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What is now the Stacks ecosystem started in 2013 as a research project at Princeton University. Those academic roots continue to be of central importance to the founders of Stacks and central to the culture of several leading entities within the Stacks ecosystem. Stacks remains committed to these roots and to the future engineers and entrepreneurs who will continue to drive this technology forward.
As part of this commitment, the company is supporting LUMS with a Stacks research grant of five million STX tokens, worth approximately $4.1 million USD and over PKR670 million, that aims to fuel research on blockchain technology and distributed applications.
LUMS, one of Pakistan’s leading research universities, will use Hiro’s grant (formerly Blockstack PBC), to develop and build out educational programs that will enable faculty and students to research blockchain, cryptocurrencies, distributed-ledger technology and more. The program intends to have a decidedly practical feel, with a focus on emerging markets and others areas where these technologies can most successfully be applied.
Experienced in providing full-scale support for a wide variety of funded and collaborative projects, staff at the LUMS Office of Research will work closely with the faculty and researchers. Research and programming, moreover, will be carried out in cooperation with the LUMS Syed Babar Ali School of Science and Engineering (SBASSE).
Muneeb Ali, a LUMS alumnus, BS Computer Science 2003 and Founder of Stacks says, “LUMS has always been a hub of cutting-edge research and innovations and I am proud to have a long association with the Syed Babar Ali School of Science and Engineering. Crypto networks are likely the biggest tech resolution since the internet itself. This new collaboration on crypto not just strengthens my association with LUMS but can prepare the next generation of engineers and entrepreneurs to architect the next generation of the internet by leveraging the blockchain technology.”
LUMS programming will complement ongoing efforts by Stacks Pakistan, the Stacks chapter launched in late 2020,that is focusing on awareness, community building and advocacy of Stacks in Pakistan. The chapter has launched the ‘Stacks Developers Guild Program’, or SDG, in seven cities across Pakistan. Through a network of ambassadors, SDG leaders are playing a pivotal role in spreading awareness across universities in Lahore, Karachi, Islamabad, Quetta, Peshawar, Faisalabad and Abbottabad. A series of bootcamps, moreover, are being conducted on a national level to engage students and young professionals in developing decentralized applications.
“The vision of Stacks is to give ownership and control of data back to the user and level the playing field for all. It is an inevitable shift for the world but it will take its due course with each region. As Stacks Pakistan, we are building the grounds for our nation to fully benefit from this technology in years to come.” says Nabeel Qadeer, Country Consultant, Pakistan.
LUMS has a rich history of being a pioneer in technology and research. The University will use the funding to train the next-generation of scholars, engineers and entrepreneurs through new educational programmes involving interdisciplinary courses on blockchain and its applications. “We will also carry out research on uses of blockchain in novel applications especially in the context of emerging markets. LUMS has always been at the forefront of academic innovations, delivering quality education, and training students well-versed in the cutting-edge technologies. The collaboration with Stacks is another big step in our mission of embracing the impactful technologies into our curriculum and research agenda,” commented Dr. Zartash Afzal Uzmi, Associate Professor, Departments of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, SBASSE.
“Stacks entry into Pakistan is timely and very much needed as we enter the fourth industrial revolution where the ability to define and exchange digital assets in a transparent manner will be a key technology. This will not only enable new business models but is also expected to usher in a new era of novel distributed applications over blockchain. Stacks Pakistan is laying the foundations for this change and will immensely benefit Pakistan.” says Dr. Ihsan Ayyub Qazi, Associate Professor of Computer Science, LUMS and PI at the National Center for Big Data and Cloud Computing.
The Pakistani community is growing steadily and will be served well by both the Stacks Pakistan Chapter and LUMS as they look to educate and inspire the next generation of blockchain technologists and entrepreneurs throughout the country.