Blockchain technology and formal methods
- ECTS credits15
- Teaching semesterAutumn
- Course codeINFO384
- Number of semesters1
Level of Study
Objectives and Content
The course aims at providing students with knowledge of the state-of-the-art blockchain technology. Moreover, students will learn how to use the tools and techniques of formal logic and theoretical computer science to analyse and reason about various blockchain aspects and properties. As a result of the course, students will have an in-depth understanding of formal methods for blockchain and be able to carry out research in the area.
As blockchain technology becomes more and more ubiquitous, there is a growing demand for rigorous and formal understanding of its key aspects. The course will provide an advanced overview of blockchain theory and models with detailed analyses of some of its implementations. A special focus will be set on various notions of consensus, like proof-of-work and proof-of-stake. Both the blockchain itself and consensus will be then formally analysed using the notions and techniques of theoretical computer science, e.g. Merkle trees and modal logic. We will also cover one of the most prominent applications of blockchains - smart contracts. The focus will be on Ethereum smart contracts, and their implementation in Solidity programming language. The course will also include a detailed overview of cryptographic methods used to ensure the safety on a blockchain.
The course material will include selected chapters from textbooks and research papers.
By the end of the course a participating student will have the following knowledge, skills, and general competence.
The student has rigorous and advanced understanding of blockchains and formal methods for them.
The student is able to discuss and present state-of-the-art research papers on formal aspects of blockchain that allows them to conduct a research project in the area. Moreover, the student has a firm grasp on smart contracts and is able to prototype them in Solidity programming language.
The student is able to read advanced research papers on formal methods for blockchain and verification of smart contracts.
Recommended Previous Knowledge
Any background in logic or formal methods would be useful.
Credit Reduction due to Course Overlap
Access to the Course
Master's programme in Information Science. Other master students are allowed to apply for admission.
Teaching and learning methods
Lectures and seminars.
Compulsory Assignments and Attendance
Attendance of 80% of course sessions is required. There will be compulsory assignments in the course.
Forms of Assessment
Written exam (70%)
Three graded assignments (30%)
Examination Support Material
Assessment in teaching semester
All courses are evaluated according to UiB's system for quality assurance of education.
The Department of Information Science and Media Studies at the Faculty of Social Sciences has the administrative responsibility for the course
Tlf 55 58 91 00 / 55 58 41 17