How blockchain technology is redefining the world of social entrepreneurship

By akohad Apr16,2024


With rising prices and the impending Bitcoin halving, blockchain technology is currently on everyone’s lips. While many people associate it mainly with the financial market and cryptocurrencies, I would like to take this opportunity to shine the spotlight on a completely different, but at least equally important facet of blockchain: its enormous potential in the field of social entrepreneurship. In our interconnected world, which faces multiple social, cultural, and environmental challenges, blockchain offers innovative approaches to bring about positive change. By presenting three innovative use cases, I would like to show how blockchain can transform social entrepreneurship and what new, exciting opportunities it opens up for all of us.

Creating transparency and trust: The example of BitGive

One of the most fundamental features of blockchain is its ability to bring transparency to processes. Charities are often criticized because donors can rarely see exactly how their donations are being used. The administrative burden and associated costs also reduce the efficiency with which aid gets to where it is needed. This leads to a mistrust of charity work and prevents potential donors from offering their financial support.

BitGive has recognized this challenge and launched a platform called GiveTrack. GiveTrack is an innovative donation platform based on blockchain technology. It allows donors to track their financial contributions in real-time and see exactly how their funds are being used. By using blockchain technology, GiveTrack ensures a high level of transparency and security by providing an immutable and publicly viewable record of all transactions. (BitGive, 2024)

An exemplary project on this platform was the charity Whisper’s initiative to provide much-needed medical support in Uganda. Faced with a children’s hospital and maternity unit in Jinja, Whisper faced the enormous challenge of transporting critically ill patients safely and efficiently. The difficulty of finding suitable emergency transportation resulted in hundreds of children and newborns losing their lives each year. (GiveTrack, 2021)

Figure 1: Project of Whisper/GiveTrack (GiveTrack, 2021)

To address this situation, Whisper set a goal to raise enough funds to purchase a specially equipped ambulance. The initiative planned to raise USD 8,000 to cover a significant portion of the total cost, with the remaining amount coming from other sources. Excess funds were earmarked for the ambulance’s equipment or operating costs. (GiveTrack, 2021)

Amazingly, the target was not only met but exceeded with a total of USD 13,371.94 raised — in just 48 days. This impressive achievement highlights the effectiveness and engagement of the global community when mobilized through transparent and secure platforms like GiveTrack. (GiveTrack, 2021)

Whisper is committed to providing regular updates on ambulance usage, ensuring a lasting connection between donors and the project (GiveTrack, 2021). This initiative has not only saved the lives of many critically ill children and mothers but has also established new standards for efficiency and transparency in the use of donated funds.

Increasing productivity: The example of AgriLedger

Another key feature of blockchain technology is its ability to increase productivity through increased transparency and efficiency. In the agricultural sector, where complex supply chains and unequal power relations often lead to injustice, blockchain can bring about a real paradigm shift. Small-scale agricultural producers, especially in developing countries, face numerous challenges, including a lack of market access, unfair pricing by middlemen, and insufficient information needed to make informed business decisions (Yankson, Owusu, & Frimpong, 2016). Together, these factors not only reduce farmers’ efficiency and productivity but also affect their income and quality of life.

AgriLedger is using blockchain technology, a specialized form of distributed ledger technology (DLT), to fundamentally change the agricultural supply chain and empower smallholder farmers in Haiti. This innovation allows farmers to sell their mango products directly to the US market without relying on middlemen. Since its launch in 2019, the project has been disrupting traditional supply chains that often exclude farmers by giving them control over their produce until it is sold in the US. Blockchain technology provides transparency by recording every transaction from farm to consumer in a digital register, allowing farmers to track their products and be directly informed of sales. (Wiget, 2021)

Not only has this technology improved trust, but it has also equipped farmers with crucial data to make informed decisions, access credit, and potentially increase their income significantly. By implementing blockchain technology, transactions are immediately verifiable. This contributes to a significant 24% increase in farmer productivity and a 40% increase in overall supply chain efficiency. (AgriLedger, 2021)

This initiative promotes a fairer and more transparent global trading system, with the success of the project impressively demonstrating the transformative potential of blockchain in agriculture in developing countries.

