The Initiative for Cryptocurrencies and Contracts (IC3) Awarded a Chainlink Research Grant

The Chainlink Community Grant Program provides financial resources to the many development teams and researchers building a more functional and accessible Chainlink Network. We encourage talented individual developers and development teams to apply to the grant program here, or if you are a researcher and want to collaborate, contact us.

We are excited to announce that the Initiative for Cryptocurrencies and Contracts (IC3), a leading academic research organization, has been selected as a research grant recipient from the Chainlink Community Grant Program. IC3 is receiving a grant to conduct additional research and generate new data-driven insights into how to further improve both oracle networks like Chainlink and the underlying blockchain, smart contract, and data infrastructure in which Chainlink supports.

With smart contracts serving as the foundation for a superior form of digital agreement, and IC3 at the intersection of multiple key areas of research required to help them reach mainstream adoption, awarding IC3 a Chainlink Research Grant will further drive the adoption of oracle-enabled smart contracts and blockchain technology as a whole. Supporting some of the world’s best researchers, cryptographers, and industry experts aligns with Chainlink’s own research driven development and the ethos of furthering trust-minimization within global economies and social processes using externally connected smart contracts.

IC3 is a collaborative research initiative for smart contract technology based at the Jacobs Technion-Cornell Institute, consisting of faculty members from prestigious universities such as Carnegie Mellon University, Cornell University, Cornell Tech, EPFL, ETH Zurich, UC Berkeley, University College London, and the Technion. The research grant awarded to IC3 will go towards producing original academic research that:

  • Enhances oracle technology, both through technological improvements in privacy, scalability, and security, as well as through data-driven insights from on-chain activity and economic observations.
  • Improves the security, reliability, and scalability of underlying blockchain networks and core infrastructure, creating a stronger base for which to support a wide variety of smart contract applications.
  • Leads to new constructions in privacy, user authentication, and the security of smart contract applications, making them applicable for mainstream usage in core business and social processes.

As a research focused organization, IC3 is pushing the boundaries of blockchain, smart contract, and oracle technology by producing original research papers on key topics such as privacy preserving oracle protocols, miner extractable value, decentralized exchange front running, central bank digital currencies, zero knowledge proof authentication, decentralized identity solutions, and more. Chainlink Labs has worked alongside the Initiative for Cryptocurrencies and Contracts for numerous years and this grant will further increase the resources available to them. By supporting research organizations such as IC3, the blockchain ecosystem as a whole benefits through new original academic insights into key problems and improvements encountered by and to the benefit of many disparate projects.

Co-directors of IC3 include leading industry experts such as Ari Juels, Professor at the Jacobs Technion-Cornell Institute at Cornell Tech, previous chief scientist at RSA, and current Chief Scientist of Chainlink Labs, as well as Emin Gün Sirer, Associate Professor of Computer Science at Cornell University and founder of the Avalanche protocol. IC3 is also led by three Associate Directors: Andrew Miller (UIUC), Ittay Eyal (Technion), and Sarah Meiklejohn (UCL). In collaboration with the Chainlink Research Team, IC3, and its team of academics, we are bringing the greatest minds in the world together to collaborate in the development of superior smart contracts and oracles, including mechanism design and approaches to confidentiality.

“We are excited to receive a research grant from the Chainlink Grant program, allowing us to produce original academic research that can help further improve the great oracle infrastructure that is already being made available by Chainlink” stated Jim Ballingall, IC3 Executive Director. “Through funding from the Chainlink Grant Program, we will continue generating unique academic-research that will improve smart contract security, provide various new approaches to blockchain security and efficiency, as well as help create even more original research on the topic of oracles and their application to various smart contracts.”

“Chainlink is thrilled to continue to support the research of IC3 faculty and students – work that both advances the research behind smart contracts and continually feeds practical innovations into various industry implementations.” stated Sergey Nazarov, Co-Founder of Chainlink. “Their leadership and impact is unparalleled in enhancing privacy, security and ease-of-use for smart contract users, which serves as critical cross-discipline research and insight that ultimately lays the foundation for smart contracts to support mass adoption.”

Through the Chainlink Community Grants program, we look forward to continuing to empower more and more Chainlink ecosystem teams and researchers who are both researching and building key tools and infrastructure that accelerate the development of universally connected smart contracts and secure oracle networks. We will continue supporting the community as a key driver of Chainlink’s rapid growth, because only together can we make universally connected smart contracts into the dominant form of digital agreement.

If you want to learn more about the Grant Program, check out our recent blog post that further expands upon its goals and the criteria for submission. If you would like to participate in the Chainlink Grant Program, please apply here. Chainlink Community Grants are provided in Cash and/or LINK.

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