Emirates News Agency – NYUAD, Ripple’s University Blockchain Research Initiative to prepare region’s next generation of economic leaders


ABU DHABI, 28th April, 2021 (WAM) — Leading blockchain technology provider Ripple’s University Blockchain Research Initiative (UBRI) has joined forces with its first-ever partner in the UAE and region, NYU Abu Dhabi (NYUAD).

The new partnership will see the establishment of a Ripple Blockchain Collaboratory at NYUAD, which will advance the role of new technologies, helping prepare the region’s next generation of finance and economic leaders, entrepreneurs, corporations, and other professionals to develop and apply technologies including blockchain, cryptocurrency, and cybersecurity, to their business practices.

The Ripple Blockchain Collaboratory will serve two main purposes. Research and project-based courses will advance faculty and student engagement in blockchain, cryptocurrency, cybersecurity, fintech, and related subjects.

It will also form part of the Corporate Sprint Accelerator Programme developed by startAD, the startup accelerator powered by Tamkeen and anchored at NYUAD, steering fintech and blockchain startups from around the world to launch and grow into the UAE market through pilot projects with innovative corporations.

Commenting on the announcement, Ramesh Jagannathan, Managing Director of startAD and Vice Provost for Entrepreneurship at NYUAD, said, “We are delighted to partner with Ripple’s UBRI on this ground-breaking initiative. Blockchain is the cornerstone of the digital transformation that will drive economic development in the decades to come.

“The global blockchain distributed ledger market size was valued at US$2.89 billion in 2019, and is projected to reach US$137.29 billion by 2027, growing at a CAGR of 62.7 percent from 2020 to 2027. NYUAD and startAD intend to be at the forefront of research and implementation of new technologies into real-world applications, spurred by visionary government initiatives such as the Emirates Blockchain Strategy 2021.”

Raša Karapandža, Visiting Professor of Economics at NYUAD, stated that the support from UBRI “will enable us to equip our faculty, students, and new businesses with the mindset required for creating the jobs of tomorrow by enriching our curriculum, supporting our students interested in blockchain, as well as advancing research initiatives on the topics of blockchain and cryptocurrencies.”

University Partnerships Director at Ripple, Lauren Weymouth, said, “Since launching UBRI, Ripple has seen tremendous growth from our global university partners to produce more than 280 blockchain-related research projects. We’re eager to partner with New York University Abu Dhabi to bring the initiative to the UAE and pilot innovation projects in a region ripe for fintech advancements.”

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