The new head of Blockchain Australia, Steve Vallas, has announced that he will focus on building up confidence in blockchain and improving the image of blockchain technology among businesses and governments.

Vallas replaces Nick Giurietto who led the association over the last five years. He has worked as an industry coach and mentor for multiple universities and accelerator programs and is the founder of Australian marketing firm Honey Digital. Vallas has also advised governments on the blockchain sector.

A new vision

Speaking to Cointelegraph, Vallas said he will focus on improving key industry leaders’ confidence in the technology by improving their understanding of it as a stable and well developed solution:

“It comes down to people’s definition of blockchain. Their views were formed during the 2017 period where a lot of scams and [poorly planned] projects failed.”

Vallas explained that, while people often know blockchain is used for cryptocurrencies, they often won’t be able to understand how it could apply to other fields, such as the supply chain, retail or legal sectors.

The time is right

Many industries have taken hits from the coronavirus pandemic, but the blockchain industry is one of the few that can take advantage of it, said Vallas.

“It [COVID-19] has highlighted the flaws in current systems, pointed towards blockchain’s potential,” as it does not rely on humans to keep it running. Supply lines are just one of the industries that have seen massive disruption over the last few months, and organizations will now be open to discussing unorthodox solutions.

He said Blockchain Australia could sieze on the opportunity presented by talking to businesses as they plan for a post pandemic future.

Blockchain Australia Roadmap

In February this year, the Australian Ministry for Industry, Science, Energy and Resources formulated a new national strategy capturing the potential value generated through business-related blockchain engagement in a National Blockchain Roadmap.

Vallas will also take over work on the Blockchain Roadmap talking with industry leaders and government officials to bring relevant parties together for the ongoing effort.

He believes it was a necessary start and welcomed by many as a clear demonstration that the government, both state and federal, were willing to work with blockchain leaders to develop a sustainable plan.

“This is the first [serious] interaction by the governments, both state and federal [...] and just last month, [Prime Minister] Scott Morrison said blockchain is something that must be considered.”

Blockchain can permeate many industries and has the potential to “be so disruptive” for many of them Vallas believes, and it is critical to bring as many parties into the discussion early to strategize how Australia can move forward toward better blockchain adoption.

The goal moving forward is to connect the “silos of information” that already exist among different sectors and bring them together, he said.

Vallas finished off by clarifying that he wants to focus on the people behind the technology:

“Good people are already doing things and we [Blockchain Australia] needs to support them.”