Full course description
- General Objectives. The objectives of this course are to equip the student with an understanding of digital assets that use some or all aspects of blockchain technology. Students will use the foundational knowledge gained in the two earlier courses to analyze and assess various categories of digital assets that use blockchain technology. Students will also be equipped to make up their own minds and cultivate their own perspectives regarding digital assets.
B. Specific Objectives. In particular, this course will give students both theoretical and experiential understandings with respect to the following:
- The various categories of digital assets that use blockchain technology, including cryptocurrencies, stable coins CBDCs and NFTs.
- Varieties of tokens--payment tokens, access tokens, utility tokens, security tokens, commodity tokens.
- Use cases.
- Regulatory and policy approaches.
- Design and technology.
- How digital assets that use blockchain technology have direct relevance to infrastructure design, construction, operations and protection against vulnerabilities.
A. Students will return to their departments and understand the degree to which digital assets that use blockchain technology:
1. Integrate into smart contracts and other blockchain-oriented solutions that will achieve of the department’s mission.
2. Can bring value to a program or project in the form of NFTs customized to the department’s mission and identity.
3. Can prevent against attacks and threat vectors by sinister actors.
B. Students will have an understanding of inputs to policy and regulation regarding digital assets that use blockchain technology from the perspectives of:
C. Students will be able to bring thought leadership and policy recommendations to regulators of infrastructure with respect to future regulations and policy regarding digital assets.
D. Students will develop their own informed opinion as to whether United States infrastructure should hasten or resist the adoption of digital assets that use blockchain technology.
Module 1: Basic Concepts and Payment Coins.
A. Module Description. This module enumerates and describes fundamental concepts of digital assets that use blockchain technology in order to orient the student and equip the student to assess various categories of digital assets. The module also examines payment coins, which is the first of several categories of digital assets that will be examined in BLK 103
B. Outcomes. Students will be able to describe the uses, properties, qualities and features of digital assets that uses blockchain technology. Students will also have an understanding of the payment coins that use blockchain technology, including various examples that have been live projects for a number of years.
Module 2: Access, Security, Utility, Commodity, Governance.
A. Module Description. This module gives students an understanding as to how access tokens, security tokens, utility tokens, commodity tokens and governance tokens function. Students will become acquainted with examples of each. Students will also become acquainted with the approach undertaken by regulatory authorities with respect to each category.
C. Students will be able to describe each category with confidence.
D. Students will be able to analyze and assess future instances of such tokens.
E. Students will also have an understanding as to how each of these categories might have direct relevance to infrastructure:
1. Access tokens to vest the holder with the right to enter components of an infrastructure.
2. Utility tokens to vest the holder with the right to use components of an infrastructure.
3. Security tokens to vest the holder with ownership rights in components of an infrastructure.
4. Commodity tokens to represent ownership in agricultural or mining products.
5. Governance tokens to vest the holder with the right to have a voice in the future direction of components of an infrastructure.
Module 3: NFTs and Stable Coins.
A. Module Description. This module walks a student through the origin, history, uses and technology design of NFTs (nonfungible tokens). The module then exposes the student to the history, uses and subcategories of stable coins. Students will examine specific stable coins that are in circulation.
B. Outcomes. Students will understand how their respective departments can use NFTs immediately. Students are expected to make recommendations to their department heads to implement NFTs in Q1 2021 in meaningful ways that add measurable value to the fulfillment of their department’s mission, programs and projects. Students will also have a clear understanding as to how people, companies and governments in other countries will have a preference to receive payment in the form of stable coins for work performed on infrastructure projects.
Module 4: Privacy, CBDCs, Private, Charity.
A. Module Description. This module acquaints the student with different varieties of privacy coins and privacy protocols. The module then describes the properties, uses, weaponization and implementation of CBDCs (Central Bank Digital Currencies).
B. Outcomes. Students will have a confidence in their understanding of privacy coins, privacy protocols and CBDCs. Students will be able to understand the degree to which privacy coins constitute a possible threat to infrastructure. The student will not only understand some possible impacts that CBDCs will have on the existing global and national infrastructure, but also be able to make her or his own assessments and predictions.
Module 5: Bitcoin.
A. Module Description. This module examines bitcoin as its own category of digital asset. Students will understand how bitcoin can inspire future blockchain innovations for infrastructure.
B. Outcomes. Students will be able to assess and determine whether and to what extent bitcoin:
1. is positioned to disrupt various layers of financial infrastructure,
2. can be applied to improve infrastructure, and
3. might actually constitute a new reserve currency.