Token Economy


Within a few years, blockchain or distributed ledger technology (DLT) changed from a niche topic, which was also given little attention in information systems research, to an extremely popular research area. This is not surprising, since business informatics as a cross-sectional discipline critically examines both the technology and its applications, and blockchain / DLT yields research questions that are simultaneously exciting for academics and relevant for the industry. Initially, it were primarily the questions how the technology works and how it can be used profitably in companies that aroused the interest of researchers, but now the interest focus is also on how an increasing tokenization (i.e. the digital mapping of assets) can lead to a fundamental change in the economy and society. Momentarily, it is primarily the financial sector that is dealing intensively with the expected changes, since financing corporate ventures by issuing different token forms has already gone through several stages of development. Given the continuing interest of numerous other industries, such as real estate or energy, in combination with an ever-increasing range of new token forms and the increase of legal security, it can be assumed that public interest in this topic will increase strongly in the coming years. This will go hand in hand with a multitude of new business models triggered by technical progress, a secure legal basis and novel company structures. Experience from recent years has further shown that this change is not exclusively perceived positively, and that this development might raise new problems, for example with regard to privacy and companies’ technical vulnerability. Therefore, it is crucial for information systems researchers to conduct a critical discourse within the academic community and to reach out to the industry to develop models guiding principles that will lead to a better understanding of current developments as well as their possible future effects. This panel therefore deals with the topic of how likely a so-called “token economy” is to emerge and what consequences this might have. In the discussion, advantages and disadvantages will be critically examined and relevant questions for the information systems community will be elaborated upon.



The topic outlined above is to be dealt with in the form of a panel discussion. The first part of the discussion consists of short lectures in which the panel participants outline their own positions and provide an insight into current research projects. Afterwards, the audience is given the opportunity to actively contribute through questions or discussion contributions and to actively suggest relevant topics.



Prof. Dr. Ali Sunyaev,

Prof. Dr. Mary Lacity,

Prof. Dr. Johann Kranz,

Prof. Dr. Gilbert Fridgen,

Prof. Dr. Horst Treiblmaier,

Prof. Dr. Roman Beck,