January 21, 2005

Electronic Contracting (WEC '05)

WEC '05 has announced their call for papers. You have until 28th Feb to get your submissions to them. The workshop itself is 18th July, in Munich.

This new workshop looks at contracts on the net, and my paper on The Ricardian Contract was presented at the San Diego event last year (presentation actually given by Mark Miller!). The keynote was given by Nick Szabo, the inventor of the smart contracts concept.

The idea of doing contracts over the net has always been there. People expected it to take off and sweep the world in the mid 90s, like every other thing. Yet very little has occurred, and my own experiences with the Ricardian Contract remained for a decade about as far forward as we had got with practical digitally signed contracts. (Recently, it seems that Estonia's national smart card system has been used for contractual negotiations, so it's a bit of a competition now.)

I have a new perspective on why this and other things didn't take off. I'm writing it up in a paper form, but I doubt it will be ready for this conference (maybe for the one Adam just posted on). In a nutshell, the reason contracting remains a pipe dream is because we haven't got the infrastructure in place as yet. What precisely that infrastructure is, I'm writing up!

Second IEEE International Workshop on
Electronic Contracting (WEC '05)
July 18, 2005, Munich, Germany

Call for Papers

Real world commerce is largely built on a fabric of contracts. Considered abstractly, a contract is an agreed framework of rules used by separately interested parties to coordinate their plans in order to realize cooperative opportunities, while simultaneously limiting their risk from each other's misbehavior. Electronic commerce is encouraging the growth of contract-like mechanisms whose terms are partially machine understandable and enforceable.

Building on the success of the First IEEE International Workshop on Electronic Contracting (WEC-04), this second edition is the forum to discuss innovative ideas at the interface between business, legal, and formal notions of contracts. The target audiences will be mainly researchers, scientists, software architects, but also contract lawyers, economists, and industry professionals who need to be acquainted with the state of the art technologies and the future trends in electronic contracting. The event will take place in Munich, Germany on July 18, 2005. IEEE WEC 2005 will be held in conjunction with The International Conference on Electronic Commerce (IEEE CEC 2005).

Topics of interest include but are not limited to the following:

Contract languages and user interfaces
Computer aided contract design, construction, and composition
Computer aided approaches to contract negotiation
Role of electronic contracts in IT governance
Relationship of electronic and legal enforcement mechanisms
Electronic vs. legal concepts of non-repudiation
Privacy vs. reputation and recourse
Contracts and mechanism design


Authors are invited to submit original and significant research contributions in the aforementioned areas. All submissions will be peer-reviewed by the members of the international program committee. We are negotiating to publish the proceedings in the Springer Lecture Notes in Computer Science. Full papers must not exceed 16 pages and conform to the LNCS style. We accept papers in PDF and PS format.

Important Dates

Paper submission: February 28, 2005
Paper notification: April 7, 2005
Camera-ready papers: April 30, 2005
Workshop Date: July 18, 2005

Workshop Chairs

Claudio Bartolini, HP Laboratories, USA, claudio.bartolini@hp.com
Mathias Sallé, HP Laboratories, USA, mathias.salle@hp.com

Program Committee

Samuil Angelov (Eindhoven University of Technology, The Netherlands)
Boualem Benatallah (University of New South Wales, Australia)
Asit Dan (IBM Research, USA)
Aspassia Daskalopulu (University of Thessaly, Greece)
Marlon Dumas (Queesland University of Technology, Australia)
Andrew Farrell (Imperial College London, UK)
Anthony Finkelstein (University College London, UK)
Chiara Francalanci (Politecnico di Milano, Italy)
Claude Godart (University Henri Poincaré Nancy 1 and INRIA, France)
Ian Grigg (Systemics, USA)
Alexander Keller (IBM Research, USA)
Cuihong Li (Carnegie-Mellon University, USA)
Heiko Ludwig (IBM Research, USA)
Emil Lupu (Imperial College London, UK)
Tom Maibaum (McMaster University, Canada)
Dave Marvit (Fujitsu Laboratories, USA)
Zoran Milosevic (DSTC, Australia)
Enrico Nardelli (NESTOR - Universita' di Roma Tor Vergata, Italy)
Andrea Omicini (University of Bologna, Italy)
Barbara Pernici (Politecnico di Milano, Italy)
Chris Preist (HP Laboratories, UK)
Wim Van Grembergen (University of Antwerp, Belgium)
Andreas Wombacher (University of Twente, The Netherlands)

Posted by iang at January 21, 2005 06:08 PM | TrackBack

Trusted Computing can play an important role in online contracts. TC allows you to credibly commit to handling data according to certain rules. Without something like TC this is effectively impossible, especially in relationships that cross jurisdictions or where there is uncertainty about the identity of the participants.

Posted by: Cypherpunk at January 21, 2005 07:14 PM
Post a comment

Remember personal info?

Hit preview to see your comment as it would be displayed.