Columbia IBM Center for Blockchain and Data Transparency Showcase 2021

The Columbia-IBM Center for Blockchain and Data Transparency brought together cross-disciplinary teams to advance innovation in blockchain, data transparency, and closely associated topics that are driving new science and technology, thought leadership, and policy.

The showcase covered the issues of our times and the impact IBM and Columbia University is making on them: transparency of carbon footprinting data, blockchains disruption on supply chains, fintech advancements, and the possibilities around data privacy implementation while considering the legal and policy implications. The event also highlighted the projects that have gone through our accelerators that are actively working on bridging the gap between research and implementation.

The showcase celebrated the many accomplishments of the Center throughout the past year. Each session was led by senior representatives from Columbia University and IBM.


Wednesday, June 16, 2021 (10:30 AM – 2:00 PM EDT)

Virtual Event – Zoom. Tickets are free. Timings of each session will be shared with registered attendees closer to the event date.




Host: Sharon Sputz, Executive Director of Strategic Programs, The Data Science Institute, Columbia University

10:30 AM: Opening Remarks

  • Shih-Fu Chang, Senior Executive Vice Dean, School of Engineering and Applied Science; and Richard Dicker Professor of Electrical Engineering at Columbia University
  • Jeannette M. Wing, Avanessians Director of the Data Science Institute and Professor of Computer Science at Columbia University


10:40 AM: KeynoteTechnology and Research Investment for Social Impact

Stacy Hobson

Dr. Stacy Hobson is the Director of the Responsible and Inclusive Technologies group at IBM Research.  Stacy’s research has spanned multiple areas including topics such as addressing racial and social inequities, AI transparency, and governmental crisis management. Stacy is fortunate to have the opportunity to use her expertise as a scientist to address problems that matter for the world and in particular, for people in historically underrepresented communities.

Stacy has authored more than 20 peer-reviewed publications and holds 16 US patents. Stacy earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science from South Carolina State University, a Master of Science degree in Computer Science from Duke University and a PhD in Neuroscience and Cognitive Science from the University of Maryland at College Park.


11:00 AM: Session 1: Transparency and Efficiency in Carbon Footprint Quantifications

  • Christoph Meinrenken, Associate Research Scientist, Earth Institute; and Adjunct Professor, Sustainability Management, School of Professional Studies, Columbia University
  • Tamar Eilam, IBM Fellow, IBM Research

11:30 AM: Session 2: Disrupting Supply Chains through Blockchain and AI

  • Jay Sethuraman, Professor and Chair of Industrial Engineering and Operations Research, Columbia University
  • Ramesh Gopinath, VP, Organic Ventures, IBM Cloud and Cognitive Software

12:00 PM: Session 3: Fireside Chat on the State of the Union of Blockchain and Decentralized Finance (DeFi)

  • R.A. Farrokhnia, Faculty & Executive Director in the Dean’s Office, Advanced Projects and Applied Research in Fintech, Columbia Business School
  • Joe Latone, Researcher (IBM Quantum), IBM Research

12:30 PM: Session 4: Security and Privacy

  • Steve Bellovin, Percy K. and Vida L.W. Hudson Professor of Computer Science, Columbia University
  • J.R. Rao, IBM Fellow and CTO for Security Research, IBM Research

1:00 PM: Session 5: Highlights from the Innovation Accelerator

  • Dmytro Pokhylko, Director of the Columbia Lab-to-Market Accelerator Network, Columbia Technology Ventures
  • Austin Flon, IBM Ventures, NYC Innovation Hub Leader

1:30 PM: Closing Remarks

  • Mahmoud Naghshineh, Chief Technology Officer, IBM Global Industries

2:00 PM: End