2019 marked a new stage of development for Infrachain with significant impact on 2020 and far beyond, as the audience of its New Year’s meeting learnt on January 16th, 2020. The non-profit organisation created in 2017 as a Digital Luxembourg initiative secured its first operational project funded by the EU Horizon 2020 programme. As part of a larger consortium comprising 11 entities from different EU member States, Infrachain will participate in a project called TOKEN. The project kicks off this January.
TOKEN is an acronym for “Transformative Impact Of BlocKchain tEchnologies iN Public Services”. The project aims at developing an experimental ecosystem to enable the adoption of Distributed Ledger Technologies (DLT) as a driver for the transformation of public services towards an open and collaborative government approach. TOKEN focuses on four highly replicable application areas that are common to many Public Governments across Europe: public funding distribution; management of public accounts; urban logistics; valorisation of data. The total funding allocated to TOKEN is EUR 3,78 mio.
The TOKEN consortium comprises IT developers, research and technology organisations, blockchain associations, public administrations, SSH experts in public management and think tanks from Germany, Belgium, Denmark, Greece, Finland, Luxembourg, Spain and Poland.
Infrachain’s responsibility within the project mainly lies with the definition of governance rules, the establishment of plan for exploitation and dissemination and the activation of early adopters.
Infrachain will engage in TOKEN with the help of some of its members: itrust consulting, KYC3, LIST, Net Service, Scorechain and the University of Luxembourg’s SnT, as well as EY, InTech, and The Blockchain Academy®. Each of them will contribute their blockchain specific knowledge and skills throughout the 3-years duration of the project.
Fabrice Croiseaux, chairman of the Board of Infrachain, commented: “We are proud to be part of the winning consortium. Infrachain was launched in 2017. Today, our efforts pay off and with this project we gain recognition on an international level.” Earlier in 2019, the OECD had already noted in its Economic Survey of Luxembourg that Infrachain “bridges the gap between [blockchain] and the regulators, and positions Luxembourg as a competence centre in Europe.”
TOKEN is the 2nd major operational project in which Infrachain engages. The association was also chosen by the Ministry for Digitalisation to create the governance rules for the public sector blockchain.
Fabrice Croiseaux: “2019 marked a turning point for blockchain and distributed ledger technologies. The market became more mature with the focus shifting from cryptocurrencies to stablecoins and business applications. The public sector is an important driver for the adoption of new technologies. TOKEN and Luxembourg’s public sector blockchain are key initiatives to embrace blockchain and DLTs on a larger scale.”
Furthermore, Infrachain strengthened its international dimension in October last year with the successful organization of the first international edition of its Infrachain Summit in Bologna, Italy – an event for which the association benefitted of the support of the Emilia Romagna region and its local member Net Service. “Bologna is particularly known for its University and its High Performance Computing Centre. The Emilia Romagna region is very rich in industry, including car manufacturers. We discovered lots of exciting blockchain use cases and there are many complementarities and synergies to be explored”, said Tom Kettels, the Infrachain Operational Lead.
Complementarities and synergies are also at the heart of the blockchain hub of excellence announced in December by Infrachain, LëtzBlock, LHoFT, LIST and the University of Luxembourg’s SnT. The partners seek to combine the expertise and research capabilities of academia with strong industrial leadership.
The Infrachain chairman concluded: “In 2020, Infrachain will focus on three priorities: the work on TOKEN, the support of the public sector blockchain and the set-up of the blockchain hub of excellence.”