CHAPEL HILL – The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is among 17 worldwide receiving part of a $50 million donation from Ripple, an Amsterdam-based crypto currency payment company, for the University Blockchain Research Initiative.

The program includes partnerships with leading universities globally to support academic research, technical development and innovation in blockchain, cryptocurrency and digital payments.

Each university will determine its own research topics and areas of focus. Ripple will provide technical support in addition to financial resources.

Eric van Miltenburg, senior vice president of global operations at Ripple said in a statement, “Academia has traditionally been a critical driver of technical innovation. The University Blockchain Research Initiative is an acknowledgment of the vital importance of the unique role universities will play in advancing our understanding and application of cryptography and blockchain technology. It also speaks to the reality that university graduates will fuel a continually evolving and maturing financial marketplace and workforce.”

Participating universities are:

  • The University of Pennsylvania
  • CSAIL at MIT
  • The Center for Information Technology Policy at Princeton University
  • Haas School of Business, University of California, Berkeley
  • University of Waterloo
  • UCL (University College London)
  • University of Oregon
  • The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Korea University
  • University of Luxembourg
  • Delft University of Technology (Netherlands)
  • University of Nicosia (Cyprus)
  • Australian National University
  • Fundação Getulio Vargas (Brazil)
  • McCombs School of Business, UT-Austin
  • IIT Bombay
  • International Institute of Information Technology, Hyderabad (IIIT-H)