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Multi-year Cambridge Digital Assets Programme launched with 16 institutional research collaborators to create open-access datasets and tools to inform digital public dialogue and decision-making in such areas as the environment, infrastructure and cryptocurrencies.

The growing adoption of digital assets increasingly blurs the lines between roles, responsibilities and applicable rules, stretching the boundaries of long-term institutional arrangements

Bryan Zhang

The Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance (CCAF) at Cambridge Judge Business School has announced the launch of the Cambridge Digital Assets Programme (CDAP), a research initiative in collaboration with 16 leading banks, public sector agencies and private organisations to study the rapid digitisation of assets and value transfer systems.

Over an initial period of two years, the CCAF will work with public and private organisations to create the data, tools, and insights necessary to facilitate an evidence-based public dialogue about the opportunities and risks presented by the growing digital asset ecosystem.

The CDAP’s institutional research collaborators are: Accenture, Bank for International Settlements (BIS) Innovation Hub, British International Investment (BII), Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), EY, Fidelity, UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO), Goldman Sachs, Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), International Monetary Fund (IMF), Invesco, London Stock Exchange Group (LSEG), Mastercard, MSCI, Visa, and the World Bank. 

The programme builds on the CCAF’s work in creating digital tools such as the Cambridge Bitcoin Electricity Consumption Index (CBECI) and the Global Cryptoasset Benchmarking Study series. It is designed to address the broader ecosystem trends and issues through research that can help guide public opinion, inform regulation and policy discussion, as well as support evidence-based decision making by individuals and institutions.

Supporters of the programme include prominent public and private stakeholders from a variety of sectors to promote diversity in views and facilitate exchange of insight. These supporters will also provide input and guidance to ensure practical and meaningful research output.

“The growing adoption of digital assets increasingly blurs the lines between roles, responsibilities and applicable rules, stretching the boundaries of long-term institutional arrangements,” said Bryan Zhang, Executive Director, CCAF. “The Cambridge Digital Assets Programme aims to meet the resulting need for greater clarity by providing data-driven insights through collaborative research involving public and private sector stakeholders.”

The programme's research will be centred around three distinct but related areas. The first is the environmental implications and broader ESG (environmental, social and governance) considerations of digital assets and their associated services. The second area will look at the processes and configurations of Distributed Financial Market Infrastructure (dFMI), including the evolving constellation of networks, platforms, applications, and services. The third research stream will focus on emergent money systems – the “asset” side of the ecosystem – comprising crypto-assets, stable-coins, Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs), as well as enterprise and consumer tokens.

“We've spent a lot of time developing a consistent framework that consolidates our efforts in the digital assets space and ensuring that we have the right collaborations in place to deliver insight and clarity,” said Michel Rauchs, Digital Assets Lead, CCAF. “We believe this programme will provide decision-makers with the objective analysis and empirical evidence that they need to navigate the digital assets maze.”

Each research stream will convene a dedicated working group of CCAF researchers, domain experts, and representatives from supporting institutions of the programme. 

Originally published on the Cambridge Judge Business School website.

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