Advisory and Innovation

The UCL CBT’s world-leading academic

expertise allows it to produce cutting-edge

Blockchain solutions for industry, start-ups

and regulators across a variety of sectors.

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Energy

Blockchain technology has the potential to create decentralised energy systems in which energy supply contracts are made directly between energy producers and energy consumers (without involving a third party intermediary) and carried out automatically.

Hence, Blockchain strengthens the market role of individual actors first, ultimately transforming the entire energy market.

Finance

The financial sector is by far where the most progress has been achieved for practical application of Blockchain technology.

Virtually instantaneous transactions and the abscence of third parties that comes with the technology have real disruptive implications for the financial industry, which today uses other processes to keep records for asset transfers and more.

Logistics and Transportation

Blockchain technology has the potential to disrupt logistics and transportation by reducing transaction fees and dramatically improving the speed of operations.

Blockchain enables data to move at the speed of business and allow company to gain deep visibility into their supply chain.

Insurance

Just like banks, insurance companies are intermediaries meaning that their business model is also about to be changed with the continuous rise of Blockchain technology.

And as customers increasingly expect a personalised value proposition, Blockchain appears to be the solution with more reliable and secure data, which is available more quickly and cheaply, while risk and fraud are reduced.

Healthcare

As the volume of patient data managed by hospitals, doctors and insurance companies increases each year, the need for ultra secure storage for health data as well for tracking personalised data in real time is more present than ever.

Blockchain appears to be the perfect candidate to solve these problems, while placing the patient at the centre of the health ecosystem and increasing privacy.

Media

Content management, easy monetisation and copyright protection.

Direct distribution of royalties to artists

Automatically identify rights and right’s owners by connecting content creators and consumers directly with blockchain, which reduces distribution costs by 90%. Direct and fair compensation to authors, without payment, transfer or agency fees.

Example

The likes of UJO Music have used Blockchain technology to directly distribute royalties to artists from consumers’ music purchases and in so doing have seen artists no longer lose up to 86% of their revenue as is typical through conventional streams.

Lower distribution costs

Simple payment system and clear provenance result in easier manageability of large amounts of content, which means media companies can focus on quality of products.

Complete protection of digital content

Against piracy and illegal distribution of content, which is a major cause of digital products devaluation.

Alternative revenue streams

Example

The likes of PeerTracks uses a token system underpinned by a Blockchain, where artists’ total tokens increase in value as their popularity increases. These tokens are exchangeable for their local currency.

Arts

Traceability, record history, complete transparency and copyright protection.

Ensure origin and authenticity

Record every event in the life cycle of an artwork to ensure origin and authenticity through a permanent, unique and indestructible digital fingerprint.

Reduce inspection and authentication costs

Reduce costs by 80%. Realistic applications in both digital and physical versions, as there are currently ideas using tagging technology.

Example

Chainmark: tagging a canvas with a unique fingerprint of mixed colours on the side, which can be translated into a digital hash.

Complete transparency

Concerning provenance and financial transactions. This solves the traditional problem of the last ‘unregulated’ market, which is transactions and agreements based on trust alone.

Telecommunications

Speed, reliability, security, privacy, reduced costs.

Drastically cut transactions costs

Compared to traditional debit and credit cards, particularly beneficial for micro-payments related to digital assets, such as music, mobile games, coupons, etc.

Increase security and efficiency

Of transmission of personal information, including EHR and financial details, through permissioned blockchains.

Reduce costs of implementation and maintenance

Hybrid blockchains with permissioned and public components can greatly reduce costs of implementation and maintenance of databases, as well as the physical space necessary.

Government

Security, transparency, inclusive public sector

Reliable system of voting

Reduce costs of infrastructure and managing staff during elections, as Blockchain can create a reliable system of voting, which ensures votes are unique and are also easier to control and review.

Increase efficiency

Increase efficiency of public services and functions, such as collection of taxes. Blockchain can remove the necessity for expensive infrastructure and lengthy bureaucracy, which would result in an inmediate, reliable and significantly cheaper process.

