Japanese university to use blockchain for verifying academic records

Blockchain in Japan finds a new purpose as the Muroran Institute of Technology joins forces with Nippon Telegraph and Telephone West to use blockchain for verifying academic records.

According to the local news media on 3rd December 2019, Japan’s top university, located in Hokkaido, has announced the teaming up with Nippon Telegraph and Telephone West to keep track of educational records as storing and managing these documents becomes increasingly tricky with universities merging and a large number of workforce opting to return to colleges for further education. The service is slated to roll out by the end of March 2020.

Use blockchain for data management

Blockchain is a digital ledger in which information is stacked together in the form of blocks. Due to its immutability and decentralization, it has found a myriad of uses in industries where data storage and management is a challenge. The Nippon Telegraph and Telephone offers the blockchain platform using which university students can secure degree certificates from convenience stores. Reportedly, the proclaimed Japanese university will develop the blockchain solution, in collaboration with another software firm BarnardSoft, based on the existing service.

While Muroran Institute of Technology will contribute its blockchain to know-how and expertise to this joint research, NTT West will bring its years of experience in certificate issuance services to the table. 

According to the official press release dated 2nd December 2019, the initiative will not only assist in quick background checks involving academic records but will also serve as a self-certification platform using which students can quickly get hold of digitized versions of university degrees, regardless of location.

According to a professor at the Muroran Institute, the system is expected to expand its services to five more universities by the end of next year. Eventually, it would be used to verify employment history, qualifications, and reference checks in universities and offices.

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