How to Implement Zero-Knowledge Proof in Blockchain Applications


30 May 2023
How to Implement Zero-Knowledge Proof in Blockchain Applications

As the importance of security and trust have grown within the blockchain technology sphere, it has become vital to establish strong methods for safeguarding sensitive information and maintaining privacy. Zero-knowledge proof, a mechanism that has attracted considerable interest, allows for the verification of data without exposing the actual content. In this article, we will delve into the effective incorporation of zero-knowledge proof within blockchain applications. We will explain how to implement Zero-Knowledge Proof in Blockchain Application. By comprehending its underlying principles and complexities and adhering to the steps detailed below, businesses can utilize this influential instrument to enhance their blockchain solutions in terms of privacy, integrity, and authentication.

Understanding Zero-Knowledge Proof

Fundamentally, zero-knowledge proof is a cryptographic notion permitting one entity, termed as the prover, to demonstrate the accuracy of a certain claim to another entity, called the verifier, without disclosing any details about the claim itself. Put simply, zero-knowledge proof allows the prover to persuade the verifier of a statement's truth while keeping the relevant data or knowledge hidden. This concept was first put forward by Shafi Goldwasser, Silvio Micali, and Charles Rackoff in 1985 and has since emerged as an indispensable resource in maintaining data privacy and security.

For a zero-knowledge proof to be successful, it requires four main elements. The prover, the verifier, the statement, and the proof. The prover is responsible for establishing the truthfulness of a statement without divulging any actual information. On the other hand, it is up to verifier to confirm that proof offered by prover is accurate without acquiring any knowledge concerning underlying details. Meanwhile, the statement symbolizes what the prover seeks to validate whereas proof embodies evidence supplied by prover in order to persuade verifier regarding validity of said statement.

Why Use Zero-Knowledge Proof in Blockchain?

The blockchain technology, characterized by its decentralized nature, transparency, and immutability, has revolutionized various sectors. However, as much as transparency is a boon in blockchain applications, it can sometimes become a bane when it comes to privacy. This is where the concept of Zero-Knowledge Proof (ZKP) comes into play.

Benefits of Zero-Knowledge Proof in Blockchain

Zero-Knowledge Proofs offer several advantages that make them an attractive choice for enhancing privacy and security in blockchain applications:

  • Enhanced Privacy: ZKP allows users to verify transactions without revealing any additional information beyond the fact that the transaction is valid. This helps protect sensitive information from being publicly accessible on the blockchain.
  • Reduced Fraud: By ensuring that only valid transactions are added to the blockchain, ZKPs can significantly decrease the potential for fraudulent activity.
  • Increased Efficiency: In some scenarios, ZKP can reduce the amount of data that needs to be stored on the blockchain. With ZKP, the proof of a transaction's validity can be much smaller than the transaction data itself.
  • Greater Interoperability: ZKP enables secure interactions between different blockchain systems, facilitating cross-chain transactions and increasing the overall interoperability of the blockchain ecosystem.

Current Applications of Zero-Knowledge Proof in Blockchain 

There are several notable applications currently using Zero-Knowledge Proofs to enhance their operations:

  • Zcash: This cryptocurrency uses ZKP (specifically a variant called zk-SNARKs) to provide its users with the option to hide the sender, receiver, and value of transactions, all while allowing network miners to verify transactions without gaining any knowledge about the specifics.
  • Ethereum: Ethereum has been exploring the integration of ZKP to improve both privacy and scalability. It aims to enable private transactions and to create off-chain transactions that can be verified on-chain.
  • StarkWare: StarkWare uses ZKP (specifically zk-STARKs) to enhance scalability and privacy in various applications, including decentralized exchanges and gaming platforms. The technology enables processing and verification of large amounts of data off-chain, reducing the load on the blockchain itself.

These examples illustrate the diverse uses and potential of Zero-Knowledge Proofs in blockchain applications. The ability to prove and verify transactions without revealing any additional information is a powerful tool that can significantly enhance the privacy, security, and efficiency of blockchain systems.

How to Implement Zero-Knowledge Proof in blockchain applications

The initial step involves a comprehensive grasp of ZKP and its variants such as zk-SNARKs (Zero-Knowledge Succinct Non-Interactive Argument of Knowledge) and zk-STARKs (Zero-Knowledge Scalable Transparent ARguments of Knowledge). This involves studying cryptographic principles, mathematical concepts, and computational theories underpinning these proofs.

Read our Ultimate Guide to ZKP: zk-SNARKs vs zk-STARKs

The next phase of 'How to Implement Zero-Knowledge Proof' requires understanding the blockchain platform. This includes knowledge of the platform's architecture, its scripting language, and its privacy and security protocols. The choice of platform may depend on the specific requirements of the application, as different platforms offer varying degrees of support for ZKP.

