The blockchain future might arrive sooner than you think, if the proliferation of courses related to cryptocurrencies and blockchain is any indication.
According to research conducted by Coinbase and Qriously, a London-based ad-tech firm, 42 of the world’s top 50 universities have already jumped onto the cryptocurrency and blockchain bandwagon by offering, at least, one class on the subjects. 22 percent of such universities offer courses in more than one subject. “Expanding the results to include longstanding foundational classes on cryptography, 70 percent of universities offer, at least, one crypto-related class,” the publication writes.
That’s not bad performance for a technology introduced to the world less than a decade ago and has been mired in numerous controversies during its time in the spotlight. With 28 courses related to subjects (including previous courses on cryptography), Cornell University is the leader in blockchain education. Other prominent universities, such as Stanford and MIT, have dedicated research teams on the subject. For example, Stanford has the Center for Blockchain Research and MIT, where much of the early research pertaining to cryptography and bitcoin was carried out, has the Digital Currency Initiative.
The interdisciplinary nature of cryptocurrencies and blockchain has attracted students from all majors. In fact, Coinbase states that more social science majors are interested in crypto and blockchain as compared to computer science and engineering subjects. Part of the reason for this development may be the dim job prospects for recent graduates in this fields. The novelty of blockchain and cryptocurrencies and their gradual integration into mainstream society means that they are fields ripe with the potential for jobs.
The influx of students with fresh perspectives has been beneficial for the ecosystem. Dan Boneh, computer science and electrical engineering professor at Stanford University, told Coinbase that he gets new research ideas from interaction with the students. “There are new technical questions being raised by blockchain projects that we would not work on otherwise,” he said.