EF Blog

ETH top background starting image
ETH bottom background ending image
Skip to content

This post is available in 3 languages:


Meet Cohort 4 of the Next Billion Fellows!

Posted by Team Next Billion on June 24, 2024

Meet Cohort 4 of the Next Billion Fellows!

As a global public resource, technology must remain open, accessible, and dedicated to promoting the greater good. The Next Billion Fellowship Program is a testament to this vision, seeking to capture stories of communities whose lives are changing for the better. Today, we are proud to introduce seven individuals with remarkable stories to share. Their narratives offer a glimpse into their diverse contexts and possible futures — ones we cannot fully foresee but where humanity is uplifted. By drawing inspiration from the Next Billion Fellows’ stories, we hope to imagine a future where this open protocol of human coordination serves as a public good for billions of people.

The Next Billion Fellows Cohort 4

David Uzochukwu is leading an initiative focused on enhancing Ethereum’s decentralization by educating the community in Africa on how to run an Ethereum node. Exploring barriers like the lack of stable internet access and power outages as well as the possible solutions, this project seeks to make visible the considerations that need to be in place for decentralization and inclusivity.

Eddie Kago is working on Antugrow, a platform that digitizes production records and farm metadata to create on-chain reputation scores. It aims to provide affordable working capital for smallholder farmers and cooperatives in Kenya by standardizing farmer data for interoperability. Eddie seeks to unlock low-cost credit and scalable agricultural insurance.

Guo Liu works for freedom of information as a co-founder of Matters Town, a digital space and censorship-resilient publication platform. His project aims to support high-quality open-access content by merging advertisement protocols with the Harberger tax and quadratic funding.

Lefteris Arapakis was raised in a family of fishermen and soon understood that fishermen collected a lot of plastic from the ocean. He built a social enterprise called Enaleia, focused on reducing marine plastic pollution starting first in Greece and then expanding to the rest of the Mediterranean. As part of his Fellowship, Lefteris will implement a system that enables the traceability of recycled marine plastic on Ethereum.

Mercedes “Meche” Rodriguez Simon is conducting practical research on using web3 solutions to support human rights organizations in Venezuela. As a dedicated human rights activist and a key member of Ethereum Venezuela, Meche aims to bring her knowledge to address Venezuela's political and humanitarian crises.

Rebecca Mqamelo explores integrating EVM-based local currencies with traditional economic practices in Africa. Her research, with Grassroots Economics, will compare two different models of community currencies: traditional digital vouchers backed by government bodies and a model where the community pools their future production capacity as commitment.

Tomislav ”Tomo” Mamić is working on the Municipal Quadratic Funding Initiative (MUQA), a project designed to assist cities in using Quadratic Voting (QV) and Quadratic Funding (QF) mechanisms to allocate funding for public projects. His pilot in the city of Split in Croatia will experiment with QF in the areas of culture and green spaces, aiming to introduce transparency, efficiency, and citizen participation in managing public resources.

What’s Next?

Over the next six months, each Fellow will drive forward a small project that works toward larger objectives in their story. Fellows will share their progress during Devcon 7 in Southeast Asia, November 12-15th. Follow @EFNextBillion for updates. Need financial support to attend Devcon? Check out the Devcon SEA Scholars Program and apply by July 7th, 2024!

Subscribe to Protocol Announcements

Sign up to receive email notifications for protocol-related announcements, such as network upgrades, FAQs or security issues. You can opt-out of these at any time.