Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 1086

Search results for: smart contracts

1086 Cryptocurrency Crime: Behaviors of Malicious Smart Contracts in Blockchain

Authors: Malaw Ndiaye, Karim Konate

Abstract:

Blockchain and smart contracts can be used to facilitate almost any financial transaction. Thanks to these smart contracts, the settlement of dividends and coupons could be automated. The blockchain would allow all these transactions to be saved in a single ledger rather than in many databases through many organizations as is currently the case. Smart contracts have become lucrative and profitable targets for attackers because they can hold a large amount of money. This paper takes stock of cryptocurrency crime by assessing attacks due to smart contracts and the cost of losses. These losses are often the result of two types of malicious contracts: vulnerable contracts and criminal smart contracts. Studying the behavior of malicious contracts allows us to understand the root causes and consequences of attacks and the defense capabilities that exist although they do not definitively solve the crime problem. It makes it possible to approach new defense perspectives which will be concretized in future work.

Keywords: blockchain, malicious smart contracts, crypto-currency, crimes, attacks

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1085 A Survey on the Blockchain Smart Contract System: Security Strengths and Weaknesses

Authors: Malaw Ndiaye, Karim Konate

Abstract:

Smart contracts are computer protocols that facilitate, verify, and execute the negotiation or execution of a contract, or that render a contractual term unnecessary. Blockchain and smart contracts can be used to facilitate almost any financial transaction. Thanks to these smart contracts, the settlement of dividends and coupons could be automated. Smart contracts have become lucrative and profitable targets for attackers because they can hold a great amount of money. Smart contracts, although widely used in blockchain technology, are far from perfect due to security concerns. Since there are recent studies on smart contract security, none of them systematically study the strengths and weaknesses of smart contract security. Some have focused on an analysis of program-related vulnerabilities by providing a taxonomy of vulnerabilities. Other studies are responsible for listing the series of attacks linked to smart contracts. Although a series of attacks are listed, there is a lack of discussions and proposals on improving security. This survey takes stock of smart contract security from a more comprehensive perspective by correlating the level of vulnerability and systematic review of security levels in smart contracts.

Keywords: blockchain, Bitcoin, smart contract, criminal smart contract, security

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1084 Formal Verification for Ethereum Smart Contract Using Coq

Authors: Xia Yang, Zheng Yang, Haiyong Sun, Yan Fang, Jingyu Liu, Jia Song

Abstract:

The smart contract in Ethereum is a unique program deployed on the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) to help manage cryptocurrency. The security of this smart contract is critical to Ethereum’s operation and highly sensitive. In this paper, we present a formal model for smart contract, using the separated term-obligation (STO) strategy to formalize and verify the smart contract. We use the IBM smart sponsor contract (SSC) as an example to elaborate the detail of the formalizing process. We also propose a formal smart sponsor contract model (FSSCM) and verify SSC’s security properties with an interactive theorem prover Coq. We found the 'Unchecked-Send' vulnerability in the SSC, using our formal model and verification method. Finally, we demonstrate how we can formalize and verify other smart contracts with this approach, and our work indicates that this formal verification can effectively verify the correctness and security of smart contracts.

Keywords: smart contract, formal verification, Ethereum, Coq

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1083 A Study of Blockchain Oracles

Authors: Abdeljalil Beniiche

Abstract:

The limitation with smart contracts is that they cannot access external data that might be required to control the execution of business logic. Oracles can be used to provide external data to smart contracts. An oracle is an interface that delivers data from external data outside the blockchain to a smart contract to consume. Oracle can deliver different types of data depending on the industry and requirements. In this paper, we study and describe the widely used blockchain oracles. Then, we elaborate on his potential role, technical architecture, and design patterns. Finally, we discuss the human oracle and its key role in solving the truth problem by reaching a consensus about a certain inquiry and tasks.

Keywords: blockchain, oracles, oracles design, human oracles

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1082 Renegotiating International Contract Clauses: The Case of Investment Environment Changes in Egypt

Authors: Marwa Zein

Abstract:

The long-term of the contract is one of the major features that distinguish international trade and investment contracts from other internal contracts. This is due to the nature of the contract and the huge works required to be performed from one hand or the desire of the parties to achieve stability in their transactions. However, long-term contracts might expose them to certain events and circumstances that impact the capability of the parties to execute their obligations pursuant to these contracts. During the year 2016, the Egyptian government has taken series of economic decisions which greatly impacted the economic and investment environment. Consequently, many contracts have encountered many problems in their execution due to such changes that greatly influence the performance of their obligation, a matter that necessitated the renegotiation of the conditions of these contracts on the basis of the unpredicted changes that could be listed under the Force Majeure Clause. The principle of fair and equitable treatment in investment placed on an obligation on the Egyptian government to consider the renegotiation of contract clauses based on the new conditions. This paper will discuss the idea of renegotiating international trade and investment contracts in Egypt with reference to the changes the economic environment has witnessed lately.

