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COVID-19

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Tamper-proof Vaccination Certificate

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COVID-19 Antibody Test/Vaccination Certification App

COVID-19 Blockchain Mobile App Infographic Click to expand image

As the Coronavirus Pandemic unfolds the OU’s blockchain team are working on a response centred on how our technology could support ‘Immunity Passports’ as have been mentioned by the UK Government in their daily briefings. This paper outlines our concept and prototype mobile phone app that facilitates the instant verification of tamper-proof test results whilst preserving privacy.

Publication

M. Eisenstadt, M. Ramachandran, N. Chowdhury, A. Third and J. Domingue, “COVID-19 Antibody Test / Vaccination Certification: There’s an app for that,” in IEEE Open Journal of Engineering in Medicine and Biology, DOI: 10.1109/OJEMB.2020.2999214

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We are now working with four companies to see how we will scale up our solution for UK wide deployment:

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BT

British Tele-communications PLC – A trusted brand with the ability to scale and deploy at national level

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Condatis

A trusted digital identity partner of some of the largest enterprises and government departments in the world

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Inrupt

Founded by John Bruce and Sir Tim Berners-Lee to rebalance power on the Web

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Royal Pharmaceutical Society

Our mission is to put pharmacy at the forefront of healthcare

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Fujihara lab., Chiba Institute of Technology

Researching how to apply blockchain to our society

Media

TEDxOpenUniversity

A Blockchain-based decentralised university – John Domingue

I believe that with blockchain technology we can create a radically new type of university: a DAO University. A DAO is a Decentralised Autonomous Organisation which operates with no central control and no humans in the loop and are based on Smart Contracts: pieces of computer code on a blockchain which can represent and enact financial and legal contracts.

In a DAO University value and reputation associated with teaching and learning would be accounted for through a blockchain with no central control. Instead the whole learning community would agree how the educational elements, for example, learning materials, teaching resources and teaching delivery are shared and recompensed.

A DAO University is a next step evolution in higher education. A born digital community owned educational institution for the 21st Century. This talk was given at TEDxOU on November 8th 2019 (https://www.tedxopenuniversity.com/).


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What are Blockchains?

Blockchain is most commonly known as the technology underpinning the Bitcoin cryptocurrency. But in recent years the open source code of the Bitcoin blockchain has been taken and extended by many groups to expand its capabilities. Blockchain technology, which can be thought of as a public distributed ledger, promises to revolutionise the financial world. A World Economic Forum survey in 2015 found that those polled believe that there will be a tipping point for the government use of blockchain by 2023. Governments, large banks, software vendors and companies involved in stock exchanges (especially the Nasdaq stock exchange) are investing heavily in the area. For example, the UK Government recently announced that it is investing £10M into blockchain research and Santander have identified 20-25 internal use cases for the technology and predict a reduction of banks’ infrastructure costs by up to £12.8 billion a year.

The reach of blockchain technology will go beyond the financial sector however, through the use of ‘smart contracts’ which allow business and legal agreements to be stored and executed online. For example, the startup company Tallysticks aims to use blockchain based smart contracts to automate invoicing. In October, 2015 Visa and DocuSign showcased a proof of concept demonstrating how smart contracts could be used to greatly speed up the processes involved in car rental – rental cars can be driven out of the car park without any need to fill in or sign forms. The ability to run smart contracts led Forbes to recently run an article comparing the future impact of blockchains to that of the Web and Internet.

We believe the blockchain technology and smart contracts can also be used in education in many interesting and potentially revolutionary scenarios. On this website you can see some of the ways we see the future of education developing using the blockchain and what we are doing to progress towards our vision.

Find out more about Blockchains
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Experiments with the Ethereum Blockchain

Ethereum is a platform for decentralised applications, built on top of a blockchain mechanism, which can be used for public data storage and computation. It acts as an immutable public ledger, which provides strong cryptographic guarantees for data integrity. One definitive feature of the Ethereum platform is the ability to execute Turing-complete Smart Contracts. A Smart Contract is a program on the blockchain. We have been investigating the possibilities that the Ethereum blockchain infrastructure affords.

Below you can see some screencasts of some of our other experiments with Ethereum:

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