Benefits and Risks of Using Blockchain in Smart Energy: A Literature Review

  • Emre Erturk Eastern Institute of Technology
  • Dobrila Lopez
  • Wei Yang Yu
Keywords: Smart Energy, Energy Management, Blockchain Systems

Abstract

Being a decentralized system makes Blockchain a suitable technology solution in many cases. The Smart Energy domain has the potential to benefit from the use of Blockchain, by improving data and transaction management, through applications such as peer-to-peer energy trading, grid enhancement, and electric vehicle support. Many researchers have proposed models and prototypes of blockchain-based applications, which are expected to improve the performance of smart energy systems. In this report, a qualitative literature review was performed to look into a sample of these application proposals and to try to identify the impacts of blockchain technology in Smart Energy. This resulted in the discovery of both positive and negative factors. The beneficial factors include increased security, improved data privacy, data transparency and immutability, removal of third-party control and trust, ubiquitous solution, and greater data accessibility. The list of challenges includes limited scalability and speed, off-chain support requirement, high establishment and maintenance cost, and requiring further practical tests. One of the interesting findings is that the impact of Blockchain technology as to whether it may increase or decrease transaction costs is still unclear. Finally, the paper recommends that a future study may focus on economic feasibility and transaction costs, and ascertain which Smart Energy cases and application designs are more appropriate for Blockchain technology.

Author Biographies

Emre Erturk, Eastern Institute of Technology
Dr. Emre Erturk (Corresponding author) is currently a Principal Academic Staff Member at the Eastern Institute of Technology (New Zealand), School of Computing, Hawke’s Bay Campus. His current research interests include Cloud Computing and Blockchain applications in business and education. He has previously published and presented more than fifty articles.
Dobrila Lopez
Dr. Dobrila Lopez is currently a Principal Academic Staff Member at the Eastern Institute of Technology (New Zealand), Auckland Campus. She is currently involved in a large research project to develop and increase peer mentoring among international students.
Wei Yang Yu
Mr. William Yu is currently studying in the Eastern Institute of Technology’s Master of Information Technology program at the Auckland Campus. He is researching Blockchain and other emerging technologies in business.
Published
2020-01-11
How to Cite
Erturk, E., Lopez, D., & Yu, W. Y. (2020). Benefits and Risks of Using Blockchain in Smart Energy: A Literature Review. Contemporary Management Research, 15(3), 205-225. https://doi.org/10.7903/cmr.19650
Section
Application and impact of advanced IT/IS/Internet in business management