Cleveland Enlists Blockchain Research Institute to Drive Education and Business

Hundreds have signed up to learn how to use the technology for free and apply it to healthcare, business, banking and more.

by Emily Bamforth, Advance Ohio Media / December 19, 2018
Shutterstock/NicoElNino

(TNS) — Hundreds of Northeast Ohioans have signed up for access to the Blockchain Research Institute’s trove of blockchain research -- for free. You can, too.

The Blockchain Institute, headquartered in Toronto, Canada, is home to a multi-million dollar research program on blockchain technology. More than 70 research projects have produced a library of information about possible applications in health, business, banking and more.

Cleveland nonprofits and businesses worth than $1 billion can access them for free, thanks to support from the Greater Cleveland Partnership, JumpStart and the Unify Project. It’s part of an effort to transform Cleveland into Blockland, a hub for the blockchain industry.

Blockland is the brain child of car mogul Bernie Moreno, who this year led a group of Cleveland civic leaders to the Blockchain Institute to convince them of blockchain’s potential.

As of Monday, nearly 350 people have requested to access the research, which could inspire business owners, entrepreneurs and coders see the value in learning about the emerging technology.

"I think the key thing is (these case studies) put context around the technology,” Eric Ward, DriveIT’s chief learning officer, said.

DriveIT, a company which offers certificates and skills training in technology fields, used free access to the institute’s research to create two courses in advance of this year’s Blockland Solutions conference. One was for developers, the other was for people without an information technology background.

Interest in blockchain is high, said Ian Schwarber, chief strategy officer for DriveIT. The company added more sessions before the conference because initial offerings sold out.

What Schwarber didn’t expect was that the majority of interest came from people without a coding background who wanted to know the implications of blockchain for their businesses or creative ideas.

Perusing case studies to see what worked and what didn’t can save time and money, said Andrew Tasker, the founder and CEO of a digital business accelerator and incubator called Ecosystems of Innovation. He said the research has been so valuable that he would buy access if it wasn’t free.

One of the company’s clients is working on a database that would put together metastatic cancer research from around the world. The Blockchain Research Institute has researched blockchain’s potential for securing health databases.

“Things are accelerating so quickly in innovation and blockchain, we use the institutes research as what’s happening in the industry,” he said.

If you want to access to the research, click here to register through JumpStart.

©2018 Advance Ohio Media, Cleveland. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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