Blockchain Explained: What You Need To Know
This is how the technology works and why you should care.
AUGUST 3, 2017
As emerging technologies continue to revolutionise the way we live and transact, concepts like ‘cryptocurrency’ and ‘blockchain’ are becoming increasingly relevant to our collective financial future.
Major banks are already talking about and beginning to use blockchain, a technology that could drive the digital transactions of the future. And it’s become a major buzzword in financial circles around the world for its potential to change the exchange of value as we currently know it.
While the technology itself is in the very early stages of existence and is complicated to understand, businesses and entrepreneurs around the globe are looking at ways to effectively use it in the belief that blockchain could be the next big worldwide innovation.
So what exactly is blockchain technology and why is it important?
As Grantly Mailes, the CEO of Civic Ledger, a company that uses blockchain systems to solve public sector problems, told HuffPost Australia the entire process happens via a peer-to-peer app or a website accessible with an Internet connection and is as easy as pressing a few buttons.
Australia’s blockchain adoption at tipping point
Although blockchain is no silver bullet, experts say Australian organisations should embrace and invest in the technology.
Blockchain, or distributed ledgers, could deliver much-needed productivity benefits and drive innovation across Australia, but the nation’s leading research agency has warned that it is no silver bullet and the road ahead will be bumpy.
In the public sector, the city of Melbourne is testing the use of blockchain with Australian startup Civic Ledger to allow citizens to trade parking entitlements. New South Wales is also considering how blockchain could be used to manage land title transfers, or to boost consumer protection.
Blockchain’s new coming of age
In a week when Bitcoin broke through the $US2,000 barrier, news emerged that a pallet of Coonawarra wine had completed its 8,100 kilometer journey to China’s Qingdao with its provenance proved by blockchain every step of the way.
Victor Jiang, founding partner of Sapien Ventures and chairman of Civic Ledger, which develops blockchain based solutions for public sector applications, said that the company had been working on a pilot with the City of Melbourne that would use blockchain to allow people to trade parking entitlements.
Civic Ledger has developed a blockchain platform exchange for government services that allows government issued certificates to be issued and tracked through a single consensus database.
National competition yields innovative solutions to water market issues
28 April 2017
The challenge was this: can you provide a technical solution to improve the transparency and reliability of information about Australia’s water market?
According to a new Federal Government initiative, Aither, Civic Ledger, NGIS Australia and The Marsden Jacob Unit Trust are on the right track.
They were among dozens of applicants for the latest round of funding from the Business Research and Innovation Initiative (BRII), and each successfully secured between $80,000 and $100,000 to develop their solutions further.
Feds funding water market transparency solutions
The Federal government is providing nearly $400,000 to encourage the development of innovative solutions to improve transparency and reliability of water market information.
Four firms, Aither, Civic Ledger, NGIS and the Marsden Jacob Unit Trust have been given grants, ranging from $80,000 to nearly $100,000, under the Business Research and Innovation Initiative (BRII).
Federal Industry, Innovation and Science minister Arthur Sinodinis said the latest round of the BRII aimed to encourage small to medium enterprises (SMEs) to create new products and services in five areas, identified by the government.
“SMEs with the most promising ideas and products arising from these 20 initial grants may be eligible for a further grant of up to $1 million each,” Mr Sinodinis said.
“This would be to develop a prototype, or proof of concept, of their solution with government having the option of being the first customer.”
Civic Ledger’s chief executive Grantly Mailes said the company aimed to bring transparency and confidence into Murray-Darling Basin water markets.
“The Australian water market is highly complex with four state registries and many brokers and exchanges,” Mr Mailes said.
“This complexity introduces lags and information asymmetry.
“If we can improve the transparency and reliability of water market information, we boost confidence in the market which will lead to increased participation and better use of this precious resource”.
Civic Ledger now a member of the Australian Digital Currency Commerce Association
22 March 2017
The Australian Digital Currency and Commerce Association (ADCCA) is the country’s leading council and representation of and for digital currency businesses along with other key industry participants.
Civic Ledger joins ADCCA as an industry member and takes its place alongside industry leaders including IBM, Optus, ASX, Australia Post, EY, PwC, Deloittes and the Local Government Association of Queensland to name but a few.
As Grantly Mailes, CEO, Civic Ledger explained, “our purpose is to use emerging technologies like blockchain and smart contracts to help public sector markets solve complex business process problems in the digital economy. We see that our solutions are applicable on a global scale.”
“ADCCA’s memorandums of cooperation with international counterparts, its extensive network and its mission to speak at a national and international level on behalf of the Australia’s leading digital currency and blockchain technology businesses, is of great interest to Civic Ledger and we look forward to a productive partnership.”
For more information about ADCCA and its latest news, click here.
Grants support the innovative ideas of small and medium businesses
14 March 2017
Today, Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science, Senator the Hon Arthur Sinodinos AO announced that 20 small and medium businesses will share in more than $1.8 million in initial funding to develop innovative solutions to solve public sector challenges under the Business Research and Innovation Initiative (BRII).
The Department of Industry, Innovation and Science received 180 applications for feasibility study grants.
Civic Ledger is one of the 20 small and medium businesses and will be undertaking a feasibility study to improve transparency and reliability of water market information by exploring the use of emerging technologies including blockchain and smart contracts.
Civic Ledger’s CEO and Co-Founder, Grantly Mailes, praised the Australian Government for investing in Australian start-ups like Civic Ledger to explore emerging technology like blockchain and smart contracts outside traditional finance systems.
A list of grant recipients can be found here.