Registry of government-licensed assets

Help creation, maintenance and accessibility of a registry of government-licensed assets, such as houses and intellectual property.

Government documents to be audited confidentially

Blockchain allows for indefeasible timestamping of any piece of information and provides confirmation of that without revealing any of said piece of information.

Example

If emails between A and B were recorded on the Blockchain and A were to e-mail a confidential document to B at 18:00 before B receives that document at 18:01, an auditor would be able to verify that the email had been sent at such time and know that the proof is verified. The auditor would also be able to verify this without the contents of the email being revealed.

An improvement in the transparency and security of the administration of government grants, welfare support, and other similar payments

Transactions recorded on the Blockchain are secure from those who wish to frequently alter size of the funds distributed.

Example 1

The Department of Work and Pensions loses £1.2 billion per year through fraud. This sum could be significantly reduced if payment information was not copromised by verifying payment information.

Example 2

International Aid transactions recorded on the Blockchain can ensure any misappropriation of funds is recorded and is therefore easily traceable – Aid can be sent directly to citizens or organisations and in so doing reduce the costs associated with distributing payments via any intermediaries. Governments can also trace where the aid, once received, is spent.

An improvement in land registration

In the period between 2006 and 2015, the Land Registry paid out more than £54 Million in compensation for Property Fraud. With regard to the UK, in November 2015, there were more than 100,000 property transactions and in the financial year 2014-15, there were over 1.2 million residential property transactions with a value of over £40,000. Blockchain technology can speed up the process of registering a property transaction, verify the credentials of parties to a property transaction and verify the titles on a distributed ledger.

Example 1

ChromAway, having partnered with the Swedish Government to speed up the process of completing a property transaction, claims it is able to reduce the time from the conclusion of the binding contract to registration from around four months to a week.

Example 2

BitFury has partnered with the Georgian Government to provide land registration services. In his own words, the chief executive of BitFury outlined that powering the registry with blockchain will allow the public auditor to make a real-time audit. So, the auditor will audit the registry not once per year, but every 10 minutes [for example]. Third, it will reduce the friction in registration and the cost of property rights registration, because people could do this in the future using their smart phones. Blockchain will be used as a notary service.

Sensitive Government assets, such as weapons, to be controlled securely

Blockchain technology can protect sensitive assets, such as weapons of mass destruction or nuclear power plants, from illicit organisations that wish to use the assets for unauthorised purposes.

Example

The software which controls the new Hinckley Point nuclear power plant is vulnerable to similar attacks, through Stuxnet, to those suffered by the Iranian uranium enrichment facility at Natanz. Assets secured on a Blockchain are at a reduced risk of being subject to a change in control.

A reduction in the cost of protecting and improvement in verifying citizens' data

Blockchain technology allows for cheap and secure storage of sensitive data. Data secured on the blockchain can be free from tampering and is encrypted such that the data is not easily stolen.

Example

Estonia’s residency programme has shown the promise of maintaining an encrypted registry of citizens’ data. Though the system has allowed for trustworthy verification of its users, that the data is stored via conventional means makes e-residents’ data more susceptible to tampering or theft than would otherwise be the case if the data were secured with Blockchain technology.

Central Banks

True peer-to-peer transfers, direct control over creation and distribution. Traceability.

Reliable tracking

Easily, safely and reliably track transactions and movement of money in economy and remove costs of handling cash, including all payment and transactions fees.

Simplicity

Simplify cross-norder settlement transactions and overhaul antiquated back-office infrastructure.

Empowerment of central banks

Transfer more power from commercial to central banks and open new possibilities in countries where the banking system is underdevelped or absent, by creating a true peer-to-peer transactions systems without commercial banks.

Distribution of central bank issued digital currencies

With Blockchain technology, it is now technologically feasible for central banks to offer universal access to their balance sheet.

Example

Central banks may generate liquidity by financing through money creation and in so doing use private debt to create deposits before giving access to central bank issued digital currencies directly to investors in order to lower transaction costs. They may also simply hold the central bank issued digital currencies instead of deposits. This would mean there would be no borrowing spread necessary to generate liquidity, a control on the scarcity value of currency, and a greater technical efficiency (lower cost) of the currency.

