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Taxonomy of centralization in public blockchain systems: asystematic literature review

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dc.contributor.author Sai, Ashish Rajendra
dc.contributor.author Buckley, Jim
dc.contributor.author Fitzgerald, Brian
dc.contributor.author Le Gear, Andrew
dc.date.accessioned 2021-07-07T09:11:39Z
dc.date.available 2021-07-07T09:11:39Z
dc.date.issued 2021
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10344/10316
dc.description peer-reviewed en_US
dc.description.abstract Bitcoin introduced delegation of control over a monetary system from a select few to all who participate in that system. This delegation is known as the decentralization of controlling power and is a powerful security mechanism for the ecosystem. After the introduction of Bitcoin, the field of cryptocurrency has seen widespread attention from industry and academia, so much so that the original novel contribution of Bitcoin, i.e., decentralization, may be overlooked, due to decentralizations’ assumed fundamental existence for the functioning of such crypto-assets. However, recent studies have observed a trend of increased centralization in cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum. As this increased centralization has an impact the security of the blockchain, it is crucial that it is measured, towards adequate control. This research derives an initial taxonomy of centralization present in decentralized blockchains through rigorous synthesis using a systematic literature review. This is followed by iterative refinement through expert interviews. We systematically analyzed 89 research papers published between 2009 and 2019. Our study contributes to the existing body of knowledge by highlighting the multiple definitions and measurements of centralization in the literature. We identify different aspects of centralization and propose an encompassing taxonomy of centralization concerns. This taxonomy is based on empirically observable and measurable characteristics. It consists of 13 aspects of centralization, classified over six architectural layers: Governance, Network, Consensus, Incentive, Operational, and Application. We also discuss how the implications of centralization can vary depending on the aspects studied. We believe that this review and taxonomy provides a comprehensive overview of centralization in decentralized blockchains involving various conceptualizations and measures en_US
dc.language.iso eng en_US
dc.publisher Elsevier en_US
dc.relation.ispartofseries Information Processing and Management;58, 102584
dc.subject Decentralized blockchain en_US
dc.subject Centralization en_US
dc.subject Classification en_US
dc.title Taxonomy of centralization in public blockchain systems: asystematic literature review en_US
dc.type info:eu-repo/semantics/article en_US
dc.type.supercollection all_ul_research en_US
dc.type.supercollection ul_published_reviewed en_US
dc.contributor.sponsor SFI en_US
dc.contributor.sponsor European Union (EU) en_US
dc.relation.projectid 13/RC/2094 en_US
dc.rights.accessrights info:eu-repo/semantics/openAccess en_US


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