The European Innovation Council (EIC) has awarded 5 million euros ($ 5.6 million) to six winners competing in the Blockchains for Social Good program.
The goal of the prize was to encourage blockchain initiatives for social and economic development, according to a statement released by the EIC on Wednesday.
A diverse pool of applicants participated in the initiative, including 176 applicants from 43 countries, with 19 applicants from outside the European Union. Applicants included including international candidates, corporations and public institutions.
The winning projects focused on topics like improving accountability; fair trade and circular economy; increasing transparency in production processes and quality information and contributing to financial inclusion and renewable energy.
Since the primary application of blockchain technology has previously been focused on financial use cases, with limited extension to its viability within social and sustainability domains, the results of the prize are critical in opening up new areas where blockchain may be equally relevant, per the report.
“The proposed solutions show how blockchain can create positive social change by supporting fair trade, increasing transparency in production processes and e-commerce and contributing to financial inclusion by exploring decentralised economic structures,” said Maria Gabriel, Commissioner for Innovation Research, Culture, Education and Youth. “I hope that this award can help upscale these outstanding ideas and inspire many other innovators."