Keywords: change of circumstances, international contracts, investment contracts, renegotiation

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1081 AI-Enabled Smart Contracts for Reliable Traceability in the Industry 4.0

Authors: Harris Niavis, Dimitra Politaki

Abstract:

The manufacturing industry was collecting vast amounts of data for monitoring product quality thanks to the advances in the ICT sector and dedicated IoT infrastructure is deployed to track and trace the production line. However, industries have not yet managed to unleash the full potential of these data due to defective data collection methods and untrusted data storage and sharing. Blockchain is gaining increasing ground as a key technology enabler for Industry 4.0 and the smart manufacturing domain, as it enables the secure storage and exchange of data between stakeholders. On the other hand, AI techniques are more and more used to detect anomalies in batch and time-series data that enable the identification of unusual behaviors. The proposed scheme is based on smart contracts to enable automation and transparency in the data exchange, coupled with anomaly detection algorithms to enable reliable data ingestion in the system. Before sensor measurements are fed to the blockchain component and the smart contracts, the anomaly detection mechanism uniquely combines artificial intelligence models to effectively detect unusual values such as outliers and extreme deviations in data coming from them. Specifically, Autoregressive integrated moving average, Long short-term memory (LSTM) and Dense-based autoencoders, as well as Generative adversarial networks (GAN) models, are used to detect both point and collective anomalies. Towards the goal of preserving the privacy of industries' information, the smart contracts employ techniques to ensure that only anonymized pointers to the actual data are stored on the ledger while sensitive information remains off-chain. In the same spirit, blockchain technology guarantees the security of the data storage through strong cryptography as well as the integrity of the data through the decentralization of the network and the execution of the smart contracts by the majority of the blockchain network actors. The blockchain component of the Data Traceability Software is based on the Hyperledger Fabric framework, which lays the ground for the deployment of smart contracts and APIs to expose the functionality to the end-users. The results of this work demonstrate that such a system can increase the quality of the end-products and the trustworthiness of the monitoring process in the smart manufacturing domain. The proposed AI-enabled data traceability software can be employed by industries to accurately trace and verify records about quality through the entire production chain and take advantage of the multitude of monitoring records in their databases.

Keywords: blockchain, data quality, industry4.0, product quality

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1080 Ethereum Based Smart Contracts for Trade and Finance

Authors: Rishabh Garg

Abstract:

Traditionally, business parties build trust with a centralized operating mechanism, such as payment by letter of credit. However, the increase in cyber-attacks and malicious hacking has jeopardized business operations and finance practices. Emerging markets, owing to their higher banking risks and bigger presence of digital financing, are looking forward to technology-driven solutions, financial inclusion and innovative working paradigms. Blockchain has the potential to enhance transaction transparency and supply chain traceability. It has captured a vast landscape with 200 million crypto users worldwide. Fintech and blockchain products are popping up across brokerage, digital wallets, exchanges, post-trade clearance, settlement, middleware, infrastructure, and base protocols.

Keywords: blockchain, distributed ledger technology, decentralized applications, ethereum, smart contracts, trade finance

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1079 A Multi-Agent Smart E-Market Design at Work for Shariah Compliant Islamic Banking

Authors: Wafa Ghonaim

Abstract:

Though quite fast on growth, Islamic financing at large, and its diverse instruments, is a controversial matter among scholars. This is evident from the ongoing debates on its Shariah compliance. Arguments, however, are inciting doubts and concerns among clients about its credibility, which is harming this lucrative sector. The work here investigates, particularly, some issues related to the Tawarruq instrument. The work examines the issues of linking Murabaha and Wakala contracts, the reselling of commodities to same traders, and the transfer of ownerships. The work affirms that a multi-agent smart electronic market design would facilitate Shariah compliance. The smart market exploits the rational decision-making capabilities of autonomous proxy agents that enable the clients, traders, brokers, and the bank buy and sell commodities, and manage transactions and cash flow. The smart electronic market design delivers desirable qualities that terminate the need for Wakala contracts and the reselling of commodities to the same traders. It also resolves the ownership transfer issues by allowing stakeholders to trade independently. The bank administers the smart electronic market and assures reliability of trades, transactions and cash flow. A multi-agent simulation is presented to validate the concept and processes. We anticipate that the multi-agent smart electronic market design would deliver Shariah compliance of personal financing to the aspiration of scholars, banks, traders and potential clients.

