SigmaPhi 2017 Workshop on Statistical Physics for the Digital Economy

Holiday Palace Hotel, Corfu, Greece

11-12 July, 2017

All participants, including invited speakers, need to register. Once registered, please let us know by sending an email to or .

This workshop aims at bringing together a pool of experts in the interdisciplinary Statistical Physics community to outline, explore, discuss and address the challenges posed by the growth of the digital economy, and to identify the research channels where Statistical Physics could play a key role in delivering relevant quantitative findings.

The last few years have seen the emergence of novel and entirely digital forms of economic exchange. Indeed, we have witnessed the emergence of sharing economy marketplaces where individuals can share goods and resources in real time, peer-to-peer financial services, as well as the creation of a purely digital currency such as Bitcoin [1-7].

The common trait of such disruptive innovations is that they all rely on decentralized distributed networks of users who voluntarily participate. In this respect, these cannot be regarded as anything other than large interacting systems, where individual choices scale to collective consequences. This is precisely the realm of application of Statistical Physics, where the laws describing macroscopic behavior acquire a statistical nature, which loses its dependence on the details of the local interactions as the system size increases. Over the last few years, the methods of Statistical Physics have had tremendous success in describing phenomena lying outside the conventional realm of Physics. Up to now, some of the most fruitful applications have focused precisely on network phenomena, ranging from the spread of epidemics to subjects that had been exclusively investigated in Economics and in the Social Sciences, such as stock markets or social networks.

[1] S. Nakamoto, Bitcoin: A peer-to-peer electronic cash system (, 2008).
[2] Tasca, Paolo, et al. "Banking Beyond Banks and Money. A Guide to Banking Services in the Twenty-First Century", Springer 2016 (
[3] F. Caccioli, G. Livan, and T. Aste, "Scalability and Egalitarianism in Peer-to-Peer Networks", Banking Beyond Banks and Money, Springer International Publishing, 2016. 197-212.
[4] Tomaso Aste "The fair cost of bitcoin proof of work", SSRN 2801048, 2016.
[5] G. Livan, F. Caccioli, and T. Aste, “Reciprocity-induced bias in digital reputation", arXiv preprint arXiv:1606.02597 (2016).
[6] T. Aste, Paolo Tasca and T. Di Matteo, "Blockchain Technologies: foreseeable impact on industry and society", IEEE computer, to appear, 2017.
[7] G. Pappalardo, T. Di Matteo, G. Caldarelli, and T. Aste, "Blockchain inefficiency in the bitcoin peers network", arXiv preprint arXiv:1704.01414, 2017.

The list of invited speakers includes:

• Fabio Caccioli (UCL)
• Andrea Gabrielli (CNR Rome)
• Henrik Jensen (Imperial College London)
• Imre Kondor (Parmenides Foundation)
• Rosario Mantegna (Università di Palermo)
• Richard Olsen (Lykke)
• Giovanni Petri (ISI Foundation Turin)
• Sebastian Poledna (Complexity Science Hub Vienna)
• Tiziano Squartini (IMT Lucca)
• Hideki Takayasu (Sony Laboratories)
• Misako Takayasu (Tokyo Institute of Technology)
• Paolo Tasca (UCL)
• Stefan Thurner (Medical University of Vienna)

Invited speakers and participants to the workshop include investigators of the newly EPSRC approved project BARAC (Blockchain Technology for Algorithmic Regulation and Compliance).

Link to BARAC Project


• Tomaso Aste (Department of Computer Science, UCL)
• Guido Caldarelli (IMT Lucca)
• Tiziana Di Matteo (Department of Mathematics, KCL)
• Giacomo Livan (Department of Computer Science, UCL)

For further information please contact,


BARAC Project