CSIRO’s Data61, Commonwealth Bank of Australia Release Results Of Blockchain Smart Money Trial

Blockchain, News | November 14, 2018 By:

CSIRO’s Data61, Australia’s digital innovation network, and the Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) have released the findings of their blockchain “smart money” trial.

The two entities started collaborating last month to explore the potential for blockchain technology to create “smart money” – also known as programmable money, which can be used to help manage insurance payouts, budgeting and the management of trusts and charities in Australia. The technology was trialled with ten participants and carers in the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) using a prototype app.

In a new report titled “Making Money Smart,” Data61 and CBA said the trial demonstrated that smart money could empower individuals, while cutting administration costs, removing paperwork and reducing fraud across the economy. Participants and carers estimated that the prototype app could save them one hour to 15 hours per week, while service providers estimated potential annual cost savings as a percentage of revenue of 0.3 percent to 0.8 percent.

Julie Hunter, CBA’s Head of Government and ADIs, said the app has the potential to enable NDIS participants to exercise greater choice and control over their disability support services, while streamlining budget management and removing the need for paperwork.

“The results also show potential to reduce administration costs for disability service providers and the risk of fraud and accidental misspending,” Hunter said. “The trial has also highlighted that the technology could have wide application across the government, business and not-for-profit sectors. We look forward to exploring these opportunities with our partners and clients across Australia.”

Data61 and CBA claim that if the government implement the proof of concept as part of a full-scale solution across the country, the economic benefits would equate to hundreds of millions of dollars annually.

Dr Mark Staples, Senior Principal Researcher in the Software and Computational Systems program at CSIRO’s Data61, said prototype system’s automation and flexibility could reduce friction and enable greater innovation in many payment environments and unlock network-effect benefits.

“This could include more directly connecting citizens to public policy programs, empowering people to optimize their spending through things like smart savings plans and smart diets, and reducing costs for businesses, including through the potential for self-taxing transactions,” Staples said.