Keywords: Islamic finance, share'ah compliance, smart electronic markets design, multiagent systems

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1078 Challenges of Blockchain Applications in the Supply Chain Industry: A Regulatory Perspective

Authors: Pardis Moslemzadeh Tehrani

Abstract:

Due to the emergence of blockchain technology and the benefits of cryptocurrencies, intelligent or smart contracts are gaining traction. Artificial intelligence (AI) is transforming our lives, and it is being embraced by a wide range of sectors. Smart contracts, which are at the heart of blockchains, incorporate AI characteristics. Such contracts are referred to as "smart" contracts because of the underlying technology that allows contracting parties to agree on terms expressed in computer code that defines machine-readable instructions for computers to follow under specific situations. The transmission happens automatically if the conditions are met. Initially utilised for financial transactions, blockchain applications have since expanded to include the financial, insurance, and medical sectors, as well as supply networks. Raw material acquisition by suppliers, design, and fabrication by manufacturers, delivery of final products to consumers, and even post-sales logistics assistance are all part of supply chains. Many issues are linked with managing supply chains from the planning and coordination stages, which can be implemented in a smart contract in a blockchain due to their complexity. Manufacturing delays and limited third-party amounts of product components have raised concerns about the integrity and accountability of supply chains for food and pharmaceutical items. Other concerns include regulatory compliance in multiple jurisdictions and transportation circumstances (for instance, many products must be kept in temperature-controlled environments to ensure their effectiveness). Products are handled by several providers before reaching customers in modern economic systems. Information is sent between suppliers, shippers, distributors, and retailers at every stage of the production and distribution process. Information travels more effectively when individuals are eliminated from the equation. The usage of blockchain technology could be a viable solution to these coordination issues. In blockchains, smart contracts allow for the rapid transmission of production data, logistical data, inventory levels, and sales data. This research investigates the legal and technical advantages and disadvantages of AI-blockchain technology in the supply chain business. It aims to uncover the applicable legal problems and barriers to the use of AI-blockchain technology to supply chains, particularly in the food industry. It also discusses the essential legal and technological issues and impediments to supply chain implementation for stakeholders, as well as methods for overcoming them before releasing the technology to clients. Because there has been little research done on this topic, it is difficult for industrial stakeholders to grasp how blockchain technology could be used in their respective operations. As a result, the focus of this research will be on building advanced and complex contractual terms in supply chain smart contracts on blockchains to cover all unforeseen supply chain challenges.

Keywords: blockchain, supply chain, IoT, smart contract

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1077 Determination of International Jurisdiction of Courts over Disputes Arising from Electronic Consumer Contracts

Authors: Aslihan Coban

Abstract:

As a result of the rapid development of information communication technology, especially the internet, consumers have become an active party in commerce and in law. Consequently, the protection of consumers in cross-border contracts has become increasingly important. This paper is confined to the international jurisdiction of courts over disputes arising from electronic consumer contracts according to the ‘5718 Turkish Act on Private International Law and Civil Procedure’ and the ‘1215/2012 Council Regulation On Jurisdiction and The Recognition and Enforcement Of Judgments In Civil and Commercial Matters’ (Hereafter ‘Brussels I Regulation’). The international jurisdiction of courts for consumer contracts is recognized under both acts above-mentioned; however, there exist some differences between the said legal regulations. Firstly, while there is a specific provision for electronic consumer contracts in Brussels I Regulation, there is no specific provision in the Turkish Act. Secondly, under the Turkish Act, habitual residence, domicile, and workplace of the other party who is not a consumer are all accepted as jurisdiction elements; while domicile is the only jurisdiction element in Brussels I Regulation. Thirdly, the ability to make jurisdiction agreements in disputes arising from electronic consumer contracts is a controversial issue under the Turkish Act while it is explicitly regulated under Brussels I Regulation that such jurisdiction agreements can be concluded by complying with certain conditions.

Keywords: Brussels I Regulation, electronic consumer contracts, jurisdiction, jurisdiction agreement

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1076 Analysing Implementation of Best Practices in Construction Contracts for Dispute Avoidance

Authors: K. C. Iyer, Yogita Manan Bindal, Sumit Kumar Bakshi

Abstract:

Disputes and litigation are becoming inherent to the construction industry in India, and despite construction being one of the major drivers of growth, there have not been many reforms in the government construction contracts. Many of the disputes arising from the government contracts, can be avoided by the proper drafting of contracts and their administration. This study aims to 1) identify the best practices in the construction contract as reviewed from the research papers and additional literature on contract management, 2) obtain perspectives from the industry experts on the implementation of these best practices with regards to likely challenges and relative benefits for implementing the best practices in construction contracts. The best practices for disputes arising due to delay events have been identified through extensive literature survey. The industry perspective is gathered by way of a questionnaire survey to understand the applicability of the identified best practices, the benefits that are likely to be obtained and the challenges that are likely to be faced in the implementation of these practices. The study concludes with the recommended best practices that can be implemented based on the perspectives obtained from the survey. The findings of the study can be used by the industry professionals while drafting construction contracts with a view to avoid disputes related to delay events.

