2021 IEEE SERVICES - IEEE International Symposium on Blockchain

Panel: Digital Twin and Digital Threading - Current Practice & Future Trends
Wednesday September 8, 16:30 - 17:50 pm UTC

A digital twin, being an exact digital replica of a given tangible physical asset or process, a digital twin is expected to play a vital role in Industry 4.0. Capturing and integrating the asset, production, and performance data into a corresponding digital twin is commonly referred to as digital threading.

Today’s methods for enabling digital twins are based on centralized architectures and do not natively provide trusted data provenance, audit, and traceability. In contrast, blockchain-based digital threading ensures secure and trusted traceability, accessibility, immutability of transactions, logs through data provenance, which is native to the blockchain protocols. In addition to the blockchain, several other technologies such as the Internet of Things, artificial intelligence, big and streaming data analytics are commonly used to enable seamless synchronization between digital twins and the processes they represent. The panel session will discuss ongoing innovations and further research efforts needed to resolve blockchain-based digital threading challenges associated with scalability, data privacy, interoperability, energy consumption, and integration with legacy systems.


Dr. Dragan Boscovic (Arizona State University) is a Research Professor of Computer Science and Engineering at ASU and is serving as the Director of ASU's Blockchain Research Lab and the co-Director of ASU's Center for Assured and Scalable Data Engineering (CASCADE). He is a seasoned ITC industry executive and senior technology expert with proven track record in conceiving strategies and managing development, investment and innovation efforts as related to advanced technologies, products and mobile services. Based on extensive international experience uniquely positioned to release latent potentials and extract value within a global operation. Lateral thinker with broad exposure to different information and communication technologies/systems and very comfortable with attacking complex and multifaceted problems. Currently leading a consortium of to jointly address new business opportunities as related to Smart Cities, Smart Energy/Grid and Smart Health applications and services.


Dr. Jan Veuger (Saxion University) is a Professor of Blockchain at the Saxion University of Applied Sciences, Schools of Finance & Accounting, Creative Technology and School of Governance, Law and Urban Development. He is also the President of the Academic Board at FIBREE, editor of the Real Estate Quarterly Research The Netherlands, member of four Super Advisory Boards and the Scientific Editorial Board at CIRRE. His research focuses on Blockchain and its impact on the new economy and society.

Dr. Khaled Salah (Kalifa University) is a full professor at the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, Khalifa University, UAE. He has over 190 publications and three US patents and is the Track Chair of IEEE Globecom 2018 on Cloud Computing. He is also an Associate Editor of IEEE Blockchain Tech Briefs, International Journal of “Blockchain in Healthcare”, and a member of the IEEE Blockchain Education Committee.

Dr. Mic Bowman (Intel) is a senior principal engineer in Intel Labs and leads the decentralized computing research group. Mic has spent over 20 years working on large-scale databases and distributed systems. Among other roles he served as a member of the Hyperledger Technical Steering Committee for several years contributing to various aspects of architecture definition and evaluation of technologies for privacy and confidentiality. He is currently working on methods for improving the security, scalability, and privacy of distributed ledgers.

Panel: Blockchain Interoperability
Wednesday September 8, 5:40 - 7:00 UTC

The distributed ledger technology has gone well past experimental phase and is radically transforming business models and processes in several domains like financial services, logistics, trade, and supply chain to name a few. The nature of the technology and the challenges of convening appropriate ecosystems has resulted in a plethora of technical stacks, protocols, and participation models. This spectre has raised concerns of creating islands of digital assets and information. Seamless interoperability among them is a critical need of the hour to avoid this major pitfall and realise the true potential of the technology. This panel discussion will focus on different approaches to interoperability, technical and transformation challenges, and the need for standardisation efforts. We have a panel of leading researchers and experts on the topic who will share their expertise and insights on this topic.


