Blockchain Hackathon

The two day event will see technical teams presented with Public Service business problems to be solved using blockchain technology

Dublin, Ireland — 24 January, 2019 Blockathon Ireland, a hackathon hosted by The Department of Public Expenditure and Reform in association with The Department of Finance, aims to identify and analyse potential real-life use-cases of Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT), namely blockchain, in public services.

The hackathon will see potential business problems provided in advance to technical teams, ranging from medical device tracking in the HSE, to verifying CSO data and tracking State Aid for Enterprise Ireland. The teams will brainstorm blockchain-based solutions while vying for a portion of the €8,500 prize fund, awarded to the best outcomes. Solutions will be judged on four main criteria: Innovation, Relevance, Solution, and Proof-Of-Concept.

The goal of the event is to develop a deeper understanding of what potential blockchain technology has to be utilised in public services to improve current processes, development, citizen user experience, efficiency and more. Expert stakeholders have been sourced from the growing blockchain community in Ireland to judge and mentor the participating teams, in order to promote cross-functional collaboration between Government, academia, and the private sector.

Minister for Finance and Public Expenditure and Reform, Paschal Donohoe TD, said, ‘Blockchain technologies have proposed new economic, business, social and technological models that have the potential to significantly impact business and society. As part of Our Public Service 2020, our Government has pledged to drive innovation in policy design and service delivery, as well as promote a culture of innovation across our public service. We believe this can partially be achieved through the use of novel and alternative mechanisms, new platforms and unusual channels. Consulting and engaging experts on innovation from across the public sector, academia and the private sector to share ideas is a valuable action under the strategy, and this hackathon offers an opportunity to do so.’

This event follows the work undertaken by the intradepartmental working group on blockchain and virtual currencies launched by Minister Donohoe in March 2018. Hosted in The Innovation Academy, 3 Foster Place, Temple Bar, Dublin 2, more than 10 technical teams will take part in the hackathon. Kicking off the event, a welcome drinks reception will take place on Friday 25th January, followed by the hackathon on Saturday where breakfast, lunch and dinner will be provided. Concluding on Sunday 27th, the teams will present their solutions, followed by an awards ceremony.

Minister of State with special responsibility for Public Procurement, Open Government and eGovernment, Patrick O’Donovan TD said, ‘A joint effort by both Departments and representative of the ambition of the Government as a whole, Blockathon Ireland offers a unique opportunity to explore the potential for blockchain. Minister Donohoe and I welcome the opportunity to offer a platform for constructive collaboration with the aim of exploring the capabilities of disruptive technologies in public services.’

For more information:

Media Contact:
Press Office, Department of Public Expenditure and Reform
Tel: 01 676 7571
Email: [email protected]

Press Office, Department of Finance
Tel: 01 676 0336
Email: [email protected]

About the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform:
The Department of Public Expenditure and Reform is led by the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, Paschal Donohoe TD, supported by Minister of State with special responsibility for Public Procurement, Open Government and eGovernment, Patrick O’Donovan TD. The goal of the Department is to serve the country, its people and the Government by delivering well-managed and well-targeted public spending, through modernised, effective and accountable public services.

About the Department of Finance:
The Department of Finance is led by the Minister for Finance, Paschal Donohoe TD, supported by Minister of State with special responsibility for Financial Services and Insurance, Michael D’Arcy TD. The Department of Finance manages the Government finances and plays a central role in the achievement of the Government’s economic and social goals having regard to the Programme for a Partnership Government. In this way the Department plays a leadership role in the improvement of the standards of living of all Irish citizens.

image by Shutterstock

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