This Week in Blockchain Research Issue #116

Issue #116


Issue #116

Paper of the Week:

Paper Title: Stochastic Modelling of BlockchainConsensus.


  1. Blockchain and general purpose distributed ledgers are foundational technologies which bring significant innovation in the infrastructures and other underpinnings of our socio-economic systems.

  2. These P2P technologies are able to securely diffuse information within and across networks, without need for trustees or central authorities to enforce consensus.

  3. This contribution proposes a minimalistic stochastic model to understand the dynamics of blockchain-based consensus.

  4. By leveraging on random-walk theory, it models block propagation delay on different network topologies and provides a classification of blockchain systems in terms of two emergent properties.

  5. Firstly, it identifies two performing regimes: a functional regime corresponding to an optimal system function; and a non-functional regime characterised by a congested or branched state of sub-optimal blockchains.

  6. Secondly, it discovers a phase transition during the emergence of consensus and numerically investigate the corresponding critical point.

  7. The results provide important insights into the consensus mechanism and sub-optimal states in decentralised systems.

AuthorsClaudio J. Tessone*, Paolo Tasca†, and Flavio Iannelli*,

Affiliations: * University of Zurich and † University College London.


1. Paper Title: TokenHook: Secure ERC-20 smart contract.

Summary: An ERC-20 designed to be secure against known vulnerabilities, and can serve as a second reference implementation to provide software diversity.

Authors: Reza Rahimian* and Jeremy Clark*

Affiliations* Concordia University.

2. Paper Title: A First Look into the Structural Properties and Resilience of Blockchain Overlays.

Summary: The most important overlay structural properties and the resilience to targeted attacks of seven distinct blockchain networks.

Authors: Aristodemos Paphitis*, Nicolas Kourtellis†, and Michael Sirivianos*,

Affiliations* Cyprus University of Technology and † Telefonica Research.


No papers.


No papers.


No papers.


1. Paper Title: SoK: Understanding BFT Consensus in the Age of Blockchains.

Summary: This paper conducts a systematic and comprehensive study on BFT consensus protocols with a specific focus on the blockchain era.

Authors: Gang Wang*

Affiliations* University of Connecticut.

2. Paper Title: Stochastic Performance Modeling for Practical Byzantine Fault Tolerance Consensus in Blockchain.

Summary: This paper describes a simple stochastic performance model of the PBFT consensus mechanism, which is refined as not only a queueing system with complicated service times but also a level-independent quasi-birth-and-death (QBD) process.

Authors: Fan-Qi Ma*, Quan-Lin Li†, Yi-Han Liu†, and Yan-Xia Chang†,

Affiliations* Yanshan University and † Beijing University of Technology.


1. Paper Title: High-Frequency Connectedness between Bitcoin and Other Top-Traded Crypto Assets during the COVID-19 Crisis.

Summary: This work applies the Diagonal-BEKK model to data from the pre-COVID and COVID-19 periods, and identifies significant changes in patterns of co-movements and correlations during the pandemic period.

AuthorsParaskevi Katsiampa*, Larisa Yarovaya†, and Damian Zięba‡,

Affiliations: * University of Sheffield, † University of Southampton, and ‡ University of Warsaw.

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