TC116: Blockchain for International Development

Does blockchain technology really possess the potential to transform international development sectors ranging from education to health to agriculture? Can it offer tangible value beyond digital currencies? This four-week online certificate course will attempt to cut through the hype and evaluate the potential of this technology on everything from remittances to supply chain management, voting practices, smart contracts, land titling, educational credentialing, health record storage, and more.

Course Description

Does blockchain technology really possess the potential to transform international development sectors ranging from education to health to agriculture? Can it offer tangible value beyond digital currencies? This four-week online certificate course will attempt to cut through the hype and evaluate the potential of this technology on everything from remittances to supply chain management, voting practices, smart contracts, land titling, educational credentialing, health record storage, and more. We will also consider policy and regulatory frameworks, validation models, security concerns, limitations of access/digital literacy, and the many other constraints facing this nascent movement. 

The course will feature 6-8 live events with interactive guest expert presentations who are leading blockchain practitioners, software developers, and data scientists. It will also include a unique hands-on learning environment with animated videos, technology demos, practical activities, networking events, immersive simulations and examples of early case studies from the Gates Foundation, World Food Programme, and UNICEF Innovation. 

Course Topics

For those completely new to the world of blockchain, we will provide content and resources around basic terms and debates so that you too can be conversant about the pitfalls and potentials of this new technology. 

  • Week 1: Introduction to Blockchain: The Decentralized Digital Ledger. Overview of key terms, frameworks, case studies and debates. 
  • Week 2: Platform and Technologies. Survey of the early technology leaders in blockchain and evaluate their relative strengths and weaknesses. 
  • Week 3: What Could Go Wrong? An exploration of all the pitfalls and tradeoffs associated with blockchain technology. 
  • Week 4: Where Do We Go From Here? The future of blockchain in international development.

Course Objectives

At the conclusion of the course, participants will be able to:

  • Critically analyze both the opportunities and the pitfalls that emerge when working with blockchain technology to carry out international development work
  • Connect relevant development theories to the technological strategies and tools discussed in the course
  • Manage specific software platforms and tools for blockchain activities
  • Design dynamic and effective strategies for using blockchain tools and platforms improve development efforts
  • Develop critical self-confidence for working with blockchain technology to address a range of international development challenges

Course Methodology

  • This course is delivered entirely online over a period of four weeks.
  • This course features several live interactive expert presentations each week with leading practitioners, software developers, and academics.
  • Every live event is recorded and archived for you to watch later.
  • This course also features a unique hands-on learning environment with animated videos, technology demos, practical activities, networking events, office hours, participant presentations, immersive simulations, and more.
  • TechChange recommends budgeting a minimum commitment of 5-7 hours per week and scheduling time for the course around your existing obligations.
  • Participants will have access to all course content for at least 4 months after course completion so the material can be completed and revisited later.

Price

  • $395 if application and payment is submitted by November 20, 2017
  • $445 if application and payment is submitted by December 20, 2017
  • $495 if application and payment is submitted by course start date

Group discount rates available. For more details, please contact us at social [at] techchange.org. If you are not happy with your course experience for any reason, TechChange is happy to discuss refunds.

Next Session

Jan 22, 2018 - Feb 16, 2018