Blockchain verification and validation

Techniques, challenges, and research directions

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As blockchain technology is gaining popularity in industry and society, solutions for Verification and Validation (V&V) of blockchain-based software applications (BC-Apps) have started gaining equal attention. To ensure that BC-Apps are properly developed before deployment, it is paramount to apply systematic V&V to verify their functional and non-functional requirements. While existing research aims at addressing the challenges of engineering BC-Apps by providing testing techniques and tools, blockchain-based software development is still an emerging research discipline, and therefore, best practices and tools for the V&V of BC-Apps are not yet sufficiently developed. In this paper, we provide a comprehensive survey on V&V solutions for BC-Apps. Specifically, using a layered approach, we synthesize V&V tools and techniques addressing different components at various layers of the BC-App stack, as well as across the whole stack. Next, we provide a discussion on the challenges associated with BC-App V&V, and summarize a set of future research directions based on the challenges and gaps identified in existing research work. Our study aims to highlight the importance of BC-App V&V and pave the way for a disciplined, testable, and verifiable BC development.