Promoting sustainability: The example of Tidey/BanQu

Blockchain technology is also revealing its potential as a powerful tool in the fight for a more sustainable future. Amid the global challenge of plastic pollution, which threatens ecosystems and jeopardizes human and animal health, the technology offers a glimmer of hope for effective and transparent environmental protection measures.

Tidey, a company dedicated to collecting plastic from nature, is using blockchain technology in partnership with BanQu to develop a solution to the plastic crisis in Guatemala. This country is facing significant challenges from plastic pollution, which is not only harming the environment but also affecting the quality of life of its citizens. Tidey has recognized that approaches to tackling plastic pollution often fail due to a lack of transparency and traceability, making it difficult to assess the effectiveness of recycling and clean-up initiatives. (BanQu, 2024)

By introducing a blockchain-based platform to record and validate plastic credits, Tidey is innovating ways to tackle the plastic crisis. The partnership with BanQu enables transparent and tamper-proof tracking of recycled plastic, from waste collectors to the issuance of plastic credits. Every step in this process is documented through blockchain technology, ensuring transparency and security in the plastic collection and recycling chain. (BanQu, 2024)

Figure 2: How it works (BanQu, 2024)

Since the launch of this initiative in March 2023, Tidey has achieved considerable success. More than 100 waste collectors have been registered on the BanQu platform, enabling the collection and recycling of over 250,000 pounds of plastic waste. This amount of recycled material was converted into verifiable Plastic Credits, the sale of which led to a 47% increase in revenue. These figures are not only proof of the economic success but also the positive environmental impact of the initiative. (BanQu, 2024)

Furthermore, the collaboration between Tidey and BanQu demonstrates how blockchain technology can be used to solve complex challenges such as double counting and greenwashing. By attributing each Plastic Credit to a verifiable source, this system strengthens buyers’ confidence in the authenticity of their sustainability investments. This in turn not only promotes a cleaner environment but also opens new revenue streams for Tidey by transparently demonstrating their eco-friendly efforts. (BanQu, 2024)


After looking at these three fascinating use cases, I am deeply impressed by the power of blockchain technology to drive social entrepreneurship. These projects demonstrate how blockchain not only has the potential to disrupt traditional business models but also to address significant social, environmental, and economic challenges. Blockchain’s ability to bring transparency and trust to previously opaque processes creates a new level of accountability and efficiency. Especially in the social sector, where the need for transparency in the use of funds is high, this technology represents a kind of revolution.

However, the widespread implementation of blockchain technology also faces challenges. These include the need for a comprehensive digital infrastructure and a lack of understanding and trust in the technology among the public. This requires continuous educational work to make the advantages and functionality of blockchain technology understandable and thus promote broader acceptance.

Despite these challenges, I am optimistic that blockchain technology has the potential to play a central role in social entrepreneurship. The projects presented are impressive examples of how innovative technologies can be used to bring about real, positive change in the world. However, it will take a joint commitment from developers, businesses, governments, and civil society to create the conditions for the successful implementation of this technology and make its benefits accessible to all. I am excited about the future and how blockchain will continue to be used to develop sustainable and equitable solutions to the most pressing issues of our time.


AgriLedger. (2021). Haiti Case Study. Retrieved April 2024, from AgriLedger:

BanQu. (2024). Case Study Tidey. Retrieved from BanQu:

BitGive. (2024). About Us. Retrieved April 2024, from BitGive Foundation:

GiveTrack. (2021). Project Details. Retrieved April 2024, from GiveTrack:’s-Hospital-in-Uganda

Wiget, L. (2021, May 18). When mango farmers meet blockchain Agriledger. Retrieved April 2024, from Atlas of the Future:

Yankson, P. W., Owusu, A. B., & Frimpong, S. (2016). Challenges and Strategies for Improving the Agricultural Marketing Environment in Developing Countries. Journal of Agricultural & Food Information, 17(1), 49–61.

This article was written as part of an assignment for the “Introduction to Social Entrepreneurship” course at the University of California, Berkeley (Blum Center for Developing Economies).


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By akohad

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