MARCH 10,2022

The impact of a blockchain platform on trust in established relationships: a case study of wine supply chains

Since Brexit, logistics firms have faced addition friction at UK Borders.  There have been calls for automated digital borders, but few such systems exist. A new paper by DECADE researchers draws on the Reducing Friction in International Trade (RFIT) project.  RFIT developed a supply chain platform that integrates with UK Border agencies and uses blockchain to secure a common data set, reducing errors, improving data visibility and helping build trust.

The case example of the import of wine from Australia was used to study the technological characteristics of blockchain and how inbuilt data transparency and integrity affect trust and trustworthiness. Trust is imperative in any business dealings. Current academic literature on the role of trust in supply chains examines simple, linear supply chains. However, there is limited use of trust building frameworks to study relationships within the complex multiparty supply chains that are typical of today’s global supply chains.

Research finds that the RFIT blockchain platform improved the process of trust formation and maintenance in relationships between participants of the wine supply chain. The end-to-end visibility of immutable data helped create a trust ecosystem, broadening trust relationships beyond the business-to-business dyad. However, technology does not change the requirement for trust between supply partners or the trust-based policy of the UK Government at the customs border. Read the full article here.


MARCH 03,2022

A Token Gesture is an academic research project and an exhibition led by researchers at the Institute for Design Informatics, part of the UKRI funded DECaDE: Centre for a Decentralised Digital Economy. Through this, we plan to introduce, explore and critique new public interactions and ownership of digital art via ‘non-fungible tokens’ – more commonly known as NFTs.  

In this project, members of the public in Edinburgh will be able to: 

  • Generate unique pieces of digital art through a street-level, walk-up interaction 
  • Register their artwork for display in the exhibition via the InSpace City Screen 
  • Mint, claim and own a non-transferable NFT, representing their piece of art, that will allow them to control how their piece is displayed 

Two Scottish based generative artists Sasha Belitskaja and Cameron “Gingey” have worked with our researchers to create a system where anyone can generate a unique piece of digital art simply by presenting a colour to a fixed camera.

Participants are then carefully guided through setting up a crypto wallet to claim and mint an NFT representing their piece. This NFT – a unique, digital token – cannot be transferred, or exchanged. However, it serves to register the artwork, evidence an individual’s contribution, and will allow them to control when the artwork is displayed on the City Screen projectors. 

For more information on this, please visit


FEBRUARY 22, 2022

Digital image manipulation has contributed enormously the way fake news is being spread online in recent times. Images and videos are usually subjected to one or several transformations during redistribution on the Internet. These transformations could lead to the spread of misinformation and could totally change the story told by the original image/video. In the video, we show how AI could be used to link a transformed visual content back to its original source. Watch the video here.


FEBRUARY 22, 2022

This project describes how we are using self-sovereign identity technologies to allow photojournalists to distribute and assert ownership of images in a privacy-preserving way. In the video we outline our work so far and provide details of future work on this project. Watch video here.


SEPTEMBER 30, 2021

We are happy to launch DECaDE innovation brochure 2021.  DECaDE was launched in October 2020 and is a 5-year National Research Centre exploring how emerging data technologies such as Distributed Ledger Technology (aka `Blockchain’) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) could transform our digital economy through decentralised platforms. DECaDE is co-creating exciting research projects with industries and public sector end users in the field of decentralised digital economy, with particular focus on creative economy as well as focused on capability building by co-funding PhD studentships and research fellows. DECaDE Autumn edition brochure focuses on our mission, vision, and our industry engagement strategy.  We are currently engaged in 4 thematic projects which are Decentralised Registry for Content AttributionDecentralised Trading Floor for Content Attribution and RightsFuture of Work and Content Production, and Identity in the Decentralised Digital Economy as well as one agile project Decentralisation in Supply Chain Management. The brochure outlines our activities on all current projects and research and publication outputs. Read the web version of the brochure or download it here. For more information or to partner with us Get In Touch.


OCTOBER 1, 2020

The University of Surrey, together with the University of Edinburgh and Digital Catapult, has today launched the Digital Economy Centre for the Decentralised Digital Economy (DECaDE), thanks to £4million awarded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council and £6million investment from industrial partners.

In a short space of time, we have seen our economy transformed by digital technology, offering everyone the opportunity to be a producer, seller and direct consumer of services. But these dynamic, peer to peer markets are all underpinned by centralised digital platforms. Users rarely have a say in their governance decisions, which often made isolation of the global impacts they have on society.

DECaDE asks what can we do to transform this emerging future economy into one that is fair, that has appropriate governance, and maximises opportunites for everyone to create value. How can decentralised platforms enabled by emerging data-centric technologies like Artificial Intelligence, Distributed Ledgers and Blockchain transform our future economy – and the way we work, interact and create value.

DECaDE is part of a programme of Next Stage Digital Economy Centres that will take forward previously funded inter and multidisciplinary applied digital economy research to “the next stage”, ultimately easing the pathway to better commercialisation. Across all five funded centres, the EPSRC contribution of £22 million has leveraged more than £29.5 million of partner contributions from industry and the universities involved.