The National Research Council (NRC) of Canada conducts a trial test on the ethereum blockchain in order to transparently publish data regarding government funding, grants and contributions.
On January 19, 2018, reports indicated that NRC is collaborating with Bitaccess to help the government publish administrative data in real-time to the open-source blockchain.
Prototype website accessible now
The idea behind the initiative is to attain transparency. By using the ethereum blockchain, all Canadian citizens will be able to audit government data any time they want. All information about a recent government grant and contribution will be added immediately.
According to the NRC announcement, the ethereum blockchain adoption is part of its Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP). The announcement says:
At this stage, NRC IRAP is using the Ethereum blockchain to proactively publish grants and contribution data in real-time, a measure that compliments ongoing quarterly proactive disclosures available through the Open Government website.
Moreover, Canadian users can already peruse the disclose government data by visiting the prototype website.
This prototype website has been made possible by Bitaccess’ Catena Blockchain Suite. It is s software suite that “allows public institutions to publish complex databases" into blockchains.
Bitaccess co-founder Moe Adham said:
“Our goal is to enable institutions to become fully transparent, and enable constituents to participate in the verification and validation of public information. We built the Catena Blockchain Suite as a simple, low risk, application for institutions to get introduced to blockchain technology. So far the reception has been terrific.”
How the NRC uses the Ethereum blockchain
Once a grant or contribution has been given to an organization or individual, the NRC will share that information with Bitaccess. Bitaccess will store the data in its secure and tamper-proof ethereum blockchain. The grant information will then be posted online which can be seen by all Canadians.
Canadians can then see the monetary value, date, recipient and region indicated in the grant information. Verifying the grant information is also possible. They just need to click the transaction ID link and it will take them to the unique transaction listing on the online ethereum transaction database called Etherscan.io.
As of January 20, 2018, the biggest grant that has been listed on the prototype website was an $11,849,901 contribution to one of Ryerson University’s research and development projects.