UK University, Hong Kong Firm Announces Blockchain Research Center

“While blockchain is often associated with cryptocurrency systems today, numerous organizations have started exploring its applications in areas such as civil identity, with the concept of a shared, immutable ledger offering considerable potential for citizen database programs…”

UK University, Hong Kong Firm Announces Blockchain Research Center

A UK university has teamed up with a Hong Kong-based tech firm to explore the benefits of blockchain technology: Edinburgh Napier University and Blockpass have announced the Blockpass Identity Lab, which will be established on Edinburgh Napier’s Merchiston campus.

The research center will be a £600,000 investment, launching with an initial three-year collaboration between the organizations. It will entail the establishment of a virtual blockchain test environment, and will enlist the work of paid researchers and PhD students.

The Lab will be headed by Edinburgh Napier School of Computing professor Bill Buchanan, who expressed lofty ideals for the initiative in a statement announcing its launch. “The world is changing and cryptography is now being used to fix many of the problems we have created on the internet,” he said. “It can now help create a better society, with the citizen at its core.”

While blockchain is often associated with cryptocurrency systems today, numerous organizations have started exploring its applications in areas such as civil identity, with the concept of a shared, immutable ledger offering considerable potential for citizen database programs, including the possibility of confirming identities without the need to share substantial personal information. With respect to the latter, biometric identification is also being leveraged by a growing number of blockchain systems, using credentials such as fingerprints to match individuals against the ID information stored in the blockchain.

May 1, 2018 – by Alex Perala