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  • IIIT—Hyderabad, one of the 17 prestigious Universities around the world and one of the two from India, chosen as Global Partners of Ripple’s University Blockchain Research Initiative

    Published on June 4, 2018

    Hyderabad:  International Institute of Information Technology (IIIT-Hyderabad) is one of two from India to be chosen by American payment technology company Ripple for its University Blockchain Research Initiative. The American technology company is partnering with 17 prestigious universities around the world to help shape the workforce of the future.

    Ripple’s University Blockchain Research Initiative (UBRI) is a program comprised of collaborative partnerships with leading universities globally to support academic research, technical development and innovation in blockchain, cryptocurrency and digital payments.

    UBRI is launching with 17 initial partners. In addition to IIIT-Hyderabad, the list includes:

    Australian National University; Delft University of Technology (Netherlands) ; Fundação GetulioVargas (Brazil); Haas School of Business, Berkeley; IIT Bombay; Korea University; McCombs School of Business, UT-Austin; Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT); Princeton  ; University College, London; University of Luxembourg; University of Nicosia (Cyprus); University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; University of Oregon; University of Pennsylvania and University of Waterloo

    Each university will determine its own research topics and areas of focus. In addition to providing a multi-year, multi-million dollar commitment, Ripple will collaborate with universities by providing subject matter expertise and technical resources, as needed.

    The initial launch partners represent a broad cross section of geographies and markets, as well as a rich blend of academic disciplines. In addition, Ripple is committed to working with campus initiatives to increase diversity in blockchain, cryptocurrency, FinTech and related fields.

    Speaking on this partnership, Prof P J Narayanan, Director, IIIT-Hyderabad said, “It’s gratifying to see IIIT-H’s research work being recognized through the UBRI, alongside some of the best universities in the world. We have always valued theoretical and applied research as well as industry connect from the very beginning. This program enables both and we are looking forward to contributing to the blockchain area”.

    As globalization increases, so does the demand for technological solutions and talent to solve the world’s hardest financial problems. A report from 2017 showed that global investment in FinTech companies grew by 11 percent. In addition, 4,500 job openings with the terms “blockchain,” “bitcoin” or “cryptocurrency” in the title were posted on LinkedIn this year. That’s an increase of 151% over the total LinkedIn postings mentioning those terms in 2017.

    “Academia has traditionally been a critical driver of technical innovation. The University Blockchain Research Initiative is an acknowledgment of the vital importance of the unique role universities will play in advancing our understanding and application of cryptography and blockchain technology.  It also speaks to the reality that university graduates will fuel a continually evolving and maturing financial marketplace and workforce,” said Eric van Miltenburg, SVP of Global Operations at Ripple. “Much of the enthusiasm and activity to date around blockchain is disconnected from real use cases that result in clear benefits to businesses or civil society. While Ripple won’t dictate research parameters, we are excited to play a role in helping to support faculty and student-led projects that explore increasingly useful applications of blockchain and cryptocurrencies.”

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