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Columbia University, IBM set up new blockchain and data transparency research center

Columbia University, in collaboration with IBM, is setting up a new center dedicated to research, education, and innovation in blockchain technology and data transparency.

The Columbia-IBM Center for Blockchain and Data Transparency will bring together cross-disciplinary teams from the academic, scientific, business and government communities. It will focus on key issues related to the policy, trust, sharing and consumption of digital data when using blockchain and other privacy-preserving technologies.

The center will also include an innovation accelerator to incubate business ideas from entrepreneurial students, faculty and members of the startup community, according to the press release.

"With Columbia, we are able to bring together leading thinkers on applying blockchain and data best practices based on extensive research and business experience and together prepare a new generation of technologists and business leaders,” said Arvind Krishna, senior vice president of Hybrid Cloud and director of IBM Research.

The center will focus on conducting new research and accelerating scientific breakthroughs in the areas of data transparency and blockchain across industries and building technology capabilities that apply blockchain in new ways. In addition, it would also extend advice on emerging policy and regulation related to trusted blockchain and data transparency practices, explore ways to responsibly balance regulatory and data ownership issues with new data monetization models, and strengthen and expand professional skills in blockchain and data transparency through education and internships, among others.

IBM and Columbia University will also advance research in technologies such as secure multi-party computation, homomorphic encryption, secure hardware, fraud reduction, and improving precision medicine through insight from collective data sources.

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