Introducing v2 of the Steward Council & future plans

Introducing v2 of the Steward Council & future plans

tl;dr

This update seeks to inform the community about the results of a Steward Council v1 retroactive assessment, outline key priority areas for v2 of the Steward Council, and to announce the members of the Steward Council for the next 180 days.

For background, you can explore the initial proposal introducing the Steward Council here, as well as the The Steward Council - Formation & Mandate here.

This update is split into the following sections:

  • Steward Council v1 Retroactive
  • Announcing members of the v2 Stewards Council

Steward Council v1 Retroactive results

The Steward Council was authorized via the The Steward Council Election & Mandate snapshot vote on March 11, 2022 for 180 days. As the period closes on September 7, 2022, and to prepare for the next session, a retro was conducted to capture lessons learned and identify areas of improvement.

The results are captured in this slide deck, but can be summarized in terms of what was done well, and what work still needs to be completed. Data was collected via one-on-one interviews, a qualitative survey, and a 1 hour review with the Stewards Council. The data collected, the input from the surveys, as well as a recording of the working group are all captured in the slide deck.

What worked well:

  • We found a way to judiciously get the right people on the council
  • We built a respectful and professional group to debate difficult topics
  • We delivered a container and cadence for getting to a workable budget
  • The team standardized the budget building process making a big difference
  • We were able to identify the most important concerns

One of the key outputs from the retro was to identify what work still needed to be done, and what (if any) adjustments still need to be made. Through the discussions and a quick voting mechanism - we identified the list below:

The work to be completed:

  • Continue refining/simplifying the budgeting process
  • Clarify and optimize how members roll in and out of the Stewards council
  • Migrate topics to “board level” strategic discussions vs. tactical recommendations
  • Update and refine the mandate of the Steward council, incl remuneration of its members
  • Revise the steward health cards & Steward Council selection algorithm

Additionally, it should be noted that DAO Operation have identified the following related OKRs which will be delivered by the Governance team during Season 15:

  • KR1: Create a clearly understood onboarding and incentivization process.
  • KR2: Launch a Governance Documentation Hub for new and existing stewards.
  • KR3: 80% of stewards and workstream leads view steward meeting structure, pacing and content favorably.
  • KR4: 80% of top stewards vote on 100% of formal S15 proposals.

Announcing members of the v2 Stewards Council

Recall this council looks to elevate the participation of the most engaged stewards as exemplified by the engagement scorecards and looking at stewards with a rating above 8/10. There have been no changes in the Steward Council selection methodology for now. For background, the current methodology is documented here and revised here.

In future, we do plan to continue improving the steward health cards including proposals related to the Steward Council selection process, but no changes were made in this selection.

The current lineup of Stewards with scores of 8/10 or over during the past 180 days is as follows:

This second Steward Council will be active until March 06, 2023 following the 180 day period as laid out in this original post. This Council will take us through the end of Season 16, and comfortably into Season 17 before transition. If there are any adjustments to the current format or mandate, those changes will be brought to a community vote.

Finally, we would like to express our appreciation and gratitude to all the Stewards for their contributions to our first Council - both those who will remain on the Council, and those who are departing. You developed a professional working group that has made a significant contribution to the success of Gitcoin, and we thank you.

We are looking forward to your comments. If you are interested in becoming a Steward and potentially joining the next Stewards council, you can apply here.

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Hey - we wanted to say thank you once again to the folks from the first Steward Council - this group of dedicated folks added order to chaos and helped nail down some of the trickiest budgeting and brought in some of the best ideas across web3. Thanks.

@DisruptionJoe
krrisis
@seedphrase
@bobjiang
@tjayrush
Sirlupinwatson
@HelloShreyas
@lefterisjp
linda
@griff
@Fishbiscuit
kyle
@austingriffith

And, finally a really BIG thank you to Simona @Pop - your relentless drive to get this council setup and running on a solid cadence was a game changer. Thank you.

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@shawn16400 could you elaborate on how this lineup of stewards was selected? I’ve tried to follow the back links to the past post and the steward report cards and I’m not seeing how you arrived at this line-up.

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hi @lthrift thanks for the question. The selection of the Seward Council is an algorithm - a basic calculation of a persons average governance & Gitcoin participation over the past 6 months.

the calculation is:
V0.7 + F_t1.1 + F_t_p1.5 + F_p0.7 + F_p_p*1 + W

Where:
V = Vote participation on Snapshot (only proposals with >0.5M GTC are counted)
F_t = Forum Topics initiated (excluding the “Proposal Discussion” category)
F_t_p = Forum Topics initiated in the “Proposal Discussion” category
F_p = Forum posts (excluding the “Proposal Discussion” category)
F_p_p = Forum posts in the “Proposal Discussion” category
W = Workstream involvement. Lead role adds 5p and contributor adds 3p to health.

