The Hub provides a physical space for innovation that brings together all stakeholders. The overarching goal of the Hub is to create a local ecosystem of academics, students, and entrepreneurs that drive innovation and contribute to the Algorand ecosystem. The Hub works closely with the MPhil in Fintech course, where students are taught hard (coding) skills to empower them to start their own company or make a meaningful impact in society.
During their Masters thesis, students have between 3 to 12 months to take an idea from purely academic research and develop it into a prototype. This can be in the form of an open-source project or a commercially viable company. The Hub work in conjunction with these students, providing support to significantly increase the number of students who start their own companies.
Notably, the Financial Innovation Hub will bring together Masters students, PhD students and Postdoctoral researchers who help translate the latest academic research into viable projects. On the other hand, the Hub will also facilitate the knowledge transfer from the practical and application realm back to academic work. This creates a virtuous cycle between practically relevant research and research-relevant innovation. The research into blockchain applications falls under three categories: decentralized finance (DeFi), specifically the benefits of tokenization in a decentralized marketplace; blockchain for food traceability and exploring blockchain to manage digital property rights.
To encourage and foster a university-wide interest in innovation and entrepreneurship, we are currently holding the first edition of our bi-annual hackathon. The FinHub Hack Series 2023: Blockchain for the UN Sustainable Development Goals. What makes our hackathon model unique is that it runs for two months rather than the standard 48 hours. Participating teams are mentored by industry experts in blockchain, ICT, venture capital, many of whom are successful founders in their own right, to maximise their chances of success.
Explore some of the ventures our students and staff have started.