Law

Transparency, enforceable smart contracts, IP rights management.

Automation of contract execution

Accelerate and simplify legal settlements in financial transactions, both domestic and international, while greatly reducing costs through auto enforceable smart contracts. Smart contracts provided for by Blockchain technology, can allow assets to automatically execute terms of a contract under certain conditions.

Example 1

Parametric insurance policies or insurance-linked securities have clear potential for efficiency gains through using Blockchain technology. By verifying on the Blockchain, for instance, that there is weather data showing flooding, a policy holder can instantly claim their crop insurance via a Smart Contract.

Example 2

A lessor of machinery can, via a Smart Contract, halt usage of a piece of machinery if they do not receive their payments without scope for fraud from the parties involved or from a third party.

An improvement in asset registration and verification

Create a publicly accessible, indisputable ledger of information, such as intellectual property rights and land registry.  In the period between 2006 and 2015, the Land Registry paid out more than £54 Million in compensation for Property Fraud. With regard to the UK, in November 2015, there were more than 100,000 property transactions and in the financial year 2014-15, there were over 1.2 million residential property transactions with a value of over £40,000. Blockchain technology can speed up the process of registering a property transaction, verify the credentials of parties to a property transaction and verify the titles on a distributed ledger.

Example 1

ChromAway, having partnered with the Swedish Government to speed up the process of completing a property transaction, claims it is able to reduce the time from the conclusion of the binding contract to registration from around four months to a week.

Example 2

BitFury has partnered with the Georgian Government to provide land registration services.

Example 3

Everledger is a permanent register for diamond certification and related transaction history. It provides verification for insurance companies, owners, claimants, and law enforcement. Per the company, £45 billion is lost annually in the US and Europe because of insurance fraud while £100 million is paid out annually in relation to jewellery theft.

Create transparent, clear and public digital platforms

Which are easier to regulate and monitor, as blocks cannot be modified.

Legal documents to be audited confidentially

Blockchain allows for indefeasible timestamping of any piece of information and provides confirmation of that without revealing any of said piece of information.

Example

If emails between A and B were recorded on the Blockchain and A were to e-mail a confidential document to B at 18:00 before B receives that document at 18:01, an auditor would be able to verify that the email had been sent at such a time and know that the proof is verified. The auditor would also be able to verify this without the contents of the email being revealed whatsoever.

Removal of the need for an escrow

Blockchain technology allows for trustless transactions. Lawyers will typically provide escrow services whilst parties are undergoing a lengthy transaction. Blockchain technology ensures that any value is only transferred at the appropriate time without the need for a third party to hold any assets for safekeeping.

Retail

Transparency, reliable payment system, direct communication and transactions

Increase transparency of goods sold

Blockchain will document information about goods, such as their origin, composition, manufacturing process, etc. and allow people in countries without a developed banking sector to access a reliable payment system.

Example

Tamper-proof label on restaurant dishes to ensure they are vegetarian or vegan.

Solve the issue of counterfeit products

Blockchain’s digital ledger record can solve the issue of counterfeit products in the market and help track movements of stolen goods, saving billions in the retail sector.

Supply chain management

Accelerate shipping process, while drastically reducing related costs; blockchain can create a peer-to-peer system between all the parties involved in the traditional supply chain, which would remove the middle-man and increase efficiency and trust.

Example 1

Logistics companies can use Blockchain technology to cheaply verify where a product is along a supply chain or in a delivery network

Example 2

The likes of Provenance use Blockchain technology to document the supply chain of materials, ingredients, and products to provide consumers with greater transparency about the products’ authenticity and origin.

Manufacturing

Privacy, security, efficiency

Permissioned platform for a project

Create a permissioned platform for a project, such that blueprints, information on parts and materials can be immediately and securely transferred and updated; share models which can be 3D printed by outsourced companies, while maintaining privacy and ownership rights.

Trace origin

Easily and immediately trace origin of materials and history of suppliers.

Monitor production process at no cost

Monitor production process at no cost, even in outsourced companies; blockchain could be used to ensure guidelines were followed during production.