About the Blockchain Center of Excellence

The vision of the Blockchain Center of Excellence is to make the Sam M. Walton College of Business a premier academic leader of blockchain application research and education.

About the Blockchain Center of Excellence

The Blockchain Center of Excellence (BCoE) was established in May of 2018 within the Department of Information Systems in the Sam M. Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas. The vision is to make the Sam M. Walton College of Business a premiere academic leader of blockchain application research and education in areas such as supply chains, retail innovation and advanced analytics. We provide a balanced approach across public, private, and hybrid blockchains.

The BCoE works in close collaboration with major Arkansas-based companies that help us set the agenda for blockchain curricula and research. The center benefits information systems students, as well as other students across the Walton College and the University of Arkansas. Students learn the latest developments in the technology and create new applications, often based on use cases provided by BCoE members.

Mary Lacity, Director of the Blockchain Center of Excellence

Dr. Mary C. Lacity is a Walton Professor of Information Systems and Director of the Blockchain Center of Excellence in Sam M. Walton College of Business at The University of Arkansas. She was previously Curators’ Distinguished Professor at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. She has held visiting positions at MIT, the London School of Economics, Washington University, and Oxford University. She is a Certified Outsourcing Professional ®, Industry Advisor for Symphony Ventures, and Senior Editor for MIS Quarterly Executive. Her recent research focuses on improving business services using Robotic Process Automation (RPA), Cognitive Automation (CA), and Blockchain technologies.

She has conducted case studies and surveys of hundreds of organizations on their adoption journeys. She has given keynote speeches and executive seminars worldwide and has served as an expert witness for the US Congress. She was inducted into the IAOP’s Outsourcing Hall of Fame in 2014, one of only three academics to ever be inducted. She was the recipient of the 2008 Gateway to Innovation Award sponsored by the IT Coalition, Society for Information Management, and St. Louis RCGA. She has published 28 books, most recently, A Manager’s Guide to Blockchains for Business, SB Publishing, UK.  Her publications have appeared in the Harvard Business ReviewSloan Management ReviewMIS Quarterly, MIS Quarterly Executive, IEEE Computer, Communications of the ACM, and many other academic and practitioner outlets. She is among the top scholars in Information Systems as measured by citations to her work.

Daniel Conway, Associate Director of the Blockchain Center of Excellence

Professor Conway is Associate Director for the Blockchain Center of Excellence. He previously served on faculty at Notre Dame, Indiana University, Northwestern, Iowa, Virginia Tech, Florida and South Florida teaching topics from Analytics, Data Science, and Digital Transformation. He was the first professor in residence at Cisco Systems and has decades of consulting experience in analytics and artificial intelligence. He currently focuses on blockchain and digital transformation.

Kathryn Carlisle, Senior Managing Director of the Blockchain Center of Excellence

Kathryn Carlisle is the Senior Managing Director of the Blockchain Center of Excellence in the Sam M. Walton College at the University of Arkansas. She holds a Master's of Digital Currency from The University of Nicosia in Cyprus, the first institution in the world to offer this degree. Kathryn founded Distributed Tech Partners, a blockchain and cryptocurrency consulting business, that enabled her to lead product design, manage communities and pilot projects with businesses, startups and non-profits based all over the country.

She is a proud Alumni of the University of Arkansas, where she received a dual-degree in International Business and Spanish Language. Kathryn will lead the Blockchain Center of Excellence on outreach for students, startups and locally based companies interested in learning and implementing this emerging technology.

Executive Advisory Board

Founding Members

New Members

Blockchain Enthusiasts