Domain: Finance.

Problem identification: Double spending problem in digital currencies.

Why Blockchain: 

To avoid the necessity of trusting a centralized banking system.

Functional Description

A decentralized digital currency whose transactions are written in a blockchain and verified by agents called “miners” solving computationally intense puzzles to ensure the immutability of the ledger.

Consensus mechanism used

  • Proof of Work (PoW)

Current status

  • The most popular kind of digital currency, with a market cap well above $100 billion.

Focus point commentary indicating the value of the case study in relation with learning modules

Learning Modules Focus Points

Consensus Presents a use case of the PoW consensus mechanism


  • High mining costs.
  • Rising concentration of mining power.

Alternative Approaches:

  • There’s no comparable alternative.


  1. Brunnermeier, M. K., James, H., & Landau, J. P. (2019). The digitalization of money (No. w26300). National Bureau of Economic Research.
  2. Halaburda, H., & Sarvary, M. (2016). Beyond bitcoin. The Economics of Digital Currencies.
  3. -Nakamoto, S. (2008). Bitcoin: A peer-to-peer electronic cash system.(2008).