Keywords: best practices, construction contract, delay, dispute avoidance

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1075 Juridical Protection to Consumers in Electronic Contracts: Need of a Uniform International Law

Authors: Parul Sinha

Abstract:

Electronic commerce facilitates increased choice and information on goods or services for consumers but at the same time it compounds the inequality of bargaining power many consumers face when contracting with sellers. Due to the ‘inequality of bargaining power’ experienced by consumers when contracting by electronic means with business sellers in different jurisdictions, it may be difficult to determine where either the consumer is domiciled or the place where the seller is situated or conducts its business. The question arises in such situation that if one party wants to sue the other, then where can one sue? Which court has jurisdiction to try international conflicts arising from electronic contracts concluded through the internet? Will the same rules applicable to conventional contracts apply? Or should other considerations be taken into account? In all these situations the degree of consumer protection in electronic contracts comes into picture. In the light of the above, the paper discusses the jurisdiction and choice of law rules applied in EU and United States. Further, the paper considers the current uncertainty plaguing questions of jurisdiction in India. Therefore, the jurisdiction and choice of law rules for electronic contracts must be applied consistently and provide an automatic, harmonised rule in favour of the consumer’s jurisdiction and law. Lastly, the paper suggests the need for a uniform law in order to achieve effective juridical protection.

Keywords: electronic commerce, electronic contracts, jurisdiction, consumer protection

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1074 A Survey on Important Factors of the Ethereum Network Performance

Authors: Ali Mohammad Mobaser Azad, Alireza Akhlaghinia

Abstract:

Blockchain is changing our world and launching a new generation of decentralized networks. Meanwhile, Blockchain-based networks like Ethereum have been created and they will facilitate these processes using tools like smart contracts. The Ethereum has fundamental structures, each of which affects the activity of the nodes. Our purpose in this paper is to review similar research and examine various components to demonstrate the performance of the Ethereum network and to do this, and we used the data published by the Ethereum Foundation in different time spots to examine the number of changes that determine the status of network performance. This will help other researchers understand better Ethereum in different situations.

Keywords: blockchain, ethereum, smart contract, decentralization consensus algorithm

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1073 A Case Study on Smart Energy City of the UK: Based on Business Model Innovation

Authors: Minzheong Song

Abstract:

The purpose of this paper is to see a case of smart energy evolution of the UK along with government projects and smart city project like 'Smart London Plan (SLP)' in 2013 with the logic of business model innovation (BMI). For this, it discusses the theoretical logic and formulates a research framework of evolving smart energy from silo to integrated system. The starting point is the silo system with no connection and in second stage, the private investment in smart meters, smart grids implementation, energy and water nexus, adaptive smart grid systems, and building marketplaces with platform leadership. As results, the UK’s smart energy sector has evolved from smart meter device installation through smart grid to new business models such as water-energy nexus and microgrid service within the smart energy city system.

Keywords: smart city, smart energy, business model, business model innovation (BMI)

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1072 A Security Study for Smart Metering Systems

Authors: Musaab Hasan, Farkhund Iqbal, Patrick C. K. Hung, Benjamin C. M. Fung, Laura Rafferty

Abstract:

In modern societies, the smart cities concept raised simultaneously with the projection towards adopting smart devices. A smart grid is an essential part of any smart city as both consumers and power utility companies benefit from the features provided by the power grid. In addition to advanced features presented by smart grids, there may also be a risk when the grids are exposed to malicious acts such as security attacks performed by terrorists. Considering advanced security measures in the design of smart meters could reduce these risks. This paper presents a security study for smart metering systems with a prototype implementation of the user interfaces for future works.

Keywords: security design, smart city, smart meter, smart grid, smart metering system

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1071 A Blockchain-Based Privacy-Preserving Physical Delivery System

Authors: Shahin Zanbaghi, Saeed Samet

Abstract:

The internet has transformed the way we shop. Previously, most of our purchases came in the form of shopping trips to a nearby store. Now, it’s as easy as clicking a mouse. But with great convenience comes great responsibility. We have to be constantly vigilant about our personal information. In this work, our proposed approach is to encrypt the information printed on the physical packages, which include personal information in plain text, using a symmetric encryption algorithm; then, we store that encrypted information into a Blockchain network rather than storing them in companies or corporations centralized databases. We present, implement and assess a blockchain-based system using Ethereum smart contracts. We present detailed algorithms that explain the details of our smart contract. We present the security, cost, and performance analysis of the proposed method. Our work indicates that the proposed solution is economically attainable and provides data integrity, security, transparency, and data traceability.

