The Pocket Network
In order to track and issue educational and other credentials across a lifelong learner’s entire learning experience, Pocket relies on a network of trusted issuers, which are disclosed to all accepters of Pocket credentials. Anyone with a Pocket identity can attempt to connect to a network member, but must be recognized by that member’s system of record of having an affiliation.
The Pocket network follows the standard SSI ecosystem model but layers in the Pocket platform in the provider role:
Credential issuers are the institutions and organizations connected to Pocket that can issue credentials via Pocket’s platform. Pocket integrates with organizations’ systems of record, for example, the student information system (SIS) and learning management system (LMS) of a higher education institution, in order to determine what credentials should be issued to a learner or even an employee.
Credential Issuers have access to all the services provided by the Pocket Platform via Pocket admin console. This includes all universal schemas for records provided by Pocket for credentials of all types, and the Pocket Strata data, integration, business logic and analytics services. Pocket sets up and manages all identities, issuance, revocation, and other credential functionality on behalf of the issuer.
Credential holders are the users of Pocket. When they connect their identity to a Pocket Network issuer, any records they have will be issued as verifiable credentials and stored the the wallet managed by Pocket.
Additionally, Pocket functions as much more than just a wallet, but as a connection to the rich metadata for each credential supported by the Pocket Strata data service. It also integrates with third parties and other credential providers, such as Badgr, the uAchieve course equivalency database, custom endpoint supported by individual institutions, and other integrations for skills and portfolio content.
Credential holders can share and present their credentials to credential viewers, who can verify the presented credentials, as well as access further information on the credential using their connection to Pocket Strata data and analytics. A credential viewer can be a potential employer, another Pocket user or an institution that already has an issuer role.
Due to the system of trust managed by Pocket, any viewer can fully accept any verified credential as being valid and having been formally recognized by the issuing organization as the specific achievement or other record.
A credential viewer need not be a fully connected member of the Pocket Network, but in order to leverage the extended data and analytics provided by the Pocket Strata services, the viewer/verifier must have an actual Pocket network identity.
As an ecosystem provider, Pocket creates and manages all technical aspects of the ecosystem, including the definition of all credential schemas, data integration with systems of record, credential issuance rules and business logic, and extended rich data for credentials, as well as accessing credentials as data for analytics and reporting. Pocket also provides the Pocket mobile app as a wallet and data app for learners, and administrative access to the pocket servers to Issuers and connected Viewers.
The trust registry will be a service administered by Pocket that will allow Pocket members to view and set relationships with other members of the trusted network. We intend to develop this in collaboration with ASU’s Trusted Learner Network.