Vinayaka Pandit, is a Senior Member of Technical Staff at IBM Research. Heleads the Blockchain and Supply Chain Research strategies for IBM Research. His current work in blockchain and supply chain research brings advanced techniques from operations research, cryptography, security, machine learning, and blockchain together to enable privacy preserving collaboration on multi-enterprise business networks. Vinayaka started his career in IBM Research in 1999 as a research staff member with a focus on approximation algorithms and combinatorial optimization. His work during this time resulted in some of the classic results in facility location, local search heuristics, scheduling, and network designs. Vinayaka obtained his Ph.D. in Computer Science from Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi.


Bill Laboon is the Director of Education and Community at Web3 Foundation. Before this, he was a lecturer in the Computer Science Department of the University of Pittsburgh, teaching courses in software quality assurance, software engineering, and blockchain technology. He is a frequent speaker at conferences on a variety of topics, including cryptocurrency, software quality, and the ethics of software development. He is the author of two books: A Friendly Introduction to Software Testing, an undergraduate textbook; and Strength in Numbers, a near-future novel set in a world in which cryptocurrency has eliminated traditional money. Bill has a BS in Computer Science and Political Science from the University of Pittsburgh, as well as an MS in Software Design & Management from Carnegie Mellon University.

Hart Montgomery is a research scientist in cryptography at Fujitsu, where he has worked since 2015. Before Fujitsu, Hart completed his Ph.D. at Stanford in cryptography under Professor Dan Boneh. Hart's interests in cryptography are broad and include blockchain, lattices and post-quantum cryptography, and foundations of cryptography.

Rafael Belchoir is a researcher at INESC-ID and Ph.D. student at Técnico Lisboa, studying the intersection of blockchain interoperability and security. He participates in the Internet Engineering Task Force and Hyperledger Cactus, the most recent Hyperledger project dedicated to blockchain interoperability. One can refer to Rafael’s weg-page to learn more about his work: https://rafaelapb.github.io/

Vnekatraman Ramakrishna is a Senior Researcher in IBM Research-India (Bangalore) and an IBM Quantum Ambassador. Following a B. Tech. from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kharagpur and an MS and PhD (ubiquitous computing) from UCLA, he worked in the Bing Infrastructure team in Microsoft, building reliable service deployment software. At IBM Research, he worked in mobile computing and security before changing his research focus to blockchain in 2015. He has worked on enterprise blockchain solutions in trade finance and shared KYC using Hyperledger Fabric, and also on performance measurement and analysis of the same platform. In the past two years, he has been creating tools and protocols for interoperability between DLT platforms and networks. Ramakrishna has co-authored a book on Hyperledger Fabric development, presently in its second edition, titled "Blockchain with Hyperledger Fabric: Build decentralized applications using Hyperledger Fabric 2". He has presented research papers at several conferences and delivered invited lectures at universities, spanning two decades.

Invited Speeches

01:00 am - 01:40 am, Wednesday, September 8 (UTC)
Prof. Mengchu Zhou (New Jersey Institute of Technology)
Title: Enhancing Scalability of Trusted Blockchains through Optimal Sharding

01:40 am - 02:20 am, Wednesday, September 8 (UTC)
Dr. Tsuyoshi Ide (IBM Thomas J. Watson Research Center)
Title: Decentralized Collaborative Learning with Probabilistic Data Protection

04:10 am - 04:50 am, Wednesday, September 8 (UTC)
Prof. Song Guo (Hong Kong Polytechnic University)
Title: Toward Scaling Blockchain: Challenges and New Approaches

04:50 am - 05:30 am, Wednesday, September 8 (UTC)
Prof. Schahram Dustdar (TU Wien, Austria) Title: An Elasticity Framework for Smart Contracts

Blockchain Symposium Accepted Papers

BLK_SYM_24 Blockchain Based RAN Data Sharing
Andreas Heider-Aviet, Danny Roswin Ollik, Van Thanh Le, Nabil El Ioini, Claus Pahl, Hamid R. Barzegar, Silvio Ranise, Roberto Carbone and Stefano Berlato

BLK_SYM_25 AC2M: An Automated Consent Management Model for Blockchain Financial Services Platform
Zhiyu Xu, Tengyun Jiao, Ziyuan Wang, Sheng Wen and Shiping Chen

