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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Understanding the Spatial, Platial, and Temporal Properties of Cryptocurrency Ecosystems


Cryptocurrencies and their underlying technologies such as blockchains and smart contracts are rapidly gaining traction in sectors such as banking, identity management, supply chain management, cloud-computing, voting, forecasting, and so forth. With this change in visibility and first signs of mainstream adoption, there is a growing interest in understanding the cryptocurrency ecosystem, e.g., regarding market trends or inherent risks. Interestingly, however, spatial and platial aspects have not yet received much attention. One possible reason for this lack of analysis may be due to the perception of cryptocurrencies being global and living outside of legal frameworks. We will show that this is a misconception and that understanding the cryptocurrency ecosystem requires looking at the spaces and places involved in their creation, consumption, and regulation.

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