This Is How Blockchain Can Aid PM Modi's Smart City Dream
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One needs to develop an understanding of blockchain beyond BFSI and certainly beyond bitcoins for sure! Even the government has finally realized the potential of blockchain and is willing to explore areas where the technology can be implemented.
In fact, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley remained cautious about crypto in his budget speech though he agreed to the prospects of the technology. Soon after, Prime Minister Narendra Modi even supported the use of blockchain technology and the future it holds in the healthcare sector.
Blockchain can also lend a hand to Modi's smart cities mission, wherein the central government plans to sustainably develop 100 cities with world-class infrastructure and services by 2022.
A recent FICCI-PWC report listed out ten areas where blockchain can help the government in its smart cities mission:
Ease of Doing Business
A decentralized registry system can help the local government bodies with registration and other corporate-government related activities which will resolve issues faster and will lower the cost of doing business.
Additionally, the disturbed ledger system can also help the companies to develop an effective logistics and financial management solutions that can improve efficiency and transparency which will bring down the operating costs. Implementation of trade finance and logistics on a blockchain at the state/central level could be leveraged at the city level to realize benefits.
The technology can also help the local bodies to create a registry for the labor force, which will help the corporate houses verify their potential employee's past records. The solution can also help in developing a certification process for skill development in the city.
Blockchain can help the Election Commission (EC) with a decentralized voting platform to conduct local and legislative polls. These platforms can also help the authority achieve secure, anonymous and unique voting in a digitized manner.
Plus, blockchain can help the municipal or gram panchayat authorities to develop a digital public addressal management that allows citizens to provide feedback and raise a grievance on issues that matter to them.
The electronic health record system can help citizens in a big way as they do not have to manage multiple paper-based reports while healthcare practitioners can use the digital prints to verify the validity of these reports.
The decentralized registry can also help people verify the authenticity of the hospitals, pharmacies, testing centers or individual practitioners, which can help in decreasing medical-related frauds.
While on the other side, the technology regulators can monitor the usage of drugs and its abuse. Blockchain can also create transparent pharmaceutical supply chains, especially for critical drugs and organs.
Apart from the health related-services, smart contracts can help companies and individuals manage insurance claims and settlement process.
Blockchain can help the government mapping enrollment, change of institutions and dropouts among students. This will give them a holistic view of a child’s credentials.
The system will also help the government in the distribution of grants and scholarships to deserving students.
Additionally, people’s education record can be secured, verified and shared digitally, which together will help in doing away with the whole attestation process.
Cultural Identity Management
Blockchain can ensure grants for maintaining the city’s culture and identity is provided to right entity and used for the right purposes.
Additionally, a decentralized ticketing system will help the local bodies to sell tickets to a genuine visitor during events or shows, which will help them in regulating the black market to some extent.
Blockchain can help the local bodies to automate property registration and its related processes which will decrease the time consumed along with the cost of the process. Additionally, with the implementation of smart contracts, authorities like the housing boards can organize a fair and transparent auction/lottery of flat or plots.
Furthermore, the digital registry system can also be used to maintain civil registrations such as birth and death records, where the credentials to use it is with citizens and can be shared with other people with his or her’s consent.
Blockchain can help promote enforcement of real-time differential pricing models to regulate energy usage.
Additionally, blockchain-based renewable energy microgrids can be connected to the main grid through which communities can manage the supply and load as per their needs, while excess can be sold to the grid.
Blockchain can help the government to promote decentralized public transportation system and address first and last mile connectivity issues. Also, this will help the authority to develop the reputation management system for P2P vehicle users.
Another area where blockchain can help the RTO is with vehicle registry, where authorities can identify the age of the automobile and take adequate setups to keep unwanted motors off the street. The registry can also come in handy if combined with IoT (number plate recognition cameras) to issue challans to rule breakers.
Water, waste and pollution management
The technology, along with IoT solutions can help the authorities to understand the waste production and disbursal patterns, which will improve the efficiency of the process and develop advance waste management strategies.
Whereas on the another side, a blockchain can also help in creating a transparent system to track waste/air pollution emitted by the factories, and if there is a foul play, such system can help the government to take required action against them.
On the other side, smart contracts can automate water supply management over a grid, so that there are transparency and efficiency in the water distribution process.
A blockchain-based reputation management system for companies (that tracks emissions and records them on a blockchain network periodically) can help create an immutable source of truth that is verifiable and transparent. This transparency could drive more environmentally diligent practices from constituent companies.
With the help of blockchain, the investigating officers can avoid evidence tampering via cryptography and link it to a particular case.
This, in turn, will speed up the court cases and lessen the burden on law enforcement agencies.