at a half dozen top research universities across the United States. She holds an AB in Mathematics, an AM in Economics, and a PhD in Business Economics from Harvard University.

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Course Host

Dr. Bhaskar Krishnamachari

Dr. Krishnamachari is a Professor and Ming Hsieh Faculty Fellow in Electrical Engineering at the Viterbi School of Engineering, University of Southern California. He is the Director of the Autonomous Networks Research Group, and Co-Director of the Ming Hsieh Institute. He is the Director of USC Viterbi Center for Cyber-Physical Systems and Internet of Things and involved with Blockchain research and teaching at USC. Dr. Krishnamachari received his B.E. in Electrical Engineering from The Cooper Union and his M.S. and Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Cornell University.

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Course Syllabus

Session 1: Introduction to Blockchain, Platform Design, and Incentives

a. Introduction to Microeconomic Incentives

b. Contract Theory

c. Market Design

Session 2: Platform Design and Incentives II

a. Reputation Systems

b. Governance / Social Choice Theory

Session 3: Token Design and Ecosystem Issues

a. Token Economics

b. Ecosystem Economics

c. Implications for Business

Course Location

USC Viterbi School of Engineering
3740 McClintock Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90089

Course Registration

Eventbrite Registration

Printable Course Flyer (PDF)

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Cryptoeconomics, Tokenomics, and the Economics of Blockchain (Mini-Course)