The initiative is a part of a Singapore government-level project called OpenCerts, which was co-developed by the Ministry of Education (MOE), Government Technology Agency (GovTech), as well as national educational movement SkillsFuture Singapore (SSG) and higher learning institution Ngee Ann Polytechnic (NP).
Powered by the Ethereum (ETH) blockchain, the OpenCerts open-source platform is expected to provide a reliable way to issue and verify certificates, boost the security of data, the efficiency of issuance and validation processes, and reduce costs associated with traditional paper certificates.
Patrice Choong, Director of NP’s Sandbox – Innovation and Entrepreneurship Office, said that the institution decided to employ blockchain tech in the issuance and verification of certificates due to a productivity issue, as Southeast Asian news channel Channel NewsAsia reported.
According to Choong, the platform’s adoption removes two important requirements such as the need for a physically leveraged document and the need for verification requests.
The OpenCerts project was reportedly first piloted in 2018 by GovTech and NP, with the first batch of digital certificates issued to NP graduates. According to the report, the institution issues around 10,000 physical copies of certificates each year, with all of them being printed and stamped, while verification requests from employers reportedly number about 2,000.
Earlier this year, the University of Bahrain was reported to start issuing diplomas on blockchain using Blockcerts open standard in partnership with Learning Machine.