The Bitcoin Masterclasses #6

The Bitcoin Masterclasses #6: ‘Remittance Revolution’ highlights

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nChain‘s sixth edition of The Bitcoin Masterclasses returned to London on June 21-22 with a theme of “Remittance Revolution: Exploring Micropayment Systems & Digital Currency for Empowering Migrant Workers.”

As always, this masterclass series aims to guide nChain employees on Dr. Wright’s vision while also educating a wider audience, thanks to a complimentary livestream via the CoinGeek YouTube channel. Dr. Wright chose the remittance and digital currency theme this time as it ties in nicely with the nChain Philippines projects, including building a central bank digital currency (CBDC).

“I’m a researcher at nChain, and I came to know emerging ideas from Craig,” shared Liuxuan Pan, a dedicated The Bitcoin Masterclasses attendee.

“I was impressed that every time when taking a masterclass, like last time, we talked about auditing models, and Craig said we can bring more transparency and then reduce the cost. This time we learned how micropayment systems could be used in the real world and for the government and how to bring more benefit from blockchain to the real world,” she shared.

Maria Eugenia “Huge” Lopez, Lead Product Designer at nChain, enjoys attending Dr. Wright’s masterclasses to better understand the longer-term vision for her organization and how it will change the world. She was able to relate to this masterclass in particular as she regularly sends money to her family in Argentina.

“I like the idea of thinking of a holistic solution for different problems that we need to achieve when it comes to very complex industries, for example, payments or financial and maybe personal finance and identity,” said Lopez.

“I think that really brings a series of values and principles that the company as a whole has every time that we come here, and it just reminds us that this is what we’re here for. It will really revolutionize the industry and how it works. And I think that’s the main purpose of this,” she added.

When asked why he chose a theme of remittance, CBDCs, and micropayments for this masterclass in particular, Dr. Wright elaborated on the ongoing projects nChain has going on in the Philippines.

“We are going to be presenting solutions with the Philippine government soon. We’ve got contracts with them, and having everyone understand the nature of how CBDCs work is important,” Dr. Wright explained.

“Part of what we need to do is build solutions that will keep governments happy in following their rules, and what many of the crypto heads do—and totally wrong—is they think they can dictate how things should be. A sovereign government like the Philippines, where it’s democratic and selected by the people in the Philippines, should select the rules in the Philippines,” he pointed out.

Dr. Wright went on to say that although it will take a few years to roll out these projects in the Philippines, we are talking about a quarter million people towards his goal of impacting 5 billion people with his invention of Bitcoin before he retires.

nChain’s Licensing Chief Science Officer, Dr. Owen Vaughan, elaborated on what he learned from the masterclass and how micropayments play into what he and his team are working on in the Philippines.

“I learnt that a big cost involving remittances comes from regulation and, in particular, things like KYC (Know Your Customer) checks. So we were talking about how linking identity more robustly with one or more wallets can really help reduce the friction in those KYC and AML (anti-money laundering) checks,” Vaughan shared.

“We also talked about how empowering women is one of the key drivers in lifting people out of poverty. So we had that use case in mind about maybe someone sending home a remittance to a mother who can then use it to spend on books for their children and things like that,” he said.

Vaughan’s examples tie into Dr. Wright’s vision of thinking about how to open things up and do things differently. Not isolating communities or operating in secrecy, but being able to move through any migrant corridor or any country to share and be open.

Jules Goddard, Technical Architect at nChain, was also in attendance and found great value in hearing Dr. Wright’s thoughts on how to build CBDCs.

“It’s always very interesting to listen to anything that Craig has to say on most topics. He’s got an opinion on most topics, so that’s very helpful. But the particular thing that I’m interested in today is CBDC,” he said.

“I did some work on a CBDC project for nChain last year, so I’d like to see how we’re going to push the boundaries on that, and we’ve got better solutions after Craig’s talk,” Goddard added.

“We need to have flexibility so that we can adapt and are able to fulfill the requirements of our various different governments that want to use CBDC, so we’re going to end up with a more flexible solution,” he revealed.

When it comes to CDBCs, Dr. Wright emphasized that we must build platforms that give identity solutions, logging solutions, and solutions that make the life of government officials easier because “that’s how they are actually going to care.”

“When we give them solutions that make them look better when we make the government able to provide services for the people in their community, we all win,” Dr. Wright concluded.

Watch: Peer-to-peer electronic cash system—that’s micropayments

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