Ripple, the blockchain-powered payment network, has recently announced that it will donate $50 million to a series of universities around the world. This is reportedly in a bid to increase blockchain awareness and adoption. The universities are high-profile ones, and this initiative comes as interest in blockchain technology is already skyrocketing, as established actors who have previously been resisting blockchain technology now are starting to look into it as well.
This donation project has been dubbed the University Blockchain Research Initiative (UBRI), and the $50 million donated will go to 17 different universities. Most notably, MIT, Princeton University, University of Pennsylvania and University College London are the most widely recognized amongst those receiving funds from Ripple – however, the donations will go to universities spread out all across the world, and reach actors such as the Institute of Technology in Bombay, the Australian National University College of the Law, Fundação Getulio Vargas in Brazil, Korea University and the Canadian University of Waterloo.
Ripple has stated that UBRI is intended to further both the technical development of blockchain as well as academic research pertaining to the area. The donations will also be made in fiat US dollars rather than in cryptocurrency. Ripple also made a note of how this initiative comes as blockchain adoption and interest are already accelerating rapidly. This is most evident through how established companies and organizations are now looking into blockchain-related investment ventures. For example, the Rockefeller family, the epitome of “old money”, is reportedly looking into investing in blockchain-based projects.
The timing from Ripple’s part also seems to be spot on, as other educational facilities are already embracing blockchain technologies as an integral part of their educational program. Both Wharton and Stanford have increased their educational offerings in order to include classes on both Bitcoin and the blockchain. The 17 universities set to receive grants from Ripple are therefore seemingly at the forefront of the technical evolution.
Introducing students and academics as a whole to the capabilities and possibilities of the blockchain is becoming increasingly important, as blockchain adoption is already increasing. It would, therefore, make a lot of sense for Ripple to target this $50 million dollar donation towards students. It should also be noted that this is only the latest in Ripple’s series of investments, as the company recently invested $25 million in the $150 million dollar fund from Blockchain Capital Parallel IV.
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