INnovation lab

Bits + Blocks is a thematic innovation lab with a mission to develop new ventures for the emerging technology of Bitcoin and blockchains. Through design entrepreneurship, the lab explores the future of trust, transactions, and reputation. Our ultimate aim is to design new products and services that will profoundly reshape existing markets and create new ones.

the latest:
iot + blockchain

Date: Saturday, March 12, 2016
Time: 8:30am - 6:00pm

The objects in our lives are quickly becoming smarter and more connected. We are surrounded by more sensors than ever, and activities are becoming increasingly automated based on the data collected by these sensors. But what does it mean to have devices—from our cars, to our refrigerators, to our thermostats and beyond—connect not just to us as individuals, but also to each other? How will the world change when data and devices are able to freely connect, mix, and create new services and experiences, without direct guidance by a person?

We'll spend a day at IDEO’s San Francisco studio for an action-packed, high-energy dive into the IDEO design-thinking process. Expert facilitators will match you with a talented and diverse team of peers, and together you’ll design venture concepts that explore the questions above. 

Our Lenses

We're curious about three main lenses for this research expedition.

How will we cooperate and collaborate when reputations are transparent, interoperable and dynamically built?

How will emerging technologies like cryptocurrencies enable new ways for people, places, or things to transact with one another?

What new forms of trade will be possible—and what new roles will be needed—when the current needs for building trust are reduced or eliminated?


For the summer of 2015, we assembled 25 of Boston’s most talented and inspiring students for a pop-up version of the Bits + Blocks Lab. Hosted at the Harvard Innovation lab (i-Lab), the teams are building new ventures that the possibilities of blockchain technology through the lens of human needs. Teams were supported by IDEO designers, industry experts, lead users, and technical experts. We spent the summer building six new ventures to demonstrate what our future with this technology will be.

3 ways the Lab works


collaborative CONSORTIUMS
12-month long memberships for 8-10 like-minded organizations to collaborate on meaningful areas of opportunity; meeting quarterly to work through possibilities.


research expeditions
Similar to the Summer 2015 Lab, we design 3-month programs that provide expert mentorship, venture design training and the right conditions to build prototypes of new ventures. 6-8 teams per expedition.


4-month programs for startups in residence, working together around the Bits + Blocks theme to launch their ventures into the market.


In Collaboration with