In a recent revelation, Wrathof Kahmeman, a prominent figure in the XRP community, highlighted an intriguing development concerning Ripple Labs’s UBRI initiative on Twitter. He shared, “Interesting resume from the University of Waterloo touting recent CBDC research based on the XRPL. Notes they prototyped a banking interface to be presented at UBRI Connect 2023! Lots of development happening in Canada.”
The document linked from the University of Waterloo indicates that William Park was on the hunt for a “Research Assistant” for a tenure spanning May to August 2023. The role demanded proficiency in “Python, Flask, XRPL, React, TypeScript” and involved tasks such as: “Conducted research evaluating the viability of a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) based on the XRPL blockchain. Prototyped a banking interface using Flask, the xrpl-py library, and React to manage and visualize banking transactions facilitated on the XRPL blockchain (to be presented at UBRI Connect 2023).”
Ripple Labs’ Deepening Ties with Canadian Institutions
UBRI Connect, scheduled for October 12–13 in Toronto, is a gathering that brings together scholars, researchers, and thought leaders from the UBRI network to spotlight blockchain initiatives, disseminate knowledge, and stimulate future research. A recent blog post by Ripple Labs from June 2023 provides further context:
“O Canada, indeed! Ripple is continuing to showcase its ongoing commitment to fostering talent and innovation in the Canadian region, especially in the growing crypto hub of Toronto.”
Ripple’s University Blockchain Initiative (UBRI) has forged a partnership with the University of Toronto. The institution launched an independent XRP Ledger validator and is poised to play a pivotal role in recruiting XRPL campus ambassadors for upcoming batches.
Professor Andreas Veneris of the University of Toronto remarked, “I have been following Ripple for a decade, as they have been an early leader in blockchain technology. Hosting an XRP Ledger validator matches our goals in both promoting education around the XRP Ledger being a decentralized blockchain, but also the public’s trust in scholars for their long-standing ethos to advance social wellbeing.”
The UBRI initiative has been instrumental in bolstering blockchain and crypto technology research in Canada. Over the past five years, it has invested more than $2 million in premier Canadian educational institutions, fostering innovation and growth in blockchain-centric research and education.
Ripple’s expansion in Canada is noteworthy. Within a year of inaugurating an engineering hub in Toronto, the company has been actively recruiting top-tier technical talent. The Toronto office has already exceeded its initial hiring goals, and Ripple has ambitious plans for the upcoming years.
The broader context of Ripple’s endeavors in the realm of CBDCs is equally significant. Ripple is focusing one part of its business on a private version of the public, open-source XRP Ledger tailored for Central Banks.
This CBDC Private Ledger is designed for payments and is built on the technology that powers the XRP Ledger. It promises cost-effective, reliable, and near-instantaneous transactions at a scale that Central Banks demand. The CBDC Private Ledger is also supported by RippleNet technologies, ensuring high security standards and customization based on unique privacy and policy requirements.
As Bitcoinist reported, several countries are already piloting the CBDCs on the XRP Ledger, among them are the Republic of Palau, Montenegro and Hong Kong.
As of press time, XRP traded at $0.5203.