CSIRO’s digital arm Data61 is collaborating with the treasury to investigate potential implications and productivity gains following the possible adoption of Blockchain within the nation.
The distributed ledger technology underpins the Bitcoin digital currency system and the nine-month long study will examine the potential impact upon the public and private sector.
The technology utilises algorithms to allow multiple, independent parties to share digital information or transact with one another, using distributed or shared ledgers. Such environments are typically not ‘owned’ or dominated by any one user, but still allow all parties to have confidence in the integrity of the shared content.
Data61 blockchain research team, Liming Zhu and Mark Staples, will head the investigation with additional input from Data61 foresighting team member, Stefan Hajkowicz.
Specifically, the investigation will provide practical use cases where the technology could be piloted in government services and the private sector and will explore potential legislative implications, like privacy.
According to Hajkowicz, there are currently a few potential projects that extend well beyond the financial industry such as sharable registry information, verifiable supply chains and assessment of aggregate risk exposure in the financial services sector.
“Deployment of such technology could be most promising in government delivery applications. Blockchain is certainly an example of a technology that has the potential to disrupt or change the way not only financial services transactions are carried out, but also those across virtually any other sector, including government,” he added.
“Data61 is extremely well-placed to play a lead role in this important work. We will be seeking to identify what the future will hold for blockchain in this country and the impact it is likely to have on Australia over the next two decades.”
Data61 chief executive, Adrian Turner, said “This study will provide the information we need to properly consider both the opportunities and the challenges posed by blockchain. This is a rapidly emerging area and now is definitely the right time to look at what it could mean for our economy.”