This new 180 day look back view can be seen in here - and this 180 day look back view will be added to the standard daostewards.xyz site shortly.

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Thanks, that’s helpful!

I noticed that the workstream data point is incorrect for many stewards here. How are those being populated and how could we improve the accuracy?

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Hi @lthrift - thanks for bringing that one up, I will have a look and make any needed adjustments. thanks!

It may be also worth noting that a couple of the folks selected are no longer participating in or with the DAO (the joys of a lagging indication for selection process).

Have we confirmed that each of these people selected want to be included?

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hi Kyle - for the new additions to the council - I have messages out for confirmation, and have already removed one candidate who said they no were longer interested. One of the improvement areas we identified in the Retro was how Stewards move on, and off of the Council. Given anyone can stop participation at any point, we would do well to build an offboarding process, triggers for that process, and what we should do if participation were to fall below a specific level. To your question, I have not reached out to returning members asking for confirmation, but I can do that now.

Hey @shawn16400 @kyle I was gonna ask about that actually. I have activity in governance and enough GTC delegated but I would still like to be given the choice to participate or not to the steward council.

At this point I would like to remain a steward but step down from the council as it’s demanding time-wise, compensation is not enough and perhaps replacing me with someone more aligned with the way gitcoin is ran right now would be better for the project.

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Hey all!

Thanks for putting this together, I think it’s a really great starting point. One thing I noticed that the current council only reflects a couple of workstreams (mainly FDD and DAO Ops) and misses quite a few highly active stewards. As @kyle noted some folks are also no longer working for the DAO although they may have been when the snapshot was taken.

Especially given that we’re talking about this council being in place for a relatively long period (180 days) I’d like to propose an amended selection process, based on the success we’ve seen in CSDO and other governance bodies. In fact, we could view “SC” as principally guiding strategic decisions while “CS” guides tactical ones. Take this as just one option as we continue to iterate towards the best possible stewards council.

Step 1: Workstream Nomination. Each workstream nominates (via any process they see fit, one lead for each meeting (monthly). They are required to have prepared a list of key strategy questions (e.g. fraud might ask ‘should we have an open data service that helps us streamline Sybil data analysis’; PGF might ask ‘what kinds of rounds should the program run that it isn’t thinking about and why’; GPC might ask ‘how do we ensure we’re building best with the community’). Workstreams risk slashing if they don’t come through with these questions consistently.

Step 2a Steward Nomination, Each workstream nominates at most 3 stewards to go into a pool. Each steward must be a non-active workstream member (i.e. an “independent” member). This allows us to bring in folks that can provide strong external guidance and relevant domain expertise that might not be present internally. We can also require that selected stewards meet some threshold of activity or delegation.

Step 2b: Steward Nomination. Chosen stewards go into a QV, and workstreams nominate 3 members each to vote. We can even dogfood our own quadratic voting site for this.

Step 3: Ratification. We elect that council in a forum post + snapshot vote as usual. Crucially, if at any time someone needs to step down we can simply use the previous vote rankings to determine who might take their place.

IMO this wouldn’t take very long to organize and might yield better results than relying mainly on the health cards. For context, I originally designed the health cards as a way to track total steward engagement, but didn’t necessarily intend for it to be used in this kind of election process when I first conceived of it (though I think it’s a good input). Would love any thoughts and feedback on this approach.

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Hey Scott, thanks for the conversation. As I surveyed existing steward council members, it became clear that the objectives of SC need deeper clarification.

The mechanism for deciding who is on the council is important, but if we are not clear on what the council does, the what will be invented by the who. We will get a result, but not sure if it will be the right result.

Most all the feedback I saw agrees with your assessment that we need to move the SC to a strategic posture, and I think we can afford to be a bit descriptive here. I sent a draft proposal over to @krrisis on a proposal that addresses 1) what the council should, and should not do 2) council renumeration and 3) how we decide who is on the council - which is a copy past of your proposal above.

Beginning with the end in mind, I think we can set ourselves up with finding the right people, to do the right work. Thanks again for the direction, and I am looking forward to iterating through this with you and incorporating broad feedback.

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The mechanism for deciding who is on the council is important, but if we are not clear on what the council does, the what will be invented by the who. We will get a result, but not sure if it will be the right result.

Definitely agree on this and glad to hear we’re thinking carefully about what the council will be doing. I think I skipped over this since from my conversation with @krrisis it sounded like we were on the right track there (and this may have been informed by your proposal).

