Philadelphia Asks Experts to Share Blockchain Expertise

In Philadelphia, blockchain technology could soon be woven into city government as part of a new pilot program to solve city challenges and improve service delivery.

The idea for the program was first shared on the city’s Office of Innovation and Technology website, requesting that experts and developers share their ideas related to blockchain, smart contracts, Web 3.0 technologies and local government applications.

To flesh out these ideas, an informal discussion between city CIO Mark Wheeler and blockchain technologists would take place, followed by additional conversations with the city and state policymakers working on or exploring crypto technology.

After that, a process similar to the city’s SmartCityPHL Pitch and Pilot program would be used to demonstrate and implement the concept. That program currently solicits ideas to improve government services through technological innovation by offering funding to test solutions in partnership with the private sector.

Winning providers can receive up to $75,000 or $100,000 so long as local businesses pilot a solution that aligns with guiding principles set out in the city’s SmartCityPHL Roadmap, such as prioritizing disadvantaged residents and communities, maintaining resident privacy and data security and being able to scale upward.

However, getting to this point is a possibility and not a given.

“These are only possibilities,” the website states. “This discovery process is a signal to innovators in these technologies that the city of Philadelphia’s Office of Innovation and Technology is ready to explore potential projects that are of value to big-city government public services and operations.”

Nonetheless, Wheeler expressed his excitement for the program via a Tweet that said, “Excited that @PHLInnovation officially in a discovery process on #Web3 technologies and use cases for city government” and gave props to Miami’s blockchain efforts in a follow-up message.

As for the program’s exact launch date, that is yet to be decided.

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