The actual implementation process begins with defining the private and public inputs for the proof. The private inputs are the data that the prover wants to keep secret. The public inputs are the information that can be openly shared. A 'witness' is then generated, which is a solution to the mathematical problem defined by these inputs.

The next step is the creation of a proving key and a verification key, using a setup algorithm. The proving key generates proofs, and the verification key checks the validity of these proofs. After this, the prover uses the proving key and the witness to create a proof. It asserts that they know a solution to the problem without revealing the solution itself.

Once the proof is generated, it can be verified by anyone using the verification key. This ensures that the proof is valid and that the prover knows the private inputs. All without revealing any additional information.

After the successful verification of the proof, it can be integrated into the blockchain application. This could involve creating transactions that include the proof, or setting up smart contracts that require a valid proof to execute certain functions.

Challenges and Considerations

Incorporating zero-knowledge proof into blockchain applications entails numerous hurdles and deliberations. To capitalize on the advantages of zero-knowledge proof, grasping and alleviating these challenges is vital. Some important aspects to take into account are:

Operational Overhead and Proficiency

Assessing Performance Consequences: The computations in zero-knowledge proof can be demanding, possibly impacting blockchain applications' performance. It is critical to examine the operational overhead induced by the chosen protocol and refine it as much as feasible.

Refinement Approaches: Investigating methods like enhanced algorithms, parallel computation, or assigning calculations to specialized equipment can help alleviate operational overhead and boost efficiency.

Expandability and Compatibility

Tackling Expandability Issues: Zero-knowledge proof protocols might cause challenges in expandability when employed on a massive scale. As the blockchain network expands, both computational necessities and communication intricacies of zero-knowledge proofs can considerably rise. Inspecting expandability solutions, like sharding or layer-two protocols, assists in surmounting these issues.

Compatibility Among Networks: Certifying harmony and compatibility of implementations amidst various blockchain networks is essential for unobstructed collaboration between diverse systems. Contemplate standards and protocols that enable cross-chain interaction to accomplish compatibility.

Security Threats and Confidence Presumptions

Scrutinizing Assumptions and Vulnerabilities. ZKP protocols are founded on distinct assumptions and cryptographic building blocks. Evaluating assumed premises and possible susceptibilities tied to the chosen protocol is imperative. Staying up-to-date with any breakthroughs or latent flaws in the protocol aids in maintaining long-term security.

Supplementary Security Precautions. Although zero-knowledge proofs deliver superior privacy and security, one should not be overly dependent on them. Implementing supplementary safety measures, like secure key administration, encryption, and stringent access control, offers extra levels of safeguarding.

Thorough contemplation of these hurdles and addressing them throughout the implementation stage enables organizations to surmount potential impediments and effectively integrate zero-knowledge proof into their blockchain applications. It is critical to stay current with the newest research and developments in zero-knowledge proof methods to warrant the security, efficacy, and expandability of the executed solution.

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Token Engineering Process

Kajetan Olas

13 Apr 2024
Token Engineering Process

Token Engineering is an emerging field that addresses the systematic design and engineering of blockchain-based tokens. It applies rigorous mathematical methods from the Complex Systems Engineering discipline to tokenomics design.

In this article, we will walk through the Token Engineering Process and break it down into three key stages. Discovery Phase, Design Phase, and Deployment Phase.

Discovery Phase of Token Engineering Process

The first stage of the token engineering process is the Discovery Phase. It focuses on constructing high-level business plans, defining objectives, and identifying problems to be solved. That phase is also the time when token engineers first define key stakeholders in the project.

Defining the Problem

This may seem counterintuitive. Why would we start with the problem when designing tokenomics? Shouldn’t we start with more down-to-earth matters like token supply? The answer is No. Tokens are a medium for creating and exchanging value within a project’s ecosystem. Since crypto projects draw their value from solving problems that can’t be solved through TradFi mechanisms, their tokenomics should reflect that. 

The industry standard, developed by McKinsey & Co. and adapted to token engineering purposes by Outlier Ventures, is structuring the problem through a logic tree, following MECE.
MECE stands for Mutually Exclusive, Collectively Exhaustive. Mutually Exclusive means that problems in the tree should not overlap. Collectively Exhaustive means that the tree should cover all issues.

In practice, the “Problem” should be replaced by a whole problem statement worksheet. The same will hold for some of the boxes.
A commonly used tool for designing these kinds of diagrams is the Miro whiteboard.

