Columbia University and IBM Establish New Center

Columbia University and IBM Establish New Center

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Columbia University and IBM announced a new Center devoted to research, education, and innovation in blockchain technology and data transparency.

To advance compelling new ways to apply blockchain and help address growing demands around data transparency, the Center will also include an innovation accelerator to incubate business ideas from entrepreneurial students, faculty and members of the startup community.

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

The collaboration will 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. This will spur the creation of new business models, services, and policies to support the sharing of data in a secure, privacy-preserving and tamper-proof manner.

The Center will draw on Columbia's academic strengths in data science, engineering, business and law, combined with IBM's extensive expertise in technology Research and Development. IBM also lends practical insights from blockchain product development and the implementation of blockchain projects with hundreds of enterprise clients globally.

The Center will be supported by a steering committee consisting of Columbia faculty and academic leaders and IBM Research scientists and business leaders. A formal call for proposals for curriculum development, business initiatives and research programs is scheduled for later this year. The creation of the Center is another important milestone in the 70-plus year history of collaboration between IBM and Columbia University.

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