Lobos are invited to the next Lobo Living Room where UNM faculty and alumni will discuss cryptocurrencies, non-fungible tokens (NFTs), and their economic and environmental effects. The event will be held in-person and via Zoom, Wednesday, Aug. 17 at 6:30 p.m.

Featured panelists will include UNM Associate Professor Benjamin Jones, UNM Associate Professor Reilly White, and alum Kyle Guin. The group will discuss the blockchain basics, the current state of crypto-mite, NFTs, and the future of decentralized finance. The UNM Alumni Association will also provide graphs and figures showing the distribution of energy use and pollution emissions from crypto mining.

About The Speakers:

Benjamin A. Jones | UNM Associate Professor of Economics
Benjamin Jones is an associate professor of economics at UNM and is on the editorial council for the Journal of Environmental Economics & Management. Benjamin is also a UNM alum (Ph.D. in Economics, 2015). 


His research is in the area of environmental economics with a particular focus on the human health and economic implications of pollution exposure. This includes work estimating the economic damages of air and water pollution from particular sources or after natural disasters, environmental shocks, or other disruptions to ecosystem services. He has published more than 35 academic articles in leading environmental economics research journals.

Jones is the co-author of the 2020 paper: “Cryptodamages: Monetary Value Estimates of the Air Pollution and Human Health Impacts of Cryptocurrency Mining” that is published in the journal Energy Research & Social Science. His work on the environmental impacts of cryptocurrency mining has appeared in The New York Times, Popular Science Magazine, The Guardian, CBS News MoneyWatch, and on the BBC World News.

Reilly White | UNM Associate Dean
Reilly White is the associate dean of Teaching and Learning and an associate professor of finance with tenure at UNM. White also serves on the board of the CFA Society of New Mexico, advisor for the $4.7 million student-run UNM regent’s portfolio and leads a series of financial literacy projects in the community.


Prior to his career in academia, White worked as an analyst for a large Boston-based bank, where he learned a great deal about company analysis, funding, and maintaining ethical corporate leadership. He has consulted with investment managers and municipalities on maintaining optimal portfolio strategies, particularly in response to economic challenges.  

In addition to his doctorate from the University of Connecticut, White graduated summa cum laude from the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth with a degree in finance. White has published 19 articles in finance and financial technology in the last few years, including articles in "Physica A, Journal of Corporate Finance," "IEEE," "Technological Forecasting and Social Change," and the "Journal of Banking and Finance." With his students, he co-authored "Financial Literacy for Immigrants and Refugees," a free financial literacy handbook that has been translated into Spanish, Arabic, and Dari. Since 2020, White has been interviewed more than 150 times by local and national media outlets on various economic and finance topics.  

Kyle Guin | UNM Alum
Kyle Guin graduated from UNM in 2019 with a bachelor’s degree in Early Stage Business and Operations. At the graduation celebration, Guin was one of the speakers and was honored as the outstanding senior.


As an undergrad, he participated in UNM’s Innovation Strategy where he learned entrepreneurial strategies and began developing his own innovations. They included Pencil-In, a mobile calendar app, that resulted in Guin and his team being featured in a PBS NewsHour segment. Guin was also featured as the cover story in the spring 2019 issue of the UNM Mirage.

Guin continues to work on other start-ups and considers himself to be a technical business development specialist located in Albuquerque. His scope of activities includes the use of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) in the art world.

By attending, individuals understand and accept the risks associated with in-person events during a pandemic. Masks are optional in accordance with UNM policy. Capacity is limited to 80 people.