BLK_SYM_31 An Analysis of Transaction Handling in Bitcoin
Befekadu Gebraselase, Bjarne Emil Helvik and Yuming Jiang

BLK_SYM_32 Using Blockchain for Enhancing Collaboration among Independent Enterprises:A Knowledge-based Approach
Niranjan Marathe, Haan Johng, Tom Hill and Lawrence Chung

Call for Papers

Invited speakers and panelists of the Symposium can submit papers via EasyChair per the instructions provided below. Registration fee for the invited speakers/panelists is waived. A panelist can publish a position statement with no more than 3 pages without a fee. Registration fee for a paper with 4 or more pages can be waived by General Chair upon request.

The inaugural IEEE International Symposium on Blockchain at IEEE SERVICES 2021 provides a forum for leading scientists, researchers, community leaders and visionaries from both academia and industry to share their cutting-edge research findings, practical experiences, and particularly the visions of the future roadmap in the area of blockchain.

This forum is dedicated to submissions that promote visionary ideas and blue-sky thinking that will spark transdisciplinary discussions and cutting-edge insights in the major field of blockchain. We aim at exploring breakthrough and innovative ideas which the R&D community should look at when solidifying its key research agenda for the next 10 years, e.g.,

  • Smart data for Blockchains
  • Blockchain for smart data services
  • Blockchain-based solutions for smart data services
  • Blockchain for smart data management
  • Blockchain-assisted smart data platforms/architectures
  • Blockchain intelligence for data computing

CFP page of IEEE Smart Data Service (SMDS) 2021 includes submission details for a special research paper track on blockchain. A Special Paper Award in Blockchain will be provisioned for the special track. We encourage submitting papers outlining high-risk/high-reward ideas that may open research directions that are not yet well covered today by the blockchain community but are worth their special attention in terms of potential society impact.

The Symposium on Blockchain will feature distinguished speakers from industry and academia, research panels, technical presentations and much more; stay tuned for the agenda. It will be held as a cross-conference symposium at IEEE SERVICES 2021. We extend an invitation to all to participate and make it a success.


Please download the paper template in WORD, LaTeX or Overleaf.
Language: English
Paper size and format: US Letter; Two-column format in the IEEE style
Page limit: * Every full paper submission can include up to 10 pages for the main contents (including all text, footnotes, figures, tables and appendices) with additional pages for appropriate references.
* Up to three pages for panel position statement submission (including main contents and references).


Please submit your papers to the Symposium via EasyChair at https://easychair.org/conferences/?conf=ieeeservices2021


All submissions will be reviewed by the Program Committee. Accepted papers of the Symposium will be included in the Congress proceedings for IEEE SMDS 2021 and published in IEEE Xplore.


Paper submission due: 20 June 2021
Notification to authors: 5 July 2021
Camera-ready and registration due: 15 July 2021


Honorary General Chairs:
Peter Chen, Carnegie Mellon University
Andreas Kind, Siemens

General Chairs:
Sachiko Yoshihama, IBM Research-Tokyo
Zibin Zheng, Sun Yat-Sen University

Program Chairs:
Ting Chen, University of Electronic Science and Technology of China
Hong-Ning Dai, Macau University of Science & Technology
Vinayaka Pandit, IBM Research - India

Operations Committee:
Huawei Huang, Sun Yat-Sen University

Program Committee:
Xuran Li, Shandong Normal University
Yunlong Lu, Beijing Jiaotong University
Krishnasuri Narayanam, IBM Research
Yang Xu, Hunan University
Kentaroh Toyoda, A*STAR - Agency for Science, Technology and Research
Akshar Kaul, IBM Research
Zehui Xiong, Singapore University of Technology and Design
Jiawen Kang, Nanyang Technological University

Advisory Committee
Rong N. Chang, IBM TJ Watson Research Center
Song Guo, Hong Kong Polytechnic University
Yan Zhang, University of Oslo