UK Government Wants to Tap Blockchain Technology to Track Government Spending

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UK Minister for the Cabinet Office Matt Hancock told the audience at a recent Blockchain event that the UK government could use distributed ledger technology to track student loans and aid money.

“We’re exploring the use of a Blockchain to manage the distribution of grants. Monitoring and controlling the use of grants is incredibly complex. A Blockchain, accessible to all the parties involved, might be a better way of solving that problem.”

“Bitcoin proved that distributed ledgers can be used to track currency as it is passed from one entity to another. Where else could we use that? Think about the Student Loans Company tracking money all the way from Treasury to a student’s bank account. Or the Department for International Development tracking money all the way to the aid organisation spending the money in country.”

Having been slow to adapt to the internet era, government must avoid making the same mistake with new emerging technologies such as the Blockchain, Hancock added.

“Now Blockchain technology is not going to solve every problem, or work in every context. When a trusted body already exists, for example, that can hold canonical data, that’s often the best solution. But the fact that data held in the Blockchain comes with its own history, and that history is a fundamental part of proving its integrity, this fact is enormously powerful.”

“These are just some of the ideas we’re considering in government. We’re still in the early days. That takes time, and a lot of careful thought.

And we want to hear from you. We’re relying on your brains to guide us, to help us take the next steps, and the right steps.

Today is all about Blockchain brainstorming.”

About Richard Kastelein

Founder of industry publication Blockchain News, partner at ICO services collective CryptoAsset Design Group (helped raise over $200m+), director of education company Blockchain Partners (Oracle Partner) and ICO event organiser at leading industry event  CryptoFinancing (first ICO event in Europe) - Richard Kastelein is an award-winning publisher, innovation executive and entrepreneur. He sits on the advisory boards of half a dozen Blockchain startups and has written over 1200 articles on Blockchain technology and startups at Blockchain News and has also published pioneering articles on ICOs in Harvard Business Review and Venturebeat.
 
Kastelein has spoken (keynotes & panels) on Blockchain technology in Amsterdam, Antwerp, Barcelona, Beijing, Brussels, Bucharest, Dubai, Eindhoven, Gdansk, Groningen, the Hague, Helsinki, London, Manchester, Minsk, Nairobi, Nanchang, San Mateo, Shanghai,Tel Aviv and Venice. His network is global and extensive.
 
He is a Canadian (Dutch/Irish/English/Métis) whose writing career has ranged from the Canadian Native Press (Arctic) to the Caribbean & Europe. He's written occasionally for Harvard Business Review, Wired, Venturebeat, The Guardian and Virgin.com and his work and ideas have been translated into Dutch, Greek, Polish, German and French.
 
A journalist by trade, an entrepreneur and adventurer at heart, Kastelein's professional career has ranged from political publishing to TV technology, boatbuilding to judging startups, skippering yachts to marketing and more as he's travelled for nearly 30 years as a Canadian expatriate living around the world.
 
In his 20s, he sailed around the world on small yachts and wrote a series of travel articles called, "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Seas' travelling by hitching rides on yachts (1989) in major travel and yachting publications. He currently lives in Groningen, Netherlands where he's raising three teenage daughters with his wife and sailing partner, Wieke Beenen.

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