Keywords: blockchain, Ethereum, smart contract, commit-reveal scheme

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1070 A Study of Key Technologies for the Realization of Smart Grid and Its Research Situation in Pakistan and Abroad

Authors: Arjmand Khaliq, Pemra Sohaib

Abstract:

In this paper smart grid technologies which converts conventional grid into smart grid has been discussed. Integration of advanced technologies including two way communication, advanced control system, sensors, smart metering system and other provide opportunity to make conventional grid a intelligent and automatic system which is named as smart grid. This paper gives the concept of smart grid and functional characteristics of smart grid technology, summed up the research progress in Pakistan and abroad and the significance of developing smart grid. Based on the analysis of the smart grid, smart grid technologies will result a reliable and energy efficient power system in the future. On the other hand smart grid technologies have been reviewed in this paper highlighting the key technologies of smart grid, and points out the problems and challenges in the realization of smart grid.

Keywords: energy, power system reliability, power system monitoring and control, sensor, smart grid, two-way communication

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1069 Constraints to Partnership Based Financing in Islamic Banks: A Systematic Review of Literature

Authors: Muhammad Nouman, Salim Gul, Karim Ullah

Abstract:

Partnership has been understood as the essence of Islamic banking. However, in practice, the non-partnership paradigm dominates the operations of Islamic banks. Islamic banks adopt partnership contracts for the scheme of deposits, especially for term deposit accounts. However, they do not adopt partnership contracts (i.e., Musharakah and Mudarabah) as the main financing scheme. In practice, non-partnership contracts including Murabahah and Ijara are widely used for financing. Many authors have provided different explanations for the less utilization of the partnership contracts as a scheme of financing. However, the typology of constraints remains missing. The extant literature remains scattered, with diverse studies focused on different dimensions of the issue. Therefore, there is no unified understanding of the constraints in the application of the partnership contracts. This paper aims to highlight the major factors hindering the application of partnership contracts, and produce a coherent view by synthesizing different explanations provided in several studies conducted around the globe. The present study employs insights form the extant literature using a systematic review and provides academia, practitioners, and policy makers with a holistic framework to name and make sense of what is making partnership contracts a less attractive option for Islamic banks. A total of 84 relevant publications including 11 books, 14 chapters of edited books, 48 journal articles, 8 conference papers and 3 IMF working papers were selected using a systematic procedure. Analysis of these selected publications followed three steps: i) In the first step of analysis the constraints explicitly appearing in the literature set of 84 articles were extracted, ii) In the second step 27 factors hindering the application of partnership contracts were identified from the constraints extracted in the first step with the overlapping items either eliminated or combined, iii) In the last step the factors identified in the second step were classified into three distinct categories. Our intention was to develop the typology of constraints by connecting the rather abstract concepts into the broader sets of constraints for better conceptualization and policy implications. Our framework highlights that there are mainly three facets of lower preference for partnership contracts of financing. First, there are several factors in the contemporary business settings, prevailing social setting, and the bank’s internal environment that underpin uncertainty in the success of partnership contracts of financing. Second, partnership contracts have lower demand i.e., entrepreneurs prefer to use non-partnership contracts for financing their ventures due to the inherent restraining characteristics of the partnership contracts. Finally, there are certain factors in the regulatory framework that restraint the extensive utilization of partnership contracts of financing by Islamic banks. The present study contributes to the Islamic banking literature in many ways. It provides clarification to the heavily criticized operations of Islamic banks, integrates the scattered literature, and provides a holistic framework for better conceptualization of the key constraints in the application of the partnership contracts and policy implications. Moreover, it demonstrates an application of systematic review in Islamic banking research.

Keywords: Islamic banking, Islamic finance, Mudarabah, Musharakah, partnership, systematic review

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1068 An Agent-Service Oriented Framework for Online Contracts in Virtual Organizations

Authors: Zahra Raeisi, Reza Akbari

Abstract:

Contracting is known as one of the important tasks in virtual organization creation. Contracting is a costly process in terms of time and effort. One way to cut the time and effort is conducting contract electronically. The online contracting enable us to form virtual organization (VO) dynamically. This work presents an agent-service oriented framework for online contracting in virtual organizations. The proposed framework considers the main aspects and steps of traditional contracting process and uses the efficiency of service and agent based methodologies in order to provide a flexible and efficient way to establish contracts electronically in a VO.

Keywords: service oriented architecture, online contracts, agent-oriented architecture, virtual organization

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1067 Regulation of the Commercial Credits in the Foreign Exchange Operations

Authors: Marija Vicic

Abstract:

The purpose of commercial credit regulation in an unified way under Law on Foreign Exchange Operations in Republic of Serbia allows an easier state monitoring of credit operations performed by non-professionals on foreign exchange market. By broadly defining the term “commercial credits“, the state (i.e. National Bank of Serbia) is given the authority to monitor the performance of all obligations under commercial contracts in which the obligations are not performed simultaneously. In the first part of the paper, the author analyses the economic gist of commercial credits with the purpose of giving an insight into their special treatment. The author examines the term „commercial credits“ given in Law on foreign exchange operations and the difference between financial credits and irregular commercial credits (exports and imports of goods and services deemed to be commercial credits) is particularly highlighted. In the second part, the author emphasizes the specifics of commercial credit contracts, especially the effects of special requests for the parties to these contracts to notify National Bank of Serbia and specific regulations regarding maturity of obligations under these commercial credits and the assignment and compensation of the said contracts.

