Vietnam’s Ministry of Education and Training (MOET) has entered into an exclusive agreement with Singapore-based smart contract platform TomoChain to archive student records on a blockchain, TomoChain announced Wednesday.
According to the announcement, the National Qualifications Archive program will upload all certifications achieved by Vietnam’s high school and higher education students to the TomoChain public blockchain to create a transparent and immutable record. Qualifications are currently managed by educational and training institutions, resulting in delayed verification processes by recruitment agencies and human resources, the statement said.
Record-keeping and identity verification are applications of blockchain technology that could be applied to public administration. Earlier this year, U.S. lawmakers called on president Trump’s administration to consider using blockchain technology to upgrade healthcare and supply registries, and to use the technology to speed up verifying identities of individuals due to receive government benefits.
“Diploma and certificate management is an issue that needs to be resolved by technology, which is significant for the whole of society and also cost-efficient for the diploma management system in particular, and education in general,” Vietnam’s Deputy Minister of Education and Training, Nguyen Van Phuc, said in a press statement.
The archive initiative is Vietnam’s largest exploration of blockchain technology to date and marks the first instance of a public blockchain being adopted at national level by a major government, the announcement said.
A number of countries and educational institutions have tested blockchain based registries to keep student records. In 2017, Malta’s ministry of education struck a deal with a blockchain startup to track student credentials and academic records on a blockchain. The same year, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) issued 100 diplomas on a blockchain as part of a pilot program.
Headquartered in Singapore, TomoChain has additional offices in Vietnam and Japan. It has its own crypto exchange TomoDEX powered by a layer-one protocol TomoX which launched earlier this year.
In September 2020, TomoChain acquired Lition, a German firm that provides public and private blockchain solutions with deletable data features.
After a trial in Vietnam, up to 1.5 million diplomas of all types granted by educational institutions under the MOET will be entered into the system. The nationwide system is set to be implemented for the 2020-2021 school year, TomoChain said.