Can blockchain technology facilitate the unbundling of higher education

Ira Sood, Henri Pirkkalainen, Anthony F. Camilleri

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
21 Downloads (Pure)


Higher education is in dire need of reform in order keep up with the rapidly advancing technology and student needs surrounding it. Unbundling of higher education has been discussed as one of the potential directions of reform. Prior research has suggested that blockchain technology has the potential to play an essential role in facilitating such change in higher education. However, the ways in which blockchain can facilitate unbundling remains missing in literature. We specifically address this gap. This study reports on a qualitative study with 17 respondents in the field of higher education as well as blockchain technology. Our findings indicate three specific areas of unbundling that can be facilitated with blockchain technology, namely new governance model, modular student experience and enhanced faculty roles. We explain how four key characteristics of blockchain (i.e., decentralization, immutability, pseudonymity and self-sovereignty) facilitate those three areas of unbundling in specific. The findings of this study can aid both the universities and the blockchain community in understanding how the concept of blockchain can be embedded effectively in the unbundling of higher education.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCSEDU 2020 - Proceedings of the 12th International Conference on Computer Supported Education
EditorsH. Chad Lane, Susan Zvacek, James Uhomoibhi
PublisherScience and Technology Publications (SciTePress)
Number of pages8
VolumeVolume 2: CSEDU
ISBN (Electronic)9789897584176
Publication statusPublished - 2020
Publication typeA4 Article in conference proceedings
EventInternational Conference on Computer Supported Education - Virtual, Online
Duration: 2 May 20204 May 2020


ConferenceInternational Conference on Computer Supported Education
CityVirtual, Online


  • Blockchain Technology
  • Higher Education
  • Unbundling

Publication forum classification

  • Publication forum level 0

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Information Systems
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Education


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