The University of Texas at Austin will be the first beneficiary among academic institutions that will get a piece of the US$ 50 million funding pledge that Ripple made. The distributed ledger startup based in San Francisco pledged to fund blockchain research conducted by universities all over the world.
According to a news report in a Texan newspaper, the Austin based institution shall get US$ 2 million that will go to the McCombs School of Business. The said funds shall fund the school’s Blockchain Research Initiative for the next five years.
The University of Texas Joins Other Top World Schools
According to an earlier report, the Ripple fund shall bring together a total of 17 top university partners that include MIT, University of North Caroline, and Princeton as well as University College London and the Australian National University.
While the same report cited above indicated that a portion of the US$ 50 million had been allocated, it also points out that other schools involved in blockchain research are free to apply.
While announcing the fund, Eric van Miltenburg who is Ripple’s Senior Vice-President for Global Operations said that academia is traditionally the primary ingredient in technical innovation.
Eric added that by funding the University Blockchain Research Initiative (UBRI), Ripple acknowledges the vital role that universities play in advancing the humankind’s understanding of the applications of the blockchain technology and cryptography.
University Yet to Draw a Plan
The university expressed gratitude for the generous funding but admits it is yet to draft a firm plan explaining how it shall utilize the funding from Ripple. According to Cesare Fracassi, McCombs associate professor of finance who also heads the Blockchain program, “McCombs School of Business is yet to chart a firm plan on how to use the funds.”
Cesare, however, hinted that the school would call for proposals later in 2018 where projects undertaken by both graduate students and members of the faculty may qualify for funding from Ripple.
The professor also noted that other departments of the university are free to express their interest adding that “the business school and other branches such as the medical school that had expressed interest in blockchain research can participate.” Cesare’s move is in line with Ripple’s aspirations that allows schools to choose their research parameters. The startup, however, offers technical expertise.
Considerably Young Initiative
Though a recipient of Ripple’s UBRI, McComb’s blockchain initiative is substantially young; it started back in April 2018 when the school organized a blockchain event cum conference that was attended by some 300 guests.
Players in the industry hope that the contribution made by Ripple shall help increase blockchain-related academic courses and research in universities and colleges.