Keywords: commercial credit, foreign exchange operations, commercial transactions, deferred payment, advance payment, (non) resident

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1066 Minding the Gap: Consumer Contracts in the Age of Online Information Flow

Authors: Samuel I. Becher, Tal Z. Zarsky

Abstract:

The digital world becomes part of our DNA now. The way e-commerce, human behavior, and law interact and affect one another is rapidly and significantly changing. Among others things, the internet equips consumers with a variety of platforms to share information in a volume we could not imagine before. As part of this development, online information flows allow consumers to learn about businesses and their contracts in an efficient and quick manner. Consumers can become informed by the impressions that other, experienced consumers share and spread. In other words, consumers may familiarize themselves with the contents of contracts through the experiences that other consumers had. Online and offline, the relationship between consumers and businesses are most frequently governed by consumer standard form contracts. For decades, such contracts are assumed to be one-sided and biased against consumers. Consumer Law seeks to alleviate this bias and empower consumers. Legislatures, consumer organizations, scholars, and judges are constantly looking for clever ways to protect consumers from unscrupulous firms and unfair behaviors. While consumers-businesses relationships are theoretically administered by standardized contracts, firms do not always follow these contracts in practice. At times, there is a significant disparity between what the written contract stipulates and what consumers experience de facto. That is, there is a crucial gap (“the Gap”) between how firms draft their contracts on the one hand, and how firms actually treat consumers on the other. Interestingly, the Gap is frequently manifested by deviation from the written contract in favor of consumers. In other words, firms often exercise lenient approach in spite of the stringent written contracts they draft. This essay examines whether, counter-intuitively, policy makers should add firms’ leniency to the growing list of firms suspicious behaviors. At first glance, firms should be allowed, if not encouraged, to exercise leniency. Many legal regimes are looking for ways to cope with unfair contract terms in consumer contracts. Naturally, therefore, consumer law should enable, if not encourage, firms’ lenient practices. Firms’ willingness to deviate from their strict contracts in order to benefit consumers seems like a sensible approach. Apparently, such behavior should not be second guessed. However, at times online tools, firm’s behaviors and human psychology result in a toxic mix. Beneficial and helpful online information should be treated with due respect as it may occasionally have surprising and harmful qualities. In this essay, we illustrate that technological changes turn the Gap into a key component in consumers' understanding, or misunderstanding, of consumer contracts. In short, a Gap may distort consumers’ perception and undermine rational decision-making. Consequently, this essay explores whether, counter-intuitively, consumer law should sanction firms that create a Gap and use it. It examines when firms’ leniency should be considered as manipulative or exercised in bad faith. It then investigates whether firms should be allowed to enforce the written contract even if the firms deliberately and consistently deviated from it.

Keywords: consumer contracts, consumer protection, information flow, law and economics, law and technology, paper deal v firms' behavior

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1065 Overview of Smart Grid Applications in Turkey

Authors: Onur Elma, Giray E. Kıral, Ugur S. Selamoğuları, Mehmet Uzunoğlu, Bulent Vural

Abstract:

Electrical energy has become indispensable for people's lives and with rapidly developing technology and continuously changing living standards the need for the electrical energy has been on the rise. Therefore, both energy generation and efficient use of energy are very important topics. Smart grid concept has been introduced to provide monitoring, energy efficiency, reliability and energy quality. Under smart grid concept, smart homes, which can be considered as key component in smart grid operation, have appeared as another research area. In this study, first, smart grid research in the world will be reviewed. Then, overview of smart grid applications in Turkey will be given.

Keywords: energy efficiency, smart grids, smart home, applications

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1064 Ageing Population and Generational Turn-Over in the Italian Labour Market: Towards a Sustainable Solidarity

Authors: Marianna Russo

Abstract:

Ageing population and youth unemployment are the major challenges that Western Countries – and Italy in particular – are facing in recent years. These phenomena have a significant impact not only on the labour market and the welfare system, but also on the organisational models of work. Therefore, in Italy, in the past few years, there have been some attempts to regulate the management of generational turn-over: intergenerational pacts, early retirement incentives, solidarity contracts, etc. In particular, this paper aims to focus on the expansive solidarity contracts, that were introduced in the Italian legal system for the first time in 1984. Indeed, they have been little used during the thirty years of their lives, so the Legislative Decree no. 148/2015, implementing the so-called Jobs Act, has given them another opportunity. The paper tries to analyse the rules and the empirical data, looking for a sustainable model of generational turn-over management.

