Blockchains and Transaction Costs

  • Anders Henten CMI, Department of Electronic Systems, Aalborg University, Copenhagen, Denmark
  • Iwona Windekilde CMI, Department of Electronic Systems, Aalborg University, Copenhagen, Denmark
Keywords: blockchain, transaction costs, financial sector, smart contracts, private key cryptography, distributed ledger technology, value-exchange protocol


This paper examines current business applications of blockchain technology and discusses blockchain implications for transaction costs. Blockchains are a relatively new set of technologies that can be used for various business purposes, primarily activities related to contracting. Transaction costs comprise the operational costs of contacting (searching and communicating) as well as the costs of contracting (writing and enforcing contracts), and blockchains can be used to lower, first and foremost, the costs of writing and enforcing contracts. Other technology applications that have been investigated to a larger extent, such as multi-sided platforms, primarily help in lowering the costs of searching and communicating, while blockchains can contribute to lowering the costs of contracting.


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Author Biographies

Anders Henten , CMI, Department of Electronic Systems, Aalborg University, Copenhagen, Denmark

Anders Henten is Professor at section for Communication, Media and Information technologies (CMI) – an interdisciplinary research and teaching section specializing in ICT services, digital media and cyber security at the Department of Electronic Systems at Aalborg University in Copenhagen. He is a graduate in communications and international development studies from Roskilde University in Denmark (1989) and holds a PhD in ICT from the Technical University of Denmark (1995). He has worked professionally in the area of communications economy and policy for more than 30 years.

Iwona Windekilde, CMI, Department of Electronic Systems, Aalborg University, Copenhagen, Denmark

Iwona Windekilde is Associate Professor at CMI (Center for Communication, Media and Information Technologies) at Aalborg University. She holds a Ph.D. Degree in Economics from Szczecin University, Poland. From the year 2002 to 2005, she worked as an Assistant Professor at Szczecin University in Poland, at the Department of Economics and Organization of Telecommunication. In 2005, she received Marie Curie Intra-European Fellowships within the Sixth Framework Programme. In 2006, she was employed at Center for Information and Communication Technologies, the Technical University of Denmark as a Post.doc researcher in the area of business models for personal electronic networks. During her work at CMI, she was involved in several international projects and she has published a number of publications within the areas of Green ICT, network economics, ICT innovation, business models for personal electronic networks, broadband development, telecom networks, IT and broadcasting.


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