From sociologist to entrepreneur, Katrina Donaghy, CEO and co-founder of Australian blockchain company Civic Ledger, has had a diverse career.
When blockchain found Katrina Donaghy in late 2015, it changed the course of her life. “I realised that it was a very powerful technology that would have a profound impact on the way we participate in society and how economic institutions would change,” she explains.
A year later, she co-founded Civic Ledger, which builds modern platforms and marketplaces with blockchain technology to solve some of the planet’s most serious challenges. As CEO, co-founder and company director, she’s involved in everything from culture and strategy to finance and business development.
Right now, the company is looking at how blockchain technology can improve on current market mechanisms to ensure the sustainable sharing of water, particularly in agriculture.
Trust in tech
Katrina sees blockchain as an enabler to help society on an infinite number of levels. “Humans still need to be in control as technology advances, and not the other way round… So, as the digital era of the fourth industrial revolution scales, there is so much focus on trust,” she says.
This means exciting career opportunities in philosophy, ethics, psychology, informatics, product development, customer experience, data and system interoperability, shifting from human reading of law to machine reading of law (“rules as code”), digital assets, decentralised finance and automation, according to Katrina. She believes that story-telling and creatives are very valuable in this space too.
Her advice for those who want to get into tech? Don’t limit yourself. “Whether you want to work under the hood in a development role or hold technology accountable through ethics and governance, have ambitions to build your own technology company, or create beautiful applications that empower people – there are no limits to where your place will be. The only limits are when you say to yourself that you have no place.”
Katrina Donaghy’s study and career path
- Bachelor of Arts (Humanities), Cultural Politics and Political Theory, Griffith University
- Graduate Certificate in Entrepreneurial and Venture Development, Griffith University
- Co-Founder, openCoLab
- Program Mentor, Blockchain RMIT online
- CEO and Co-Founder, Civic Ledger
This story originally appears in Careers with STEM: Technology 2021.
Author: Louise Meers
Louise is the production editor for Careers with STEM. She has a journalism degree from the University of Technology, Sydney and has spent over a decade writing for youth. She is passionate about inspiring young people to achieve their biggest goals and build a better future.