Keywords: ageing population, generational turn-over, Italian jobs' act, solidarity contracts

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1063 Applicable Law to Intellectual and Industrial Property Agreements According to Turkish Private International Law and Rome I Regulation

Authors: Sema Cortoglu Koca

Abstract:

Intellectual and industrial property rules, have a substantial effect on the sustainable development. Intellectual and industrial property rights, as temporary privileges over the products of intellectual activity, determine the supervision of information and technology. The level and scope of intellectual property protection thus influence the flow of technology between developed and developing countries. In addition, intellectual and industrial property rights are based on the notion of balance. Since they are time-limited rights, they reconcile private and public benefits. That is, intellectual and industrial property rights respond to both private interests and public interests by rewarding innovators and by promoting the dissemination of ideas, respectively. Intellectual and industrial property rights can, therefore, be a tool for sustainable development. If countries can balance their private and public interests according to their particular context and circumstances, they can ensure the intellectual and industrial property which promotes innovation and technology transfer relevant for them. People, enterprises and countries who need technology, can transfer developed technology which is acquired by people, enterprises and countries so as to decrease their technological necessity and improve their technology. Because of the significance of intellectual and industrial property rights on the technology transfer law as mentioned above, this paper is confined to intellectual and industrial property agreements especially technology transfer contracts. These are license contract, know-how contract, franchise agreement, joint venture agreement, management agreement, research and development agreement. In Turkey, technology transfer law is still a developing subject. For developing countries, technology transfer regulations are very important for their private international law because these countries do not know which technology transfer law is applicable when conflicts arise. In most technology transfer contracts having international elements, the parties choose a law to govern their contracts. Where the parties do not choose a law, either expressly or impliedly, and matters which is not excluded in party autonomy, the court has to determine the applicable law to contracts in a matter of capacity, material, the formal and essential validity of contracts. For determining the proper law of technology transfer contracts, it is tried to build a rule for applying all technology transfer contracts. This paper is confined to the applicable law to intellectual and industrial property agreements according to ‘5718 Turkish Act on Private International Law and Civil Procedure’ and ‘Regulation (EC) No 593/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 June 2008 on the law applicable to contractual obligations (Rome I)’. Like these complex contracts, to find a rule can be really difficult. We can arrange technology transfer contracts in groups, and we can determine the rule and connecting factors to these groups. For the contracts which are not included in these groups, we can determine a special rule considering the characteristics of the contract.

Keywords: intellectual and industrial property agreements, Rome I regulation, technology transfer, Turkish act on private international law and civil procedure

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1062 An Investigation into the Current Implementation of Design-Build Contracts in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Authors: Ibrahim A. Alhammad, Suleiman A. Al-Otaibi, Khalid S. Al-Gahtani, Naïf Al-Otaibi, Abdulaziz A. Bubshait

Abstract:

In the last decade, the use of project delivery system of design build engineering contracts is increasing in North America due to the reasons of reducing the project duration and minimizing costs. The shift from traditional approach of Design-Bid-Build to Design-Build contracts have been attributed to many factors such as evolution of the regulatory and legal frameworks governing the engineering contracts and improvement in integrating design and construction. The aforementioned practice of contracting is more appropriate in North America; yet, it may not be the case in Saudi Arabia where the traditional approach of construction contracting remains dominant. The authors believe there are number of factors related to the gaps in the level of sophistication of the engineering and management of the construction projects in both countries. A step towards improving the Saudi construction practice by adopting the new trend of construction contracting, this paper identifies the reasons why Design/Build form of contracting are not frequently utilized. A field survey, which includes the questionnaire addressing the research problem, is distributed to three main parties of the construction contracts: clients, consultants, and contractors. The analyzed collected data were statistically sufficient to finding the reasons of not adopting the new trend of good practice of deign build approach in Saudi Arabia. In addition, the reasons are: (1) lack of regulation and legal framework; (2) absence of clear criteria of the owner for the trade-off between competing contractors, (3) and lack of experience, knowledge and skill.

Keywords: design built projects, Saudi Arabia, GCC, mega projects

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1061 Citizen Participation in Smart Cities: Singapore and Tokyo

Authors: Thomas Benson

Abstract:

Smart cities have been heralded as multi-faceted entities which utilise information and communication technologies to enhance citizen participation. The purpose of this paper is to outline authoritative definitions of smart cities and citizen participation and investigate smart city citizen-centrism rhetoric by examining urban governance and citizen participation processes. Drawing on extant literature and official city government documents and websites, Singapore (Singapore) and Tokyo (Japan) are chosen as comparable smart city case studies. For the smart city to be truly realised, this paper concludes that smart cities must do more to incorporate genuine citizen participation mechanisms.

