Pratt Institute School of Design

Blockchain, Behavior, and Commonweal
Effie Kyoungmin Ryu
How Blockchains could change the world? This research suggests using the principles of blockchain technology to build a system that serves to guide public behavior toward the achievement of the commonweal. Three particular attributes of blockchain—encryption, decentralization, and open-source—are the crucial elements of this system, which can be applied to many situational contexts and systems of organization in society. With research through design methodology, I tested the expectations when this framework is applied to concrete social, behavioral, and environmental circumstances.

Visual and Experiential Analysis

Historical & Contextual Concept Map
This concept map organizes the characteristics of blockchain and applies its principles to human behavior to bring us closer to the ultimate commonweal. This research explores the core applicable principles of blockchains. In this historical and contextual framework, the research was focused on the evolution of these technologies and highlighted the principles of blockchain as the focus on this idea. The map shows the overall concept of this idea, and the data obtained from the research shows a certain correlation, showing the direction toward the goal–commonweal.

Blockchain Sketch Project
This project is a series of drawings reflecting on my thoughts generated about the research of blockchain technology. For 100 days, I made a drawing that reflects my ideas, which contain: the history of blockchain, the potential usage of blockchain, the principle of blockchain, behavior, and socio-psychology. The drawings represent words, sentences, or the context of the reading, or thoughts generated while researching.

Remix Through Blockchain
‘Remix Through Blockchain’ project involves physical objects and light. The object takes on the role of a system, and the light represents society’s point of view towards the world. The shadow represents how the system can influence point of view. In this project, the thesis idea is expressed through physical objects. A physical component of an otherwise mostly theoretical project makes the project more inclusive and approachable for more people.

This project is reflected in three communication artifacts–a written book, a visual artwork, and a TED talk–that are about decentralization. The paper models reflect the decentralized social construction.

World Pandemic Drill
This project suggests an open-source platform that offers the instruction manual, status updates on the virus, and a pandemic drill, reflecting the current COVID-19 crisis. This platform could be shared through blockchain so that anyone can refer to and adjust it. As we look forward to the inevitable next global problem, multiple simulations should be an opportunity for the world to work together to find a solution. Different simulations, each based on different specific scenarios of an infectious viral outbreak, can help countries plan a primary response to situations, to consider variables, and perhaps to uncover otherwise unexpected conditions.
Capstone Project
This capstone project consists of a simulation video and accompanying website that serve as visual responses to my thesis, ‘Blockchain, Behavior, and Commonweal,’ an examination and exploration of how blockchain technology's principles can positively influence human behavior and commonweal. The video introduces the thesis and explains the research in order to help the viewer understand the principles of blockchain. Furthermore, the video uses an animated simulation of the thesis to show how social problems relating to plastics waste are represented with the principles of blockchain.