GG20 OSS Funding Rounds & Eligibility Criteria

The Gitcoin Grants Program champions the development of Open-Source Software (OSS) across the wider Web3 ecosystem.

Our eligibility criteria aims to ensure that all participating grantees adhere to the highest standards of ethical conduct, community values, and the ethos of OSS. This framework is designed to nurture innovation and facilitate meaningful contributions to the open-source community.

The eligibility criteria for the upcoming GG20 are as follows:

Ethical and Community Standards

  • No Hateful Content: We firmly stand against discrimination and hate speech.
  • Deceiving Users: Prohibited is any content that could harm users or lead to unintended consequences.
  • Falsification: Attempts to falsify contributions, including Sybil attacks or other manipulative practices, are strictly banned.
  • Fraud & Impersonation: Projects must accurately represent their affiliation and intentions to maintain transparency and trust.
  • No Quid Pro Quo & Bribery: Incentives in exchange for donations are disallowed, maintaining the integrity of the contribution process.
  • Advertising Restrictions: Utilizing grants for direct promotional activities or sales is prohibited.
  • Funding Caps: Projects with significant external funding may be reconsidered to ensure equitable distribution of resources.
  • Legal Compliance: Mandatory is the adherence to all applicable laws and regulations for participation.

Open-Source Principles and Project Activity

  • Licensing Requirement: Projects must be fully open source, offering “source available” for anyone to fork, modify, and redistribute, embodying the essence of open-source collaboration.
  • Activity Metrics: Demonstrated established and ongoing development activity as evidenced by GitHub commit history.

This eligibility framework is devised to ensure that the projects we support are aligned with the foundational values of the Gitcoin Grants Program and actively contribute to the growth and integrity of the OSS ecosystem. Projects that violate these guidelines will face disqualification from consideration, underscoring our dedication to maintaining the highest standards of ethical conduct and community engagement.

Projects fulfilling the licensing requirements and displaying sufficient activity metrics will be directly approved. Those partially meeting these standards will be subject to a manual review process, while projects failing to satisfy any of the criteria will be deemed ineligible.

OSS Rounds

When applications open, the program will feature four rounds within Grants Stack. Each round will feature eligibility requirements tailored to that segment’s unique objectives and needs. These include the following:

  • Hackathon Alumni
  • dApps & Apps
  • Web3 Infrastructure
  • Developer Tooling and Libraries

The allocations for the rounds are as follows:

  • Hackathon Alumni: $100K
  • dApps & Apps: $300K
  • Web3 Infrastructure: $300K
  • Developer Tooling and Libraries: $300K

Applicants are limited to submitting their projects for a single round of funding. It is recommended that grantees choose the round that most closely matches their project’s primary mission and goals. By doing so, we aim to provide focused and impactful support and ensure resources are directed where they can achieve the greatest effect.

Hackathon Alumni

Objective: To support projects emerging from recent hackathons, showcasing the potential for significant OSS contributions.

Target Areas for Funding:

  • Innovative solutions or prototypes developed during hackathons.
  • Initiatives addressing clear needs within the OSS or tech ecosystem.

Round Specific Criteria:

  • Participated in a recognized hackathon last year.
  • Evidence of development progress post-hackathon.
  • Must provide proof of participation in a hackathon in the last 18 months where the output aligns with Open-Source Principles and Project Activity criteria.

dApps & Apps

Objective: To accelerate the adoption and development of dApps & Apps offering novel utilities or services within the ecosystem.

Target Areas for Funding:

  • User-centric dApps & Apps enhancing Web3 accessibility and usability.
  • dApps & Apps contributing to financial inclusion, education, and social impact are encouraged to apply.

Round Specific Criteria:

  • Demonstrable user interface design and positive user experience.
  • Innovative application use cases expanding the OSS ecosystem’s reach.

Web3 Infrastructure

Objective: To strengthen the Ethereum ecosystem’s foundational infrastructure by supporting projects crucial for its development, scalability, and security.

Target Areas for Funding:

  • Core Client Teams & Development: Support for teams behind essential Ethereum clients (e.g., Geth, Nethermind) and projects enhancing core network functionality.
  • Staking Infrastructure and Diversity: Initiatives improving staking processes and promoting client diversity to strengthen network security and resilience.
  • Decentralized Identity and Cross-Layer Solutions: Projects focused on decentralized identity solutions, cross-layer interoperability, and seamless token transfers, enhancing user experience and network efficiency.
  • Security and Scalability Innovations: Research and development aimed at bolstering the network’s security through EIPs and scalability solutions like sharding and rollups.
  • Wallet Security and Privacy Technologies: Innovations in wallet security, recovery solutions, privacy pools, and zero-knowledge proofs, aiming to protect users and advance voting mechanisms.
  • Standardization and Future-Proofing: Efforts to standardize crucial technologies and develop forward-thinking solutions, such as account abstraction and statelessness.

Round Specific Criteria:

  • Infrastructure Impact: Projects must demonstrate a significant contribution to the Ethereum network’s infrastructure, addressing both foundational needs and innovative solutions to current challenges.
  • Engagement in Pioneering Development: A focus on pioneering technologies or approaches that promise to elevate the Ethereum ecosystem, particularly in enhancing privacy, interoperability, and user experience.

