Understand the Untapped Potential of Blockchain Technology with Minjee Kim, Ground X

Asia Blockchain Review
May 28, 2019

Asia Blockchain Review recently talked to Minjee Kim, Eco & Social Impact Manager at Ground X about the role of Ground X’s Klaytn platform in the blockchain ecosystem, the social impact of blockchain technology, and her master thesis study on ICT4D use cases that may help developers understand the untapped potential of blockchain technology.

Asia Blockchain Review: Please tell us a little bit about your background & your current position at Ground X.

Minjee Kim: I’m a manager for the blockchain ecosystem and social impact (E&S) team at Ground X. I’ve previously conducted research about diverse, cross-cutting issues in the international development sector, including ICT4D (Information and Communication Technologies for Development).


ABR: Your master thesis was on Implications on Blockchain Technology for Development through the Lens of ICT4D Cases. What drew you to this topic?

MK: Although many people have been talking about the potential areas and ways to apply blockchain technology and technology is often deemed a prerequisite for development, I believe technologies and their applications should be researched beforehand to derive lessons learned for blockchain applications. Technologies themselves cannot be a silver bullet, but their implementation and the surrounding discourse can be changed. In the wave of blockchain for social impact, I thought looking back to existing cases would be something indispensable, and this is why I decided to write a thesis on tapping the potential of blockchain technology itself through the study of existing ICT4D use cases.


ABR: What role do you see Klaytn playing in the future blockchain ecosystem?

MK: Klaytn has a clear, definite vision for this industry: mass adoption. This entails an emphasis on better UI/UX and DX, as well as on social impact. People don’t use a platform just because performance is good. We’re aware of this, so based on this philosophy and vision, we believe that Klaytn will play a major role in building a holistic ecosystem that includes UI/UX, DX, developer communities, and enterprises at any scale.


ABR: Blockchain for social impact is something that you’re currently working on. How do you see Klaytn furthering the development of technology in this space?

MK: There are many ongoing pilot projects, but I believe Klaytn has outstanding performance, given its 1-sec finality and 3000+ TPS. And this is achieved without having many participants to run nodes. Indeed, this is why Klaytn could play an active role in furthering the development of technology in this space. Most users, especially for projects in international development, will be people without any experience of the current infrastructure for blockchain technology. Klaytn aims to make its user experience fast and simple, like sending SMS messages through 2G phones. This doesn’t require extra effort to understand blockchain technology, and this is why Klaytn is suitable for blockchain for social impact initiatives.


ABR: We are seeing more emerging projects & technology focusing on social impact; why is this?

MK: Since the birth of blockchain technology, blockchain for social impact has been a buzzword. Ideologically, the democratization of the system or the structure itself is linked to strengthening the voice of the bottom of the pyramid, so it seems to me that many of the projects incorporate blockchain technology and believe that it can create social impact by nature. However, without considering the ideological aspects of it,  technical aspects of blockchain can also resolve many pain points, especially through the concept of a ‘distributed ledger.’

In addition, if the consensus mechanism, one of the core elements of blockchain technology, is combined with smart contracts, this means that all the ‘consensus’ happening on the blockchain platform is processed in a democratic way and being recorded onto the distributed ledger, thereby ensuring immutability and traceability. There are already many good use cases in the development sector, so we think that this is an inevitable trend, and we are looking forward to leading meaningful, impactful initiatives in blockchain for social impact.


ABR: Projects focusing on social impact are especially welcomed at the Klaytn Hackathon. What support & guidance can the teams expect if they choose to build on the Klaytn platform?

MK: We are talking with various stakeholders, especially in the realm of the international development sector. For teams with outstanding records or ideas of blockchain for social impact, we are more than happy to scale up the project with them, as well as link them with the accelerating program. So, even if a social impact team does not win the hackathon, projects with full potential will benefit from cooperative opportunities with Ground X. This depends on the project’s context, so please do not hesitate to join Klaytn Hackathon if you have an innovative idea to change the world for the better.


ABR: What are you excited to see in the development of the Klaytn Hackathon?

MK: Since our vision is to achieve the mass adoption of blockchain technology, we’re excited to see any blockchain applications for mass adoption. To achieve this, we also invited people from accelerator companies to act as judges for the hackathon, so that more opportunities could be given to participants with full potential.

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