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Enrolment Race Pushes Business Schools to Update Crypto Curricula

Enrolment Race Pressures Business Schools to Update Crypto Curricula

Recent reports indicate that rather than course numbers dropping due to a market down, the numbers of potential new entrants into the cryptocurrency space from other sectors are swelling. With top blockchain developers in the US pulling down salaries above USD 250,000, it is hardly surprising that the recent cryptocurrency bear market has done little to deter those considering entering the industry.

For many, the main route into the burgeoning fintech space has now become via a growing range of courses being offered by major universities and business schools around the world.

Courses are now on offer from far and wide whether it be in the Scottish Highlands, Ivy League Cornell and Stanford in New England or in sunny Cyprus. For those wanting a cultural slant on life for a short period, Saint Petersburg’s State University of Economics and Moscow’s Institute of Physics and Technology (MIPT) also both run blockchain technology courses. However, there is already a waiting list.

Professor David Yermack from NYC Stern School of Business came early to the university’s MBA program for blockchain and cryptocurrency education. His class has already doubled over the past year and as a result, he has had to move his lectures to a larger auditorium to cater for the swelling numbers at Stern.

The prestigious New York University first established its School of Accounts and Finance in 1900; Stern is one of the oldest and most prestigious business schools in the world. It is also a founding member of the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.

A notable factor of the current surge to find a place on blockchain and cryptocurrency course is not the just amount of courses becoming available but the way in which some of the world’s most prestigious educational institutions have led the march towards fintech education. A recent Coinbase survey revealed that 42% of the world’s top 50 universities offer at least one course relating to blockchain or cryptocurrencies.

Some 22% of the universities offered more than one course, with Stanford listing ten classes and Cornell nine. The National University of Singapore ranked highest of the non-US universities with five blockchain-related courses. The US universities were far more likely to offer related courses than those abroad; just 5 of the 18 non-US institutions offered such classes.

Clearly, Ivy League universities appreciate the credentials of fintech, with Harvard University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Stanford University, Dartmouth College, and the University of North Carolina (UNC), all making investments from their endowments into at least one crypto fund.

Finding a place at one of these and other universities won’t get easier though, particularly in the light of tech recruitment sites such as Toptal reporting a 700% increase in demand for skilled blockchain developers since the beginning of last year.


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Blockchain Could Become Highly Efficient Tool for Healthcare Professionals

There are frequent articles referring to blockchain and a how it can be utilized in different sectors, more recently, its implications for healthcare. With the US reportedly spending near to 20% of its GDP on healthcare, blockchain technology might be called upon sooner than later to streamline and improve services in the industry.

Forbes writer Randy Bean recently spoke to industry professionals about this trend. John Halamka, chief information officer of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, a Harvard University teaching hospital, was one. He has the necessary connections to discuss blockchain, having already worked on several production blockchain applications last year. He commented:

“Blockchain is not meant for storage of large data sets. Blockchain is not an analytics platform. Blockchain has very slow transactional performance. However, as a tamperproof public ledger, blockchain is ideal for proof of work. Blockchain is highly resilient.”

Halamak is also editor-in-chief of Blockchain of Healthcare Today, and he points out that it’s his job to publish “high-quality opinion pieces and research papers” about cases that really need blockchain. He said, “Just using blockchain in healthcare because it’s cool does not make sense.”

The main areas, as he sees it, where blockchain can impact healthcare. fall into three distinct areas; medical records, consent management and micropayments.

In terms of keeping medical records, what blockchain really lends to this is a sense of integrity due to the irrefutable nature of the information once generated on the blockchain. This includes clinical trials where the results will remain tamper-free and stand up under legal examination.

Consent management principally includes the sharing of data between a number of participants and those not listed on a blockchain on a particular case can be easily identified just as those permitted to view a medical file would have authorized access.

In terms of patient incentives, the blockchain can also attach awards related to a patient committing to and completing a certain medical process or term of treatment, or even rewarded for medical trials.

Another industry professional, Greg Matthews, creator of MDigitalLife, a platform for tracking digital trends in healthcare, suggests that blockchain could be really significant in terms of that way it can give medical professionals a clear view of the bigger picture of a patients health. He points out:

“Blockchain could make the biggest impact in healthcare in enabling health outcomes that take a 360° view of the patient’s genetic profile, their demographic and socioeconomic status, the behaviours that impact their health, and their response to different treatments or combinations of treatments.”

He argues that today this is not so easy using tradition data storage methods:

“This data exists today in one form or another, but can be tremendously difficult to stitch together at an individual level. Blockchain can enable “profile stitching”, and do so in such a way that the patient’s identity is protected.”


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