Ripple to fund Texas University blockchain unit

June 15, 2018
Chris Wheal

Ripple has pledged $2m to finance an initiative at the University of Texas at Austin, one of the first institutions to receive backing as part of Ripple’s $50m programme to fund research into blockchain.

The blockchain network announced its funding of research projects at 17 global universities last week, saying: “Academia has traditionally been a critical driver of technical innovation.”

Ripple funding university blockchain research projects: Pic by Shutterstock

“The University Blockchain Research Initiative is an acknowledgment of the vital importance of the unique role universities will play in advancing our understanding and application of cryptography and blockchain technology. It also speaks to the reality that university graduates will fuel a continually evolving and maturing financial marketplace and workforce.”

Ripple largesse

The University of Texas (UoT) is one of the first to benefit from Ripple’s largesse and its McCombs Business School will receive $2m in funding over the next five years.

McCombs gained some prominence in global blockchain and cryptocurrency circles earlier this week after it published a research paper that suggested bitcoin price manipulation.

Professor of Finance John Griffin led the research that claimed the dollar-backed crypto tether had been frequently used during the past year to manipulate the price of bitcoin at key moments – including when bitcoin reached its near-$20,000 peak in December.

Goals

On the McCombs website, the school says it has three main goals:

Supporting faculty and graduate students research on blockchain across colleges at the University of Texas at Austin

Teaching students the main concepts related to blockchain, cryptocurrency, and digital payments

To be the hub of knowledge for external relations with industry practitioners, policymakers, and media.

The school’s media exposure this week and its worthy aims must have impressed Ripple and it joins such luminaries as MIT, Princeton, Haas Business School at Berkeley and University College London in the funding project.

Post written by Chris Wheal
Chris Wheal is editor of OpenLedger's news and features service. An award-wining business journalists himself, he runs a team of freelance journalists from across the UK and north America.

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