Modern science is crucial for human progress. Yet, it has some flaws that can hamper this progress. From funding to publishing, this centralized system poses several challenges for scientists. Here, decentralized science (DeSci) can make more open and frictionless science. Smart contract development plays a fundamental role in developing this concept. It automates several processes and removes unnecessary bureaucracy. Let us learn more about this concept in this blog.
Decentralized science (DeSci) is an emerging movement that follows decentralization principles by utilizing blockchain technology to improve and create a more equitable and democratic scientific system. It aims to develop a public infrastructure to fund, make, review, credit, store, and disseminate scientific knowledge impartially and fairly.
DeSci uses tools to make science decentralized. The tools include smart contracts, non-fungible tokens (NFTs), decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs), and more. It makes science more resistant to censorship and removes centralized control of entities like research institutes.
Decentralized access to scientific tools, funding, and communication channels can create an environment where every unconventional idea will flourish.
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Science has been playing a pivotal role in solving many challenges for humans. Despite many positive contributions to human lives, modern science has faced several difficulties.
Typically, researchers and scientists have to publish their findings in a scientific journal to establish a credible reputation in the science field. Publishing requires fees, and well-known scientific publications may charge as high as $5000 fees per article. Consequently, researchers and scientists come under a heavy financial burden.
Additionally, scientific publications are limited and create a monopoly in the scientific community. Usually, these entities publish research papers in journals or specialized magazines, costing high subscription charges. Thus, this model restricts access to knowledge for other researchers and the general public.
Another major challenge in the scientific community is obtaining funding. Governments usually have limited funds. Scientists often give up their potentially revolutionary projects with minimal or no funding.
All these issues are arising due to the centralized nature of scientific entities. Here, decentralized science can resolve these aspects of modern science by developing a more distributed and decentralized scientific research model. DeSci can democratize the funds' access and research paper publications and make every process transparent.
DeSci utilizes all the advanced technologies, including Web3, to create a decentralized economy. It makes fair access to research data for everyone. It eliminates third-party involvement in the scientific world, giving more flexibility to scientists.
DeSci utilizes crucial principles of Web3, including NFTs, DAOs, smart contracts, and more. These essential principles improve scientific funding and encourage collaborations in science.
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Decentralized science uses blockchain technology that enables researchers to create immutable, open, and censorship-resistant databases. These databases can also act as authentic records of ownership rights of scientific research.
Token development in DeSci is a crucial tool for finance projects. It will allow individuals to become an investor or patrons. It will also minimize the dependence of science on institutional or public funding.
Smart contract integration into scientific development and research can bring innumerable advantages in streamlining the entire ecosystem. For peer-review process regulation, smart contacts can establish clear guidelines without involving any intermediaries. Moreover, peer reviews are central components of academic publishing.
Scientists can earn NFTs for peer review. These peer reviews will be available to the general public since a blockchain records all transactions made within the network.
In DeSci, decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs) are communities of like-minded people that power the growth of the scientific community. They are emerging as a better alternative to traditional research entities and corporations.
These organizations use smart contracts on blockchains to alter the way research funding works. They also highlight the underresearched topics.
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The following are some of the use cases that DeSci can provide to the scientific community:
Traditional science face problem associated with intellectual property (IP) rights. Universities and research centers usually do not utilize or value the research papers. Here, researchers can mint their IP as an NFT.
It can guarantee transparent value to developers and reward researchers. Additionally, an IP NFT can become a finance vehicle by trading in a marketplace. IP tokenization gives an additional advantage of detecting wrongful attributions.
Big publishing houses often make science publishing difficult for researchers. Instead of paying scientists, reviewers, and editors for research papers, these entities charge high publishing fees.
People, who indirectly pay for such work through taxation, cannot access this work without paying the publisher.
DeSci develops a trustless and distributed science publication system. It enables transparent and simplified research work.
In this ecosystem, editors and reviewers will get NFTs for their work. DAO will help researchers to reach their audience without any third-party publications.
Researchers find it challenging to get funding for their science projects. In DeSci, researchers can use DAOs, crowdfunding, cryptos, and other fundraising methods to finance their work.
They are better funding models than the traditional ones. Individuals or DAOs, who will be interested in the specific research will provide the funds.
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We have highlighted the following DeSci projects that are positively impacting scientific research and development:
VitaDAO is a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) aimed at financing longevity research openly and democratically. It is one of the best instances of DeSci in operation. VITA token owners govern VitaDAO.
They are mainly concerned with drug research decentralization and aimed at extending human life and health span. They invest in the initial stages of research to convert it into biotech firms.
With funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the campaign has grown from $9 million to $9 billion.
AntidoteDAO is a community for cancer funding efforts and other cancer-related initiatives. Their ecosystem involves a governance token and an NFT collection, allowing people to vote on where funds should be allocated.
A primary focus of the DAO is to provide $100K seed fund grants to cancer research teams and funding organizations assisting cancer research and cancer patients. The DAO's Medical Advisory team reviews research initiatives before putting them to a vote in the community.
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DeSci is emerging as a promising and reliable alternative structure to traditional scientific institutions. DeSci, with the help of blockchain-based tools like smart contracts and tokens, can become a breakthrough in science.
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