Identifying Stakeholders and Value Flows in Token Engineering

This part is about identifying all relevant actors in the ecosystem and how value flows between them. To illustrate what we mean let’s consider an example of NFT marketplace. In its case, relevant actors might be sellers, buyers, NFT creators, and a marketplace owner. Possible value flow when conducting a transaction might be: buyer gets rid of his tokens, seller gets some of them, marketplace owner gets some of them as fees, and NFT creators get some of them as royalties.

Incentive Mechanisms Canvas

The last part of what we consider to be in the Discovery Phase is filling the Incentive Mechanisms Canvas. After successfully identifying value flows in the previous stage, token engineers search for frictions to desired behaviors and point out the undesired behaviors. For example, friction to activity on an NFT marketplace might be respecting royalty fees by marketplace owners since it reduces value flowing to the seller.


Design Phase of Token Engineering Process

The second stage of the Token Engineering Process is the Design Phase in which you make use of high-level descriptions from the previous step to come up with a specific design of the project. This will include everything that can be usually found in crypto whitepapers (e.g. governance mechanisms, incentive mechanisms, token supply, etc). After finishing the design, token engineers should represent the whole value flow and transactional logic on detailed visual diagrams. These diagrams will be a basis for creating mathematical models in the Deployment Phase. 

Token Engineering Artonomous Design Diagram
Artonomous design diagram, source: Artonomous GitHub

Objective Function

Every crypto project has some objective. The objective can consist of many goals, such as decentralization or token price. The objective function is a mathematical function assigning weights to different factors that influence the main objective in the order of their importance. This function will be a reference for machine learning algorithms in the next steps. They will try to find quantitative parameters (e.g. network fees) that maximize the output of this function.
Modified Metcalfe’s Law can serve as an inspiration during that step. It’s a framework for valuing crypto projects, but we believe that after adjustments it can also be used in this context.

Deployment Phase of Token Engineering Process

The Deployment Phase is final, but also the most demanding step in the process. It involves the implementation of machine learning algorithms that test our assumptions and optimize quantitative parameters. Token Engineering draws from Nassim Taleb’s concept of Antifragility and extensively uses feedback loops to make a system that gains from arising shocks.

Agent-based Modelling 

In agent-based modeling, we describe a set of behaviors and goals displayed by each agent participating in the system (this is why previous steps focused so much on describing stakeholders). Each agent is controlled by an autonomous AI and continuously optimizes his strategy. He learns from his experience and can mimic the behavior of other agents if he finds it effective (Reinforced Learning). This approach allows for mimicking real users, who adapt their strategies with time. An example adaptive agent would be a cryptocurrency trader, who changes his trading strategy in response to experiencing a loss of money.

Monte Carlo Simulations

Token Engineers use the Monte Carlo method to simulate the consequences of various possible interactions while taking into account the probability of their occurrence. By running a large number of simulations it’s possible to stress-test the project in multiple scenarios and identify emergent risks.

Testnet Deployment

If possible, it's highly beneficial for projects to extend the testing phase even further by letting real users use the network. Idea is the same as in agent-based testing - continuous optimization based on provided metrics. Furthermore, in case the project considers airdropping its tokens, giving them to early users is a great strategy. Even though part of the activity will be disingenuine and airdrop-oriented, such strategy still works better than most.

Time Duration

Token engineering process may take from as little as 2 weeks to as much as 5 months. It depends on the project category (Layer 1 protocol will require more time, than a simple DApp), and security requirements. For example, a bank issuing its digital token will have a very low risk tolerance.

Required Skills for Token Engineering

Token engineering is a multidisciplinary field and requires a great amount of specialized knowledge. Key knowledge areas are:

  • Systems Engineering
  • Machine Learning
  • Market Research
  • Capital Markets
  • Current trends in Web3
  • Blockchain Engineering
  • Statistics


The token engineering process consists of 3 steps: Discovery Phase, Design Phase, and Deployment Phase. It’s utilized mostly by established blockchain projects, and financial institutions like the International Monetary Fund. Even though it’s a very resource-consuming process, we believe it’s worth it. Projects that went through scrupulous design and testing before launch are much more likely to receive VC funding and be in the 10% of crypto projects that survive the bear market. Going through that process also has a symbolic meaning - it shows that the project is long-term oriented.

If you're looking to create a robust tokenomics model and go through institutional-grade testing please reach out to Our team is ready to help you with the token engineering process and ensure your project’s resilience in the long term.


What does token engineering process look like?

  • Token engineering process is conducted in a 3-step methodical fashion. This includes Discovery Phase, Design Phase, and Deployment Phase. Each of these stages should be tailored to the specific needs of a project.

Is token engineering meant only for big projects?

  • We recommend that even small projects go through a simplified design and optimization process. This increases community's trust and makes sure that the tokenomics doesn't have any obvious flaws.

How long does the token engineering process take?

  • It depends on the project and may range from 2 weeks to 5 months.

