University of Texas at Austin
Visual depiction of blockchain technology connecting the world.

Blockchain Initiative

McCombs School of Business McCombs School of Business

The Business of Blockchain and Cryptocurrency

The Business of Blockchain and Cryptocurrency

Distributed ledgers (i.e. blockchain technology) can be described as a new method of recording and storing information. A ledger is a place where events such as payments, land sale deeds, marriages and births, or any other transactions are recorded. Usually, a single central authority like a government or bank decides what goes on the ledger. Distributed ledgers rely on a network of nodes to come to a consensus on whether events can be added to the ledger. This is a disruptive concept, because it allows parties who don't trust each other to transact and collaborate, creating a trust-less system of data and value transfer between users without the need of a central authority. Blockchain technology is used in many applications today, from digital currencies, smart contract platforms, or data storage, supply chain, healthcare, digital identity, and many other applications.

The Blockchain Initiative at Texas McCombs has three main goals: (i) to support faculty and graduate students research on blockchain across colleges at the University of Texas at Austin; (ii) to teach students the main concepts related to blockchain, cryptocurrency, and digital payments; (iii) to be the hub of knowledge for external relations with industry practitioners, policymakers, and media.

Limited fellowships are available to graduate students to support their blockchain research. Interested students should submit a letter, together with a recommendation letter from a UT sponsoring faculty, to the blockchain initiative email address below.

Faculty Advisory Board

Meet the faculty on the board of the Blockchain Initiative at Texas McCombs. 

Cesare Fracassi

Cesare Fracassi

Director of the Blockchain Initiative

Associate Professor of Finance

cesare.fracassi@mccombs.utexas.edu

John Griffin

John Griffin

James A. Elkins Centennial Chair Professor of Finance

john.griffin@mccombs.utexas.edu

Image of Laura Starks

Laura Starks

Charles E. & Sarah M. Seay Regents’ Chair in Finance

laura.starks@mccombs.utexas.edu

Prabhudev Konana headshot

Prabhudev Konana

Thomas O. Hicks Chair Professor in Business

prabhudev.konana@mccombs.utexas.edu

Doug Morrice

Doug Morrice

Bobbie and Coulter R. Sublett Centennial Professor in Business

douglas.morrice@mccombs.utexas.edu