Austrian Capital To Have New Blockchain Research Facility

The plan for the Austrian Blockchain Center or ABC has been been green-lighted by the COMET Centers, that works under the aegis of the FFG- an agency to promote research in the country. As per the recent press release, the new Center will be set up in the country’s capital city Vienna.

The plan for the ABC would include the inter-operations of and coordination between 54 companies, 21 scientific institutions, 16 international participants and 17 allied institutes. The research center will not limit itself to just one sphere, that is blockchain, but will also devoted time and resources to research in IoT (Internet of Things) technology, finance, blockchain in energy and logistics, like supply chain management and even applications in governance.

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Clearly, the decision to make this center a multidisciplinary one was motivated by a goal of making research more comprehensive and collaborative. The academic director as well as the center coordinator, Alfred Taudes stated that the multidisciplinary work will help them develop more thorough solutions and conduct research in greater depth. Taudes also heads the Research Institute for Cryptoeconomics at WU Vienna University of Economics and Business, and is clearly well-suited for his new role.

Major areas of research to be undertaken by the new blockchain research facility include:

a) applications of blockchain in business

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b) security and technological robustness through cryptographic mechanisms

c) role of blockchain technology in the manufacturing industry

d) emerging industries where blockchain technology may be adopted

e) politico-legal implications of the use blockchain

f) using data science to analyse blockchain data stores and make predictions on their basis.

This new institute is set to work in cooperation with all other facilities established under the COMET Centers. In addition, it will naturally work alongside other international projects and research initiatives surrounding blockchain. The funding for the facility and the COMET Centers in general comes from the country’s Ministry for Transport, Innovation and Technology. The Federal Ministry for Digital and Economic Affairs also serves as a patron for these. Two provinces, namely, Vorarlberg and Lower Austria will also be offering their support and assistance.

The government of Austria had long been rather supportive towards developments in blockchain technology. Earlier this year, in September, the Austrian government decided to offer a bond on the Ethereum blockchain, with the bond being worth around 1.35 million dollars. The fact that the country emphasizes heavily on fintech developments was made clear by the comment of Finance Minister Hartwig Loeger, when he said that the focus on blockchain was a means to strengthen their economic policy itself.

In November, the government also extended support to a British cancer research company that utilizes blockchain technology. Lancor Scientific, as the company is known as, wishes to set up a research center in Austria’s Graz, to develop a device to identify various kinds of the disease.