Understanding Smart Contracts: Hype or Hope?

77 Pages Posted: 22 Mar 2021

See all articles by Elizaveta Zinovyeva

Elizaveta Zinovyeva

Humboldt University of Berlin

Raphael C. G. Reule

International Research Training Group 1792

Wolfgang K. Härdle

Blockchain Research Center; Xiamen University - Wang Yanan Institute for Studies in Economics (WISE); Charles University; National Yang Ming Chiao Tung University; Humboldt University of Berlin - Center for Applied Statistics and Economics (CASE)

Date Written: March 15, 2021

Abstract

Smart Contracts are commonly considered to be an important component or even a key to many business solutions in an immense variety of sectors and promises to securely increase their individual efficiency in an ever more digitized environment. Introduced in the early 1990's, the technology has gained a lot of attention with its application to blockchain technology to an extent, that can be considered a veritable hype. Reflecting the growing institutional interest, this intertwined exploratory study between statistics, information technology, and law contrasts these idealistic stories with the data reality and provides a mandatory step of understanding the matter, before any further relevant applications are discussed as being ``factually" able to replace traditional constructions. Besides fundamental flaws and application difficulties of currently employed Smart Contracts, the technological drive and enthusiasm backing it may however serve as a jump-off board for future developments thrusting well in the presently unshakeable traditional structures.

Keywords: Cryptocurrency, Smart Contract, Ethereum, CRIX.

JEL Classification: G02, G11, G12, G14, G15, G23

Suggested Citation

Zinovyeva, Elizaveta and Reule, Raphael C. G. and Härdle, Wolfgang K., Understanding Smart Contracts: Hype or Hope? (March 15, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3804861 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3804861

Elizaveta Zinovyeva

Humboldt University of Berlin ( email )

Unter den Linden 6
Berlin, AK Berlin 10099
Germany

Raphael C. G. Reule (Contact Author)

International Research Training Group 1792 ( email )

Unter den Linden 6
Berlin, AK Berlin 10099
Germany
+49 30 2093 99469 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://irtg1792.hu-berlin.de

Wolfgang K. Härdle

Blockchain Research Center ( email )

Unter den Linden 6
Berlin, D-10099
Germany

Xiamen University - Wang Yanan Institute for Studies in Economics (WISE) ( email )

A 307, Economics Building
Xiamen, Fujian 10246
China

Charles University ( email )

Celetná 13
Dept Math Physics
Praha 1, 116 36
Czech Republic

National Yang Ming Chiao Tung University ( email )

No. 1001, Daxue Rd. East Dist.
Hsinchu City 300093
Taiwan

Humboldt University of Berlin - Center for Applied Statistics and Economics (CASE)

Unter den Linden 6
Berlin, D-10099
Germany

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