What is Berachain? 🐻 ⛓️ + Proof-of-Liquidity Explained


18 Mar 2024
What is Berachain? 🐻 ⛓️ + Proof-of-Liquidity Explained

Enter Berachain: a high-performance, EVM-compatible blockchain that is set to redefine the landscape of decentralized applications (dApps) and blockchain services. Built on the innovative Proof-of-Liquidity consensus and leveraging the robust Polaris framework alongside the CometBFT consensus engine, Berachain is poised to offer an unprecedented blend of efficiency, security, and user-centric benefits. Let's dive into what makes it a groundbreaking development in the blockchain ecosystem.

What is Berachain?


Berachain is an EVM-compatible Layer 1 (L1) blockchain that stands out through its adoption of the Proof-of-Liquidity (PoL) consensus mechanism. Designed to address the critical challenges faced by decentralized networks. It introduces a cutting-edge approach to blockchain governance and operations.

Key Features

  • High-performance Capabilities. Berachain is engineered for speed and scalability, catering to the growing demand for efficient blockchain solutions.
  • EVM Compatibility. It supports all Ethereum tooling, operations, and smart contract languages, making it a seamless transition for developers and projects from the Ethereum ecosystem.
  • Proof-of-Liquidity.This novel consensus mechanism focuses on building liquidity, decentralizing stake, and aligning the interests of validators and protocol developers.


EVM-Compatible vs EVM-Equivalent


EVM compatibility means a blockchain can interact with Ethereum's ecosystem to some extent. It can interact supporting its smart contracts and tools but not replicating the entire EVM environment.


An EVM-equivalent blockchain, on the other hand, aims to fully replicate Ethereum's environment. It ensures complete compatibility and a smooth transition for developers and users alike.

Berachain's Position

Berachain can be considered an "EVM-equivalent-plus" blockchain. It supports all Ethereum operations, tooling, and additional functionalities that optimize for its unique Proof-of-Liquidity and abstracted use cases.

Berachain Modular First Approach

At the heart of Berachain's development philosophy is the Polaris EVM framework. It's a testament to the blockchain's commitment to modularity and flexibility. This approach allows for the easy separation of the EVM runtime layer, ensuring that Berachain can adapt and evolve without compromising on performance or security.

Proof Of Liquidity Overview

High-Level Model Objectives

  • Systemically Build Liquidity. By enhancing trading efficiency, price stability, and network growth, Berachain aims to foster a thriving ecosystem of decentralized applications.
  • Solve Stake Centralization. The PoL consensus works to distribute stake more evenly across the network, preventing monopolization and ensuring a decentralized, secure blockchain.
  • Align Protocols and Validators. Berachain encourages a symbiotic relationship between validators and the broader protocol ecosystem.

Proof-of-Liquidity vs Proof-of-Stake

Unlike traditional Proof of Stake (PoS), which often leads to stake centralization and reduced liquidity, Proof of Liquidity (PoL) introduces mechanisms to incentivize liquidity provision and ensure a fairer, more decentralized network. Berachain separates the governance token (BGT) from the chain's gas token (BERA) and incentives liquidity through BEX pools. Berachain's PoL aims to overcome the limitations of PoS, fostering a more secure and user-centric blockchain.

Berachain EVM and Modular Approach

Polaris EVM

Polaris EVM is the cornerstone of Berachain's EVM compatibility, offering developers an enhanced environment for smart contract execution that includes stateful precompiles and custom modules. This framework ensures that Berachain not only meets but exceeds the capabilities of the traditional Ethereum Virtual Machine.


The CometBFT consensus engine underpins Berachain's network, providing a secure and efficient mechanism for transaction verification and block production. By leveraging the principles of Byzantine fault tolerance (BFT), CometBFT ensures the integrity and resilience of the Berachain blockchain.


Berachain represents a significant leap forward in blockchain technology, combining the best of Ethereum's ecosystem with innovative consensus mechanisms and a modular development approach. As the blockchain landscape continues to evolve, Berachain stands out as a promising platform for developers, users, and validators alike, offering a scalable, efficient, and inclusive environment for decentralized applications and services.


For those interested in exploring further, a wealth of resources is available, including the Berachain documentation, GitHub repository, and community forums. It offers a compelling vision for the future of blockchain technology, marked by efficiency, security, and community-driven innovation.


How is Berachain different?

  • It integrates Proof-of-Liquidity to address stake centralization and enhance liquidity, setting it apart from other blockchains.

Is Berachain EVM-compatible?

  • Yes, it supports Ethereum's tooling and smart contract languages, facilitating easy migration of dApps.

Can it handle high transaction volumes?

  • Yes, thanks to the Polaris framework and CometBFT consensus engine, it's built for scalability and high throughput.