In an interview with Bloomberg, Charles Hoksinson, CEO of Input Output, revealed the progress of the implementing a decentralized identity solution in Ethiopia.
The head of the company Input Output (IOHK), in charge of major development of Cardano cryptocurrency functionalities, revealed that a pilot project to build a decentralized ID for a complete Ethiopian school system involving about 5 million students has already managed to “get on board” about one million people. At the same time, they expect that the project will be successfully launched in a pilot phase during September or October this year.
The decentralized ID is intended to be used by students and teachers to monitor attendance, record study results (grades) and also to record academic achievements and honors. According to the authors of the project, the fact that they will be recorded on a decentralized database should contribute to the immutability of these data and their greater transparency. At the same time, such a solution should be less costly for Ethiopia than a centralized solution.
Hoskinson told Bloomberg that a school project involving about 5 million Ethiopians is just the beginning of their ambitions in the country. “Our goal is to compete with others interested in the nationwide ID project, which involves 110 million people,” indicated further plans. If Cardano succeeds in this direction, which will probably be decided in particular by the success of the pilot school project, not only the population database but also Ethiopian industry could work on the ecosystem of this cryptocurrency.
The project in Ethiopia is not suitable for every country
In an interview, Leader of Cardano openly admitted that the project they are building in Ethiopia cannot be applied in countries where non-democratic regimes operate. He cited China and Saudi Arabia as examples. Hoskinson added that they were close to similar cooperation in an unnamed Latin American country, but when they found that the government did not respect democratic principles, they abandoned the plans. “We recently rejected an agreement with one Central American country that we really wanted to make. However, when the first layers peeled off, we noticed that the rule of law was deteriorating in it, so it was simply not in line with our values. “
So where can Cardano succeed at the state level? ,,You must first look at the country level and then work your way up to other facts and circumstances. Things are changing and in some cases you will have to leave the country even though you have worked in it for years. “ said.
The unresolved question remains what will happen to the decentralized database (or what will be the significance) when the wrong data is written to it. The decentralized database only guarantees the immutability of the data, but cannot verify whether the data is correct and reliable. In other words, even a database that has been correct for years can be devalued, for example, in the event of a change in the political regime that tries to sabotage it.
On the other hand, it may make sense for people who have lost their identity, whether for political or other reasons. This brings certainty that their identity or the achieved study results will not be lost. An example is migrants from a country plagued by civil war. If they had a decentralized ID, they would have the opportunity to prove in the country that granted them asylum that they had graduated from university.