The Power of Blockchain for Social Good: Kakao’s Blockchain Project ‘Klaytn’ Takes Initiatives To Drive Social Impact

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Ground X, the blockchain unit of the leading South Korean mobile platform, Kakao has successfully completed its first pilot that leverages blockchain technology to enable in-kind donations to be monitored and tracked from donors to beneficiaries.

Since the launch of the private testnet ‘Aspen‘ last October, the Ground X team has worked with numerous charities and non-profit organizations in Korea to use blockchain technology to generate meaningful social impact. In particular, the Korean NGOs including Good Neighbors, The Happiness Foundation, Guidestar Korea, and the Beautiful Foundation have cooperated with Ground X for identifying the pain points of charity donation processes in the current industry and discussing the promise and potential of blockchain to enhance social funding. They also supported Klaytn in identifying potential areas where blockchain technology could further be applied to help improve existing business flows.

Together with the nonprofit tech startup Prisming and the Happiness Foundation’s Happy Gift Box project, which delivers the donated goods to beneficiaries, Ground X has completed the first pilot project that leverages blockchain technology to enable in-kind donation to be recorded and tracked from donor to intermediary to beneficiary. The pilot service, developed by Prisming, utilizes Klaytn’s recently launched public testnet, Baobab, by employing both the local database and the distributed ledger function of blockchain technology. In order to maintain the privacy of the data including the prices of the donated goods, some data are recorded on the local DB only while the blockchain records the entire donation journey thereby driving a more transparent giving. The Happiness Foundation plans to integrate this pilot project with its current system by the end of 2019 to improve administrative efficiency with blockchain technology.

The second pilot, set to launch in May through a Korean mobile application service called Inconvenience Box as developed by Nitpick, rewards users for reporting ‘inconvenient’ moments or instances they experience in their daily lives. The incentivized users can then choose to use the received ‘Social Innovator Tokens,’ which are minted on the Klaytn platform, to buy products online or donate them. The Klaytn-powered Inconvenience Box, which can be downloaded for free, endeavors to make social funding to be more fun and easy and is specifically for today’s millennials.

Together with social ventures and development charities, Ground X plans to continue incubating and implementing blockchain-based solutions that can address the existing challenges in the industry. According to Dr. Jerome Lee, the Head of Ecosystem and Social Impact at Ground X, “Blockchain has the potential to become the solution to address the world’s pressing issues particularly in social and development sectors, and we seek to develop real use cases that utilize blockchain for generating positive social impact.” He further added, “We hope that Ground X can take the initiative to promote the power of blockchain in transforming social funding and charitable giving by enhancing transparency and enabling new mechanisms for tracking impact.”

Once the second pilot is over, the complete report and the source code will be made publicly available online at Ground X plans to enforce its ecosystem by expanding its community of developers and service providers.