Developer Tooling and Libraries

Objective: Improve developer efficiency in the OSS and Web3 ecosystems through supportive tooling and libraries.

Target Areas for Funding:

  • Development environments, frameworks, and testing tools for Web3.
  • Libraries that enable secure, efficient smart contract development.

Round Specific Criteria:

  • Significant reduction of development barriers or enhancement of project efficiency.
  • Demonstrated support and usage within the developer community.

Evaluation Process

Our evaluation process combines quantitative measures, such as adherence to open-source licensing and active development indicators, with qualitative assessments, including the project’s contribution to the OSS ecosystem, community engagement, and innovation.


By establishing clear criteria and specific targets for each funding round, the GG20 OSS funding initiative aims to foster innovation, enhance community engagement, and promote a transparent and inclusive selection process across the OSS ecosystem. This approach ensures support for diverse projects, contributing to the growth and sustainability of open-source and Web3 technologies.


Just a suggestion: If possible we should have different tracks for applications / SDKs that are currently live (atleast for Applications) and the ones that are under construction. The not live ones (or under construction status ones) can be a part of Hackathon Track.

The idea is to,

  1. Make sure all the projects are already shipped.
  2. Drive user growth to existing live products. This way if people enjoy the product, they can go ahead check it out and then contribute to it.

I know this will give birth to new issues but perhaps they can be solved by other criterias as I feel this is need for the overall ecosystem.


Thanks for sharing this @Sov I am a little confused about what the 4 Project Activity Criteria are?


Thanks for flagging this!

In a previous draft, we had more detailed criteria for activity metrics, but we decided to loosen this to make it easier for grantees. The language you flagged was an artifact of this earlier version and is now corrected.


Thanks for your feedback on this. I wanted to address each point with our reasoning:

  • Make sure all the projects are already shipped: We want to support projects across all stages of development, from inception to launch. This inclusivity allows us to nurture ideas that could transform the ecosystem, even if they haven’t shipped yet.
  • Drive user growth to existing live products: While we aim to direct attention to live projects, our broader goal encompasses fostering the entire development lifecycle, including the phases leading up to launch. This approach helps ensure that projects are well-equipped to engage users and drive growth effectively when projects go live.

Let me know if any follow on questions, thanks again!


Excited about this new format to support OSS builders!

On the hackathon round – I wonder if we could also consider recent graduates from accelerator/incubator programs, like Kernal or Backdrop? Seems to be in the same spirit as hackathons.


as a former operator I’d ask if the QPQ rules are strict or can be intepreted different by its spirit?

we actually encountered many projects say they’d give back to their supporters and donors in the future (which seems legitimate argument) , without explicitly saying there will be any return for donation, however in many cases it just serve as a disguise for QPQ - especially for media and education projects

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Excited to see GG20 doubling down on OSS - and establishing clearer criteria about what it means to be an “active” OSS project! I’m also keen to track cohorts of hackathon alumni.

Looking forward to GG20 :soon:


love this suggestion! this can open up a lot of doors too. we may have to see how to verify - basically have an ironed out application for projects to reduce back and forth in cross-checking projects claiming to have participated.


Thanks for clarifying Sov, I have a question regarding the stage of the project for application.

We just completed the design of B<>rder/ess App for Gamifying web3 education, and also just started development.

Do we have to have completely shipped before we apply?
Or can we apply with the various milestones we have completed and are yet to complete?


Thanks for the note and interest!

We’re looking to fund projects across the spectrum no matter what building stage they are in. If you meet the criteria in one of the rounds, please apply when applications open on 4/3!


Thanks for sharing, github is a very good environment for collaboration, creating a strong dev community and promoting high collaboration.

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We have App where all the code is open sourced but APIs are called/used are encrypted because we are paying for those APIS. Is this violating the Gitcoin selection criteria?


Yes, good question. You would qualify, and we encourage you to apply for the round that best fits your project.

Looking forward to seeing you in GG20!!

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Hey @Sov thanks for laying this out so clearly.

We have made all our smart contracts governing $EARTH and a couple others open source in our public repo but the day to day commits were not made on the same repo, we built and tested it offline before putting it up and deploying.

Would this be a concern while applying for OSS ?


Thanks for this!

To answer your question, our eligibility criteria are designed to target projects that embrace an open-source ethos of building in public for the entire journey. When projects do most of their work in private repos, it is difficult to determine if they are legitimate or if they forked someone else’s work and just uploaded it to a public repo to try to get a grant.

In cases where it is hard to establish a project’s OSS track record, we will need a more thorough review to determine if it meets the spirit of the round.


tuyệt vời tôi rất thích điều này,có vẻ thú vị đây

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When it was announced that there was not any community rounds involved in GG20 we weren’t sure if we were going to participate. It looks like we are eligible for this category so we will apply for this round. Honestly, I think we may have just skipped over this part when reading over the announcement initially.

This may be an interesting dynamic to participate in this round during the next month of work for us that lays ahead.
Looking forward to an amazing year!


Awesome :clap: looking forward to seeing your application come through!


Love these categories, especially how projects that were earlier in community rounds but have an active dapp under development can still be part of it. I expect evaluation will be much more streamlined going ahead since GitHub is the single source of truth for whether a project is active or not.

Look forward to the round and these changes, especially how Allo V2 is going to perform