Up-close & Personal: Sally Eaves at BITConME, Dubai Blockchain Summit 2018

In conversation with Sally Eaves at BITConME, 2018 in Dubai. The conversation highlight the social impact that Blockchain technology could bring about. Here’s how the conversation went:

What is the social impact that Blockchain technology could create in the future?

I think it’s all about opening up opportunities and blockchain isn’t specific to a sector so it goes far beyond Fintech. We can make real lasting and sustainable change in multiple sectors. Say for example, in education, in health care, in supply chain. I think we’ll see fantastic opportunities to make a difference in developing nations. So as an example, I’ve been looking at things like food supply chains and how we can support fair trade and ethical trade. Also, if you think about the farmer, how we can get his/her produce from farm to fork so that they are duly rewarded, and blockchain is a great way to make it happen and following that journey along, making sure that nothing gets taken away. If you think about donations, upon the implication of this technology you can make sure that these donations reach where they should and are not lost half way. So there are great opportunities to empower people, so much so that they really make a difference. There’s an awesome project in Nigeria that is rewarding engagement in school, so if there’s 90% attendance then some rewards are given to the family. So as you can see, there’s a ripple effect here that can really change lives and make a difference.

In healthcare & education, how can Blockchain technology be implanted on the grass-root level?

For healthcare an an example, there are already project looking at medical health records. At the moment we have got silos of information all separated from hospitals and GPs and community healthcare, and this technology is gonna help put these together. With Blockchain and AI integration we can get better opportunities to look at large volume of data and help inform people better results and give them better feedback, which can in turn help people make better life choices. So for example, Precision personalised medicine: we can upload your DNA using blockchain and share it with people with whom you’d like to share it. Therefore, we not only make money from doing so but also get info about your health and propensity for disease. There are new projects that are opening up new opportunities to find out more about your health and share information securely.

What are your thoughts on AI, ML and Blockchain technology coming together to bring about the 4th industrial revolution?

The key points of why these are so good together is that with Blockchain you’re getting aspects such as security, privacy and transparency of the data. With AI and ML you can really manage big chunks of data and build something personalised around it. SO the integration of these different technologies cam together form something powerful that is not sector specific.

Do you think that sharing of information could act as a hindrance?

We’re talking about creating an ecosystem. So healthcare for example, you have individual patients, pharmaceuticals, research companies, hospitals, all these can work together and you can decide who can access this data. So it’s giving you power to make better healthcare decisions; that’s where we’re moving to and also improving efficiency. For example, we’re trying to take out all the mundane tasks like filling forms for doctors and pay attention to patient care. Like in Radiology, we already have use cases where machines are taking care of the more normal tasks and only in very sensitive cases are we applying human intervention.