Blockchain Research Hub to Rise in Stanford University

Blockchain Research Hub to Rise in Stanford University

Stanford University, one of the leading universities in the United States, is launching its own blockchain-oriented research hub. 

The Center for Blockchain Research, sponsored by a group of cryptocurrency startups and organizations, is seeking to come up with the best practices for blockchain by gathering the university’s scientists and the industry’s top leaders, the Stanford Engineering said in a statement. 

“In addition to research, center scientists are creating courses to help future students and working professionals use blockchain to develop financial instruments, protect intellectual property, manage vital records and more,” it added. 

Stanford University explained blockchain enables traceability, security, and transparency. Therefore, several companies are exploring how the technology can be used to improve supply chain management, fast-track real estate transactions and the transfer of deeds, or modernize voting technology, among others. 

“Blockchains will become increasingly critical to doing business globally. Stanford should be at the forefront of efforts to improve, apply and understand the many ripple effects of this technology,” Boneh said, a Rajeev Motwani Professor in the School of Engineering whose specialty includes cryptography and computer security.  

“Blockchain massively lowers the barriers to creating tradeable, digital assets. It allows individuals who don’t know each other, or even trust one another, to make irreversible transactions in a whole variety of fields in a safe and secure way,” Mazières said. 

It will be headed by professors Dan Boneh and David Mazières, experts in cryptocurrencies and blockchain. They will be joined by Alex Aiken, David Dill, John Mitchell, Tim Roughgarden and law school faculty Joe Grundfest. 

Sponsors include the Ethereum Foundation, Protocol Labs, and the Interchain Foundation. OmiseGO, DFINITY Stiftung, and Polychain Capital are supporting the planned research center as well. 

Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin, a co-founder of the Ethereum Foundation, announced the latest initiative in a Twitter post. 

The industry does not find this latest news surprising at all, given previous reports that such classes have attracted some American universities. 

Earlier, the University of California, Berkeley said it would start offering a three-month, online professional certificate program for blockchain. The two-part course, according to the university, would be focusing on cryptocurrencies and permissioned blockchains to equip their students for careers in developing the distributed ledger technology for businesses. 

Specifically, this would center on powering students with strong fundamental blockchain literacy and the basic knowledge needed to enter any type of technical and non-technical blockchain career, according to a report by 

UC Berkeley said about 7,400 students have already signed up for the program. 

“We’ve had other online courses that have done well, mainly STEM-related content… but I’d say this course’s early results show very impressive enrollments,” Suzanne Harrison, director of design and development at the university, said. 

This is the first time the UC Berkeley opened such a program to students from various parts of the globe through its online learning platform, and arguably, one of the first few universities to include blockchain in its course offerings worldwide.

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