Thanks for all of the work towards this :pray:

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It’s amazing to see all this fresh and constructive energy and convos taking place! :blue_heart:

As some people may know, I’m quite passionate about Gitcoin DAO and what it could grow into.
IMHO(as a person that worked and joined over 10 daos, all with over 1 m$ in funding and with more than 100 members each) I can subjectivelly say that we are one of “the flagship DAOs” in the space.

We are not perfect and kinda face some of the issues that all DAOs face, BUT what could differentiate us(on a DAO level) could be the solutions that we implement to overcome those barriers. Constructive creativity bares a huge role here. I also think that conflict management should be included in the convo. I sometimes feel that people run away from conflict, but conflict should be discussed in a safe space because this is not a zero sum game, but a positive sum one=> meaning that both parties could end up winning if the “conflict” is managed properly.

What can I say…It’s just incredibly exciting to see what the SC will grow into :robot: and how it could forever shape the quadratic lands

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Thanks for creating such a knowledge/information enhancing Blog.

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Thank @shawn16400 for your hard working (v1 retro and v2 intro)!

I agree with @ceresstation for the current situations (most steward council members from FDD or DAO Ops). so I have only one concerns,

how could we (steward council) care about other workstreams like (PGF, MC, MMM, GPC etc)?

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Hi Bob

Great question IMO! This independence can be provided by metagovernance DAOs like Wildfire (full disclosure - I’m a member).

Overall however web3 does not have much of a model to fund such efforts. Wildfire is a bit unique in that the founding team was able to summons hundreds of web3 enthusiasts to assist - and then did a screening to select and help to assign operators to various projects that the founders - :fire:_ :fire: - wanted to support.

I’m one of a handful of people working in public goods. There are also professionals working in DeFi, Creator Economy, and Infrastructure. The collective perspective across DAOs is afaik pretty unique.

More on Wildfire if you are interested in the June introductory forum post here:

I’m happy to discuss live sometime as well if you’d like as it would be amazing to get your thoughts on meta governance and just DAO governance. I’m epowell101 on Discord as well.

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This is such a great point - and I see two perspectives - with infinite options in-between

  • Decentralized maxi role: put this up for vote and let voters decide. Downside of this is that you can inadvertently lop side the Council. I have seen this happen in a DAO and the result was some months later the non-represented workstreams were voted out of existence.

  • Inclusive maxi role: Each workstream has an equal representation on the council. Downside of this is less governance-engaged workstreams takes up space that could be utilized by more engaged strategic thinkers - the larger the council, the greater the issue.

The middle path might be:

  1. Encourage more steward participation from under represented workstreams
  2. Reserve limited percentage of seats for each workstream
  3. Encourage the right mindset: council members must think “what is best for the DAO” and not “what is best for my workstream”

The current version we are working includes a variation of #2, and specific wording around #3. For number 1, I have reached out to an existing workstream that is underrepresented asked to join one of their calls (after GR15) to talk about the copious benefits of becoming a steward (fame, fortune, celebrity, etc. etc. etc.)
does this approach resonate? Or are there other ideas we should consider?

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@epowell101 - this is an interesting prompt. I am doing a lot of thinking about the pros & cons of the delegate governance model and although it is different from metagovernance, there are parallels that can be drawn. If anyone needs it, here is a primer on metagovernance which I am a wee bit partial to.

Although I believe there are fundamental gaps in the way web3 approaches metagovernance, I can see how it does not have (or has less of) the agency problem delegation has. For clarity - I am referring to token-owned metagovernance, not just delegated metagovernance - which to me is just delegation to an org vs. an individual. Let’s connect on this, I have some ideas on how to leverage the public goods ecosystem for robust governance.

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Quick update on where this work stands:

  1. A new proposal draft has been completed covering three components: A) an update of the purpose of the steward council, B) proposed steward council renumerations and C) revised selection process.
  2. This proposal has been shared with CSDO and we have requested input
  3. We intend to review this proposal with the Stewards in the steward call on Monday Oct 03.

Thanks to @ceresstation @kyle and @krrisis for collaborating on the draft to this point, and we welcome input from CSDO and the stewards.
Finally, we are looking forward to getting this proposal on to the forum for broader input shortly.

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Thanks @shawn16400 and others for all the hard work on the draft. It’s great to see more structure in the council and stipends for contribution. I think it’s a positive step in the right direction.

I will remain a delegate for Gitcoin DAO but I’d like to remove myself as a potential nominee to be considered for the council as the new increased time commitments are past what I’m able to commit to (especially with the frequency of meetings and often time zones that are difficult for me) and I want to be supportive of those that are able to make this commitment.

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