As outlined in the Path to Increasing Decentralization within Radicle, “transitioning development to the DAO” is a core part of the Radicle vision. The Radicle Foundation was created to “support the development of resilient and humane software infrastructures”, such as Radicle, by supporting the development of operational, technical, and social scaffolding required for managing decentralized networks. While the Foundation currently funds and manages most core Radicle development, the goal has always been to ultimately fund all project development via the Treasury of the RadicleDAO.
As we find ourselves one year since decentralizing the network with $RAD, it’s time to start the transition of core Radicle development to the DAO. This post is the Radicle Foundation & Governance Core Team’s action plan for taking the first steps towards making Radicle a truly open-source, community-led, and self-sustaining network for software collaboration.
In total, Radicle governance has seen six proposals make it to on-chain voting, with only one failing due to lack of participation. Out of ~5.6k RAD holders, we only have 63 on-chain voters and 116 members in our Snapshot space. On average, proposals have 5.075% of participation from 17 unique addresses. Since launching the token, however, we have seen a decrease in participation (44 addresses voting in our first proposal vs. 11 address in our most recent proposal) across the board.
Despite participation issues, governance has been working. The community has been successfully activated in the following ways:
The creation of the Radicle Governance Working Group
The deployment of $1M of capital from the Treasury into the Radicle Grants Program (RGP)
The deployment of $500k of capital from the Treasury into the Radicle Ecosystem Growth Fund (EGF)
The removal of the name registration fee from the Radicle Registrar.
- Decision-making power and influence decentralizes away from founding team to active contributors and users
- All project development is coordinated & funded via the RadicleDAO
- The Radicle Foundation exists in a limited capacity, as an entity that safeguards Radicle trademarks and can be funded by the DAO (like any other contributor) to accomplish any offline activities and anything the DAO can’t do
- Treasury assets can fund the growth of the project for the foreseeable future
- All active contributors and RAD holders have (and can earn!) influence in the RadicleDAO
- Governance can continue to function successfully without such a strong reliance on the active participation of early team members & supporters (e.g. investors)
- The DAO is technically, politically, and socially resilient - it is uncapturable and resistant to collusion
Our governance goals will continue to develop as we continue to learn from our contributors and greater community. Feel free to drop suggestions & comments here on what else you believe should be incorporated and/or improved!
We’d like to have the scaffolding in place to transition Core Teams to the DAO by November 2022 and initial teams transitioned by February 2023.
To coordinate this transition, we are introducing four workstreams that represent important “work to be done” to meet Radicle’s governance goals. Included here are a set of guiding questions that will inform the work for each workstream. Each of these workstreams will be followed by their own post, with designated leads from Radicle community. In these posts, workstream leads will coordinate deliverables & present an action plan for next steps. They will also create space for community participation.
Objective: Transition all Foundation-funded Core Teams (and Foundation responsibilities) to a DAO-funded organizational structure. Core Teams become self-managed entities that are funded via the Treasury. Their budgets and objectives require community review & approval.
The goal here is to support a thriving ecosystem of Core Teams with coordination & structure instead of hierarchy & control. This will require technical & social infrastructure in place that can support a decentralized network of development teams each managing their own relationship with the DAO. The key deliverables include:
- How do Core Teams manage themselves within the DAO? How do they set & report on objectives? How do they scope & manage budgets?
- Which responsibilities should the DAO take over from the Foundation? Which should it not?
- What social processes & accountability structures are required to ensure a healthy and trusted relationship between Core Teams & the greater DAO/community?
- How will Core Teams be onboarded/offboarded?
- Where is community review required and how is it conducted?
- How are conflicts resolved?
- How is efficiency, transparency, and accessibility ensured?
- Guiding Questions:
- Operational Framework
- Guiding Question: What legal support, guidance, or consultation do Radicle contributors need to work under the RadicleDAO?
- Technical Framework
- Guiding Question: What “out of box” technical implementation should be required/suggested for Core Teams as they set up their own operational structure? How can a secure, trustless and permissionless environment be ensured while supporting autonomy within Core Teams?
- Operational Framework
- Guiding Question: What pieces of the Radicle stack should be employed in the new Org Design?
Objective: Devise and implement an active strategy for distributing RAD token rewards among network stakeholders
An informed strategy for token distributions from the Radicle Treasury to contributors, users, and ecosystem partners.
- Contributors: How can token rewards be used to attract, retain, and incentivize Radicle contributors & squads?
- Users: What does it mean to go “beyond the airdrop” and intentionally allocate tokens to users to support adoption & growth?
- Ecosystem Partners: How can DAO2DAO collaborations (e.g. token swaps) and resilient ecosystem partnerships be supported with token distributions?
- Guiding Questions:
Objective: Design and implement a strategy for distributing non-financialized governing power within the Radicle ecosystem
To truly be a self-sustaining, community-owned & governed, free and open source project, there must be an additional governance mechanism that allows for a non-financialized form of influence that can be distributed and earned. The reason is that influence in the project is currently disproportionately distributed among early team members & supporters, i.e. RAD holders. While a plan to distribute tokens to contributors is in development (see Workstream #2), participation within the DAO must be increased by designing a way to distribute non-financialized governing power.
A new mechanism/system/tool for distributing influence that can be deployed in the current Radicle governance system
- What is the design of a layer that interoperates with our token voting system?
- Who should have influence in the RadicleDAO? Why and what kind of influence?
- What is the design of a dynamic & decentralized system that will scale as the ecosystem grows?
- How is the system managed/controlled? How can the DAO ensure it can upgrade/change the system?
- What tools/primitives should be used (e.g. NFTs, Coordinape etc…)?
- Guiding Questions:
Objective: Do an “audit” of our governance tooling stack, processes, and parameters to ensure a well-functioning and accessible DAO.
- Guiding Question: What new DAO tools can be used to improve Radicle governance processes?
Set of design criteria for well-functioning and accessible governance (e.g. reimbursed voting fees, discourse/discord integrations etc…)
- Guiding Questions: What pain points do governance participants have? How should we re-evaluate our governance parameters (e.g. proposal & quorum thresholds)?
Each workstream will be broken out into it’s own Discourse post to dive deeper into deliverables & next steps. They will be linked in the discussion of this post!
Have feedback or questions? Drop them here! We’d love to hear what our community & contributors think about the direction of the RadicleDAO.
Interested in contributing to a workstream? There will be plenty of opportunity for community participation. Share your ideas here