As the Gitcoin Grants Program evolves to be more community owned and operated, we’d like to share our thinking on next steps and request your feedback.
We will be testing a new approach for community engagement for the Gitcoin Program launch to help us determine what rounds Gitcoin manages internally and what externally operated rounds are featured during the next quarterly Grants Program which will be taking place in the upcoming Season mid April.
We will be requesting feedback to select 4-6 Core grants rounds to be part of the Grant Program that Gitcoin operates for our upcoming Beta round in April on our new Grants Stack.
In the next two weeks our PGF Operations team will work with past round operators and ecosystem partners to create a short list of potential rounds for consideration to be “featured” in the Gitcoin Program. Rounds must meet a minimum standard of viability and be value aligned with the Gitcoin Community to be featured.
Update: this is the form being used to gather information from potential core rounds.
- There will be 4-6 slots open for Core Rounds run directly by the Gitcoin team (all the way from fundraising to operating and marketing). We will suggest a list of rounds to include but it will be up to your vote.
This is a starting list of rounds that we think could be successful as Core Rounds given their existing matching funds, teams, and demonstrated levels of community support:
- Open Source Software Round**
- ETH Core Infrastructure**
- Climate Solutions**
- Diversity Equity and Inclusion (DEI)**
- Web3 Community
- Decentralized Science
- Psychedelics Research
- Crypto Advocacy
- Open Gaming
**Rounds that already have funding in place
We will present options to the community to choose from for these 4-6 funding rounds on the week of Feb 21st. This vote will take place on Snapshot.
UPDATE: This is the link to the snapshot vote that is open until March 1st at 17:30 UTC - Snapshot
We are exploring a form of Quadratic Voting or a GTC holder vote that is open to anyone that meets the minimum trust score with Gitcoin Passport. We may still use a traditional GTC token holder vote.
The Featured Rounds will consist of a mix of returning ecosystems and cause round partners that meet a minimum viable round criteria.
The primary difference between these rounds and the Core Rounds is that the Featured Rounds will not be run by Gitcoin directly but instead will be run by their respective community members and supporters who will function as Round Operators. Gitcoin may however offer services to the Featured Rounds that qualify based on the minimum viable round criteria as assessed by the PGF team and ultimately ratified by the Gitcoin Stewards. The Stewards will have the discretion to decide which rounds are featured. All rounds will be marketed and share a home page together
- For the upcoming Gitcoin Beta round (likely mid April) Featured Rounds will only be those that have previously been part of past grants rounds and/or new ecosystem eligible partners that have hosted a simulated round on the Grants Stack tools.
A (kinda) quick glossary of terms:
A Grants “Round” - This term is used to describe our quarterly grants program overall and also can be used to describe any of the individual matching fund pools like for example the Open Source Software Round. To reduce confusion these sub rounds can also be called a theme or a pool.
A “theme” or “pool” - Each pool of funding in a sub round is framed around a theme. For example the climate solutions matching fund pool is part of the upcoming season 17 Beta round.
Season - every quarter is considered a season for the sake of our budgeting and coordination. Within one season there may be a number of grants rounds run on Gitcoin’s grants stack by other organizations and one Grants Program Festival which is run by the Gitcoin DAO.
The Gitcoin Grants Program - Our quarterly Grants Program is a mixture of Core and Featured Rounds that the DAO facilitates. This is what we used to call our “GR(XX)’s” (ie. Grants Round 15/GR15)
The Grants Stack - This is the bundle of software tools used to host a grants round that include Explorer (where people can see all grantees in the round and donate), Builder (where grantees can create their grant proposals), Round Manager (where operators set up and manager the round behind the scenes) and Passport (the tool used to verify donors identities).
Cause Rounds - These are the rounds we run ourselves or work with partners to support cause oriented grants rounds. These rounds may be part of either our Core or Featured Rounds.
New Cause Rounds of all types can be proposed and then voted on for inclusion in our Core Rounds. If they are chosen they can become new Core Rounds which are helped to get off their feet by the Gitcoin team and then as the teams involved in running these rounds grow they may become Featured Rounds not requiring as much support from the Gitcoin team or even run their own fully independent grants rounds on their own schedule using the Grants Stack
Ecosystem Rounds - This was the name given to rounds run in support of ecosystem partners (for example the Polygon Round or the ENS Round), these could become Featured Rounds in or quarterly Grants Program and many may also run independent funding rounds on their own schedule.
Core Rounds - The Core Rounds are those deemed by the community to be in line with the core mission and values of Gitcoin and will receive the most direct support from the Gitcoin team and the Gitcoin community has the ability to play a role in determining eligibility and other key decisions about the running of the rounds.
Featured Rounds - Featured Rounds are those that are run by partners with less direct input from the Gitcoin community in regards to eligibility or other decisions about the round management but will get to participate in the network effects of the round. These rounds will be included in the promotion of the Program for the season and benefit from additional visibility during the round and as a result will encompass a fee to participate (we will keep this fee low this round at 3-5% given the Grants Stack is still in Beta).
The fee may be variable in the future, there will be more conversation about this in the community as the program evolves.
For the Beta Round ideally we’ll have 5-10 Featured Rounds this season.
The process of PGF team shortlisting potential grants rounds and the initial list of eligible Featured Rounds will conclude Feb 17th.
Voting for Core Rounds for the Beta Round will take place the following week starting Feb 21 and running until midnight UTC on Feb 25th.
Core Rounds and Featured Rounds will be announced on the forum immediately after the voting and shared in a post the week of Feb 27th.
We will also alert all rounds not selected that we make them aware of opportunities to get involved and when they will be able to run their own stand alone rounds or potentially apply for the next season.
Any proposed grants round that was selected in the vote but does not achieve the minimum fundraising goals or misses key deadlines for executing the round (eligibility criteria finalized, minimum number of grantees onboarded etc.) may be removed from the round before the Grants Program begins.
All proposed rounds involved as Core or Featured Rounds will get a tool kit including the run book, design assets and technical and operational advisory support from the Gitcoin PGF and Support team. We will provide fundraising and operational support for Core Rounds.
Thank you for your interest in Gitcoin Grants rounds! Your participation and feedback means the world to us. We are excited to hear your ideas about how our processes could improve to make even more public goods a reality. Have a lovely day.
Massive thank you to Janine, Connor, Kieran, Maxwell, Scott, Coleen and Jon for all the work on pulling together this post. Coordination in action!
Public goods are good.