Keywords: citizen participation, smart cities, urban governance, Singapore, Tokyo

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1060 Application of Forward Contract and Crop Insurance as Risk Management Tools of Agriculture: A Case Study in Bangladesh

Authors: M. Bokhtiar Hasan, M. Delowar Hossain, Abu N. M. Wahid

Abstract:

The principal aim of the study is to find out a way to effectively manage the agricultural risks like price volatility, weather risks, and fund shortage. To hedge price volatility, farmers sometimes make contracts with agro-traders but fail to protect themselves effectively due to not having legal framework for such contracts. The study extensively reviews existing literature and find evidence that the majority studies either deal with price volatility or weather risks. If we could address these risks through a single model, it would be more useful to both the farmers and traders. Intrinsically, the authors endeavor in this regard, and the key contribution of this study basically lies in it. Initially, we conduct a small survey aspiring to identify the shortcomings of existing contracts. Later, we propose a model encompassing forward and insurance contracts together where forward contract will be used to hedge price volatility and insurance contract will be used to protect weather risks. Contribution/Originality: The study adds to the existing literature through proposing an integrated model comprising of forward contract and crop insurance which will support both farmers and traders to cope with the agricultural risks like price volatility, weather hazards, and fund shortage. JEL Classifications: O13, Q13

Keywords: agriculture, forward contract, insurance contract, risk management, model

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1059 Critical Success Factors for Sustainable Smart City Project in India

Authors: Debasis Sarkar

Abstract:

Development of a Smart City would depend upon the development of its infrastructure in a smart way. Primarily based on the ideology of the fourth industrial revolution a Smart City project should have Smart governance, smart health care, smart building, smart transportation, smart mobility, smart energy, smart technology and smart citizen. Considering the Indian scenario of current state of cities in India, it has become very essential to decide the specific parameters which would govern the development of a Smart City project. It has been observed that there are significant parameters beyond Information and Communication Technology (ICT), which govern the development of a Smart City project. This paper is an attempt to identify the Critical Success Factors (CSF) which are significantly responsible for the development of a Smart City project in Western India. Responses to questionnaire survey were analyzed on basis of Likert scale. They were further critically evaluated with help of Factor Comparison Method (FCM) and Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP). The project authorities need to incorporate Building Information Modeling (BIM) to make the smart city project more collaborative. To make the project more sustainable, use of flyash in the concrete used, reduced usage of cement and steel, use of alternate fuels like biodiesel is recommended.

Keywords: analytical hierarchical process, building information modeling, critical success factors, factor comparison method

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1058 Key Performance Indicators and the Model for Achieving Digital Inclusion for Smart Cities

Authors: Khalid Obaed Mahmod, Mesut Cevik

Abstract:

The term smart city has recently appeared with many concepts and definitions, but as a clear and simple definition, it can be said that a smart city is a geographical location that has gained efficiency and flexibility in providing public services to citizens through the use of technological and communication technologies, where smart cities connect the various components of the city through major networks. And subsidiary in addition to a set of applications, thus being able to collect data and provide technological solutions to manage resources and provide services. The basis of the work of the smart city is the use of artificial intelligence and Internet of Things technology. The work presents the concept of smart cities, the pillars, criteria, and evaluation indicators on which smart cities depend, and the reasons that prompted the world to move towards its establishment. It also provides a simplified hypothetical way to measure the ideal smart city model by identifying some indicators and key pillars and testing them to determine whether the city can be considered an ideal smart city.

Keywords: smart city, factors, indicators, logic gates, pillars

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1057 Smart Product-Service System Innovation with User Experience: A Case Study of Chunmi

Authors: Ying Yu, Wen-Chi Kuo, Tung-Jung Sung

Abstract:

The Product-Service System (PSS) has received widespread attention due to the increasing global competition in manufacturing and service markets. Today’s smart products and services are driven by Internet of things (IoT) technologies which will promote the transformation from traditional PSS to smart PSS. Although the smart PSS has some of technological achievements in businesses, it often ignores the real demands of target users when using products and services. Therefore, designers should know and learn the User Experience (UX) of smart products, services and systems. However, both of academia and industry still lack relevant development experience of smart PSS since it is an emerging field. In doing so, this is a case study of Xiaomi’s Chunmi, the largest IoT platform in the world, and addresses the two major issues: (1) why Chunmi should develop smart PSS strategies with UX; and (2) how Chunmi could successfully implement the strategic objectives of smart PSS through the design. The case study results indicated that: (1) the smart PSS can distinguish competitors by their unique UX which is difficult to duplicate; (2) early user engagement is crucial for the success of smart PSS; and (3) interaction, expectation, and enjoyment can be treated as a three-dimensional evaluation of UX design for smart PSS innovation. In conclusion, the smart PSS can gain competitive advantages through good UX design in the market.

Keywords: design, smart PSS, user experience, user engagement

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