September 18, 2019

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Moscow in Search of a Blockchain Contractor for Inner-City Services


MOSCOW – The Department of Information Technologies of the Russian capital is seeking a contractor that could help the city’s administration achieve transparency through blockchain technology. 

The official document released by the municipality of Moscow suggests that the fixed budget for the contractor is set to 57 million Russian rubles or approximately $860,000 US Dollars.

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In addition, the auction announcement cites that the distributed ledger system should be deployed on Ethereum’s blockchain, using a Proof-Of-Authority consensus mechanism, and it should be able to support up to 1.5 million users simultaneously.

The electronic services offered to the city’s residents would include the issuance of governmental documents, real-estate ownership, as well as decentralized allocation system for the city’s traditional outdoor markets.

While Russia is usually far from transparent, this innovative move towards a decentralized government spells hope for the winter Queen.

The Department of Information Technologies states that its goal is to increase public confidence in Moscow’s electronic services and spread their adoption using the world-famous blockchain technology that’s empowering cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH).

Furthermore, the terms of the auction suggest that it should take no more than 60 days to complete the functioning platform, once the contractor has been chosen and a respective agreement has been signed.

The new platform is also expected to be integrated with previously developed blockchain platforms, already running in Moscow, such as “Active Citizen”, a voting platform that allows residents to have a say in future city decorations, new bicycling paths, and city events, among other aspects of the municipality of the Russian capital.

Global governmental adoption is here

We’ve seen analogical actions taken by the city of Amsterdam back in 2017, where the Dutch capital used IOTA’s Tangle, and Masked Authenticated Messaging (MAM) to issue, store, and distribute governmental documents regarding housing ownership and other municipal data.

Later in 2018, we find IOTA piercing the governmental sector once again, this time with the municipality of Taipei, capital of Taiwan, where the Tangle was used for a digital identification system for Taipei netizens.

The US is not left behind, using blockchain in governmental use-cases more than once since 2016, with some notable use-cases including decentralized voting, supervision of local housing ownership, as well as encrypted telecommunication protocols used by academic institutions.

After the European Commission’s move to create the Blockchain Observatory and Forum, as well as G20’s blockchain-focused task force, we get to watch governmental use-cases more often, and paying close attention reveals some patterns that tend to flirt with digital voting platforms and housing documentation.

As for Moscow’s recent actions, the post-soviet grandchild is definitely not a newcomer to blockchain, considering projects like Ethereum, Waves, Telegram and Zenome are hailing from Russia with love.

When you have a handful of major global economic behemoths not only investing in, but also utilizing blockchain technology on a governmental level, you can certainly sleep better, dreaming for a brighter decentralized future, at last, recognized as necessary by the ones who were keeping it undergrown for so many years.



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