Three American universities are set to conduct wide-ranging research on cryptocurrencies using roughly $3m in grant funding from the National Science Foundation, a US government agency that supports and funds scientific research.
Cornell, the University of Maryland and the University of California Berkeley will focus on developing new cryptocurrency systems that, according to principal investigator Elaine Shi, will address “pain points” attributed to bitcoin and other existing networks.
The Initiative for Cryptocurrency and Contracts (IC3) will also involve Cornell researcher Emin Gun Sirer; Dawn Song from UC Berkeley; and Jonathan Katz, David van Horn and Michael Hicks from the University of Maryland. The funding itself will be used to support the researchers involved with the project.
According to Shi, the growing ecosystem of startups focusing on digital currency research and rising interest among a broad range of parties necessitates “a rigorous science for cryptocurrencies”.
She told CoinDesk:
“We believe that our research can help establish cryptocurrency as a prominent research area, and make a big impact in shaping the future of financial transactions and e-commerce.”
According to National Science Foundation acting deputy division director Nina Amla, funding for the initiative comes from