In a move that is bound to please Ethereum’s 23-year-old Russian-Canadian inventor Vitalik Buterin the Canadian government has launched a trial to explore the use of blockchain technology in making government research grant and funding information more transparent to the public.
For the trial, the National Research Council (NRC) is using the Catena Blockchain Suite, a Canadian-made product built on the Ethereum blockchain, to publish funding and grant information in real time.
When the NRC creates or amends a grant, the pertinent information is stored on the Ethereum blockchain, and posted on an online database that Canadians can peruse.
The NRC said in a blog post:
“Blockchains provide the ultimate in transparency and trust, making this technology a brave new world for organizations that strive to conduct transparent business. These are early days yet, but the experiment is expected to provide constructive insight into the potential for blockchain technology and how it may be used for more open and transparent function of public programs.”
NRC is using the Ethereum blockchain
Every time the NRC gives a grant to a company or individual, it shares that information with Bitaccess, which stores the data on the secure and tamper-proof Ethereum blockchain. Individual grant information is then posted online.
Canadians can peruse grant information by monetary value, date, recipient and region. They can also verify grant information by clicking on the Transaction ID link, which takes them to the unique transaction listing on the online Ethereum transaction database Etherscan.io.
At the time of writing, the biggest grant listed on the database was an $11,849,901 contribution to an industry R&D project at Ryerson University.