When GTC launched in May, governance over the Gitcoin platform was handed over to the community via a group of individuals known as Stewards. Stewards are trusted community leaders with delegated voting power to make decisions on behalf of the community.
This post looks at the potential creation of a steward council as a move towards a more active and engaged participation mechanic in governance. This council will consists of the most engaged stewards as exemplified by the engagement scorecards with a rating above 8/10. An open application process will also be in place for community members to join the forum provided their engagement score is 8/10. (*details on engagement scores below)
Note that GTC allocations will be distributed to the forum via a number of mechanisms which will evolve over time.
This proposal is split into the following sections:
- Motivation: Why setup a steward council
- Specification: A roadmap for implementing mechanics
- Distribution: allocations for stewards work based on engagement (measured via the engagement cards)
The various sections of this proposal will be divided into separate Snapshot polls so any section that may require further discussion does not block other moving parts.
Over the past six months, the Gitcoin community and Stewards have been working tirelessly to build the first pillars of Gitcoin governance. There has been a lot of engagement on the Gitcoin forum and Discord, as well as wider discussions but the need for a sustainable engagement model is clear. Not just for Gitcoin DAO but DAOs in general.
The reality is there is just so much happening in crypto and the DAO space so there needs to be a way to not only keep track of it all but enable engagement through simple, non overly taxing yet highly valuable engagement flows. This is a first step towards that.
While we’re grateful for the hard work and time that has been committed thus far, we are swiftly realizing all of the Stewards have jobs, projects and commitments outside of Gitcoin which demand their attention. We have found that it is important to more actively involve not just those Stewards who are participating in Gitcoin day to day, but also those who can offer more of an outsiders’ perspective.
For this reason, we believe that it is both necessary and justified to begin rewarding Stewards for their time and energy in the form of additional governance rights.
The principle is simple: those who have participated in such a nascent system and are shaping its core functions would be some of the best people to guide it to a stage where broader contributions are possible.
It’s worth noting that these rewards are intentionally distributed in the form of governance weight with no economic value.
The first Stewards Council will be active from the time the proposal passes for a period of 120 days, with an evaluation in view of potential extension at the 90 day mark. The 120 day cadence matches the quarterly events in the Gitcoin DAO calendar such as grants rounds and offers a great opportunity to reflect, expand and amplify the mission of GD.
A formal structure to future forums will be presented at the end of the 120 day mark, assuming the model is deemed valuable by the community and any essential and valuable learnings are incorporated in the model.
Steward council responsibilities:
Keeping a ‘docket’ of ongoing proposals / their current status
Ensuring proposals follow template(s) / creating any necessary adjustments to template(s) (a proposal geared towards proposal simplification and standardisation will be posed shortly)
Coming to an initial y/n answer on the proposal itself
Bi-weekly sync calls for better alignment & broader DAO strategy discussion
This splits the responsibilities of the stewards as follows and ensures a more manageable curated governance flow:
Steward forum: governance contribution / decision making
Steward top 5: governance ratification / execution (putting proposals up on Tally for now)
The selection will also take into account information from the steward engagement cards - in time, this will need to include better/finer metrics:
- Evaluate how often the steward votes with the majority in Snapshot votes
- Track not only the number of forum posts, but the steward’s reputation on the forum based on likes and replies
- Better curation of voting engagement needs - notifications when a new prop is up and then measure the voting speed
Community members who sit outside of this threshold are welcome to submit a proposal to join, with incoming applications reviewed by the existing Stewards group (or a committee dedicated to onboarding).
This is the current format of the steward engagement cards - https://stewards.eth.limo/
The aim is to diversify and expand measured engagement angles and even have the stewards update their cards with relevant information in the context of the council mandate and their tenure in the council. As a first step towards this, we will look at a baseline engagement score of 8 out of a possible 10 for participation in the forum.
The proposal is that a pool of GTC is allocated across the Stewards council for the term. This is to cover gas costs incurred in voting and offer fair allocation for the group as long as they fulfil their functions outlined above.
Separate Snapshot proposals will be made outlining further detail around these allocations, their timelines and their distribution.
To begin with, we can look at three options in terms of compensation:
A. 5,000 GTC
B. 10,000 GTC
C. 15,000 GTC
The options are there for the community to assess what a fair level of compensation might be in the context of the steward forum and its mandate. Please include thoughts on these levels in comments.
This proposal looks to start a conversation around a Steward Council that would use representation and incentives as a main driver for sustained and increased engagement in the governance process.
It is designed to be a first attempt at a more engaged governance dynamic and by no means the only step forward. I would like to see a discussion around this followed by experimentation with a first forum. Lessons learnt will not only serve GD but the DAO space at large in terms of evolving DAO tooling and progressing our ecosystem.