Huddle01 Welcomes Shruti Appiah as Chief Economist

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Huddle01 Welcomes Shruti Appiah as Chief Economist

Middletown, Delaware, February 16th, 2024, Chainwire

Decentralized video conferencing company Huddle01 brings onboard Shruti Appiah as their first Chief Economist. Appiah brings a wealth of expertise and vision to the Huddle01 team as a pioneer in the field of crypto-economic system design and her prior work as a strategic product leader at some of the most impactful blockchain firms.

Huddle01 offers decentralized, community-driven conferencing solutions. It launched an innovative decentralized real-time communication (dRTC) Network that prioritizes user-powered web communication, enabling anyone to provide communication bandwidth and earn rewards. The Huddle01 dRTC Network will be open to all participants and operates on a self-sustaining basis. Through decentralized architecture, Huddle01 addresses pressing challenges such as privacy, scalability, and reliability that are inherent in existing WebRTC solutions.

Before taking on the role of Chief Economist at Huddle01, Appiah contributed significantly to the company as an advisor. She spearheaded the systems design of Layer01, an execution proofing protocol, and the dRTC network, the backbone of the conferencing solution.

Her foray into Web3 happened serendipitously during a “curiosity marathon” on distributed autonomous systems back at the University of Waterloo. At the time, she was also invested in fighting climate change by bringing environmental and social responsibility to shareholder capitalism. The two worlds met when she realized Ethereum could serve as the foundation to craft socioeconomic operating systems with bottom-up governance.

In the fall of 2016, she joined ConsenSys, the hub of innovation on real-life applications of Ethereum. The company comprised almost all mission-oriented developers and researchers. She worked with these budding teams to productize their early-stage technologies to user-facing products ready to go to market. To Appiah, ConsenSys felt like the perfect petri dish to build a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO), a vision shared by its founder, Joe Lubin. It was in designing this system that she discovered the great gap in economic design - the lack of verification and validation. A big proponent of engineering ethics and responsibility, Appiah required that any new economic model must be rigorously tested and validated to ensure positive emergent phenomena. To achieve this, she conceptualized and developed the first multi-agent simulation of a DAO in an early 2017 paper. Today, agent-based simulations are a cornerstone in validating cryptoeconomic systems.

The 2017 boom followed a period of careful investment. Appiah advised startups, helping them substantiate their claims using these simulations, sometimes designing novel economic primitives to push the industry forward. She joined forces with BlockScience to scale up the implementation of larger projects. “Open sourcing my work and public education have proved great gateways to building the field of crypto-economics and token engineering. There are 8 billion agents besides me.” She spent the summer of 2019 at Santa Fe Institute’s summer school to further the field of cryptoeconomics, taking inspiration from Dr. David Wolpert and Dr. Brian Arthur’s complexity economics.

In working with so many web3 startups, Appiah observed that a lot of these protocols were not seeing the light of day in terms of user adoption. Thus, her focus turned towards impact, and she joined Input Output Global as Head of Product and seeded a developer ecosystem with startups such as TxPipe, which built the most advanced software in the ecosystem to this day. She led the team to bring the ability to develop applications and programmability to Cardano. Following this release, Cardano hit its all time high.

As Huddle01’s Chief Economist, Appiah will be responsible for protocol economics, research, and systems design. Her vision is to make the dRTC network the communication protocol for the earth and beyond. Communication backs humanity’s collective intelligence, and as we advance into the space age, we need to be ready with building blocks that are democratic and equitable.

About Huddle01

Huddle01 was founded at the 2020 ETHGlobal hackathon by Ayush Ranjan and Susmit Lavania with a vision to make real-time communication open, secure, and borderless by leveraging blockchain & crypto-economics. The company offers decentralized conferencing solutions thanks to its dRTC Network. Users have clocked in over 1 million minutes of meetings. The infrastructure (developer SDKs) has over 100 projects built on top of it in categories like social, DAO tooling, education, and the metaverse.


Colin Landers