Google Cloud Platform (GCP) has announced joining the Hedera Governing Council, the body charged with overseeing governance of the Hedera Hashgraph distributed ledger technology (DLT) platform.
Hedera is a public ledger that uses hashgraph consensus, which has been touted by the company as being a faster, more secure alternative to blockchain consensus mechanisms.
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Hashgraph claims to achieve high-throughput with 10,000-plus cryptocurrency transactions per second, as well as low-latency finality in seconds from its "innovative gossip about gossip protocol" and virtual voting.
Once consensus is reached, the data is added to the public ledger for everyone to see.
All members of the Hedera Governing Council have equal say in approving updates to the Hedera platform codebase and setting policies for the many nodes that would constitute Hedera's decentralised network.
Hedera's governance model, it says, protects users by eliminating the risk of forks, guaranteeing the integrity of the codebase, and committing to making the source code open for review.
Other members of the Hedera Governing Council, who will now work together with GCP to run the Hedera network, include IBM, Tata Communications, FIS Global, Nomura Holdings, Deutsche Telekom, Boeing, and DLA Piper.
Hedera expects the council to eventually comprise of up to 39 multinational entities from various industries.
In a blog post, Google said DLT can increase security and decrease the friction and costs associated with the secure exchange of information. It said however, the challenge of delivering fast and inexpensive transactions with finality has slowed the rate of DLT adoption by large enterprises that require the ability to process thousands of transactions per second.
GCP believes Hedera has addressed many of these challenges.
"Low levels of friction are not enough to ensure organisations will conduct cryptoeconomic activity on Hedera's network; participants must also trust in the stability and reliability of the operations and governance of Hedera's protocol and network," it added.
"Since the inception of its DLT, Hedera has ensured the stability and reliability of its network by leveraging the GCP premium network tier, a highly provisioned, low-latency global fibre optic network.
The partnership is expanding, with GCP also announced as the preferred cloud provider for its public testnets and Hedera Consensus Service ecosystem.
See also: Blockchain: A cheat sheet (TechRepublic)
Separately, Australia's RMIT university on Tuesday announced it was making a AU$6 million investment into its Blockchain Innovation Hub, which was in 2017 stood up to explore the social science of blockchain.
RMIT reckons the multimillion-dollar investment cements its position as a leader in research and engagement "within the new blockchain empowered economy".
A large chunk of the investment will go towards the new Blockchain Business Lab, which RMIT said brings together research expertise from across the university, including in business, law, economics, and sociology, to help develop the new regulations, skills, and capabilities RMIT thinks industry will require.
Blockchain Innovation Hub co-director Dr Chris Berg said Australia had a unique opportunity to shape the future blockchain economy.
"As the world's first dedicated social science research centre into blockchain technology, the RMIT Blockchain Innovation Hub is leading the way in both research and education," Berg said.
"Our goal is to ensure that Australian students are ready for life in the blockchain economy and that Australian research makes its mark in this incredibly exciting space."
The investment follows the Australian government launching a Blockchain Roadmap which focuses on the opportunities across the economy that can be seized and enabled by the use of blockchain technology.