Transportation and Blockchain
In the simplest of terms, Blockchain is a growing list of records or “blocks” that are linked using cryptography. It is an open, distributed ledger, and it is that decentralized nature that ensures Blockchain transactions are secure and transparent. The technology has been most commonly known as an enabler of cryptocurrency like Bitcoin. However, its potential uses extend well beyond the digital exchange of currency.
One area where Blockchain’s potential is being realized is in transportation—and this was the focus of the Transportation and Blockchain class held October 7, 2019, during the NDTA-USTRANSCOM Fall Meeting. Led by Sarah Ropper, Director of Consulting, CGI Federal, panel members included Mahesh Sahasranaman, Principal Architect, UPS Supply Chain Solutions; Steven Balleby, Vice President, Global Industry Lead, Transportation and Logistics, CGI; and Dale Chrystie, Business Fellow, Blockchain Strategist, FedEx.
This unique panel of experts offered their shared experiences on the utilization of Blockchain, exploring questions such as: What is the business case Blockchain solves? Where will it add value? What opportunities exist for regulatory and other federal agencies to help or support the progression of Blockchain?
Blockchain stands to have a significant impact on the transportation industry. But in business operations where authenticity is critical, it will be no less than transformative. That means in areas like global clearance, the global supply chain, health care, and aerospace.
For Blockchain to be most effective, an open model to build out uniform global Blockchain protocols is necessary. Establishing these protocols will require ‘coopetition’ between and across industries and around the world. This means that the creation of such standards would require the organizations involved to look not at where they compete, but at where they can agree.