In an attempt to boost blockchain development in Wyoming, Input Output Hong Kong (IOHK), the company behind popular cryptocurrency Cardano (ADA), has made a hefty donation to the University of Wyoming’s (UW) Blockchain Research and Development Lab.
IOHK has donated $500,000 in ADA to the blockchain research and development lab in Laramie to support the promotion and development of innovative blockchain applications through smart contracts, where the university will work closely with the blockchain company.
Professor Borowczak, one of the researchers who’ll be leading the project, said:
“This funding is meant to directly stimulate and develop a highly qualified workforce in the blockchain sector. Student researchers from undergraduate and graduate levels are at the core of this initiative. Our research and development lab focuses on grounding all work in theory, while developing real-world products.”
IOHK is known for its innovative and detailed approach towards the development of Cardano and is also committed to open-source software development. The latest partnership with the University of Wyoming (UW) is a result of such principles. 2020 is expected to be a major year for Cardano especially with the Shelly era set to make the project the most decentralized project in this space. The research conducted by the university could be highly beneficial for future development.
The Advanced Blockchain Research and Development Lab would be led by Professor James Caldwell, Assistant Professor Mike Borowczak and Philip Schlump. According to Professor Caldwell, IOHK’s donation would allow researching practical use cases of blockchain-like, supply chain management, tracking the provenance of goods and the advancement of smart contracts. He said:
“Our group of researchers will work on a number of projects related to advanced smart-contract development, hardware design and verification for cryptographically secure authentication devices.”
Wyoming’s blockchain-friendly stance boosting business
IOHK moved from Hong Kong to Wyoming back in 2019 and the reason behind the move was pretty solid. Wyoming is one of the upcoming blockchain hotspots in the world. The state has been home to multiple blockchain companies like BeefChain and SheepChain.
Wyoming passed two house bills in early 2019 to create a regulatory framework to boost cryptocurrency and blockchain reform in the state. The move followed the Wyoming task force drafting a bill to define digital currencies as legal forms of money. Soon after, Wyoming developed rules for “blockchain banks,” which discussed cryptocurrency-focused features such as forks, airdrops, and staking.
Furthermore, the state passed another bill in 2019 that came into effect on March 1. The law classified digital assets into three categories: digital consumer assets, digital securities, and virtual currencies. The law further allows banks to provide custodial services for digital assets, making the ownership of cryptocurrencies both legal and equal in status to fiat currencies.
IOHK Founder, Charles Hoskinson praised the state’s blockchain-friendly environment and stated that this was another reason why IOHK invested in the University of Wyoming. Hoskinson said:
“The Wyoming Blockchain Taskforce’s supportive business environment and the excellence of the University of Wyoming’s science research is what led IOHK to choose to invest here. We are incorporated here as a business and are very happy to play a small part in helping embed Wyoming’s position at the global heart of blockchain-based innovation.”
Wyoming’s crypto friendliness, however, is not on the same page with that of the U.S. government. The US is still in the mist regarding cryptocurrencies and the regulatory uncertainty has made it really difficult to exist. The Securities and Exchange Commission continues to crack down on crypto projects as the past few years have seen increased SEC attention