The United Nations’ charity arm for children, UNICEF, is funding research into blockchain tech.
Announced Monday, UNICEF is investing $100,000 in six blockchain startups to “solve global challenges using blockchain technology,” ranging from healthcare delivery transparency to managing finances and resources.
The investments are part of a broader program which already funds 20 technology startups, according to a press release.
These are UNICEF’s latest investments in blockchain startups through its innovation fund, which first hinted at the move as far back as February 2016, and put out a call for firms in the space explicitly at the beginning of this year.
Each of these startups is based in a developing economy, with firms based out of Argentina, Mexico, India, Tunisia and Bangladesh.
The six recipients are Atix Labs and Onesmart, which are developing platforms for tracking finances; Prescrypto, which is building a platform to track patient histories; Statwig, which is working to ensure vaccine delivery with a supply chain platform; Utopixar, which is working on a social collaboration tool; and W3 Engineers, which is looking to develop an offline networking system that does not require internet access.
On top of the funding, UNICEF will provide assistance with the products and technology, as well as share access to its network of partners and experts.
The companies are expected to deliver open-source prototypes of their projects over the next 12 months.
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