# GIP-15: Governauts Rewards Systems Research Initiative

GIP-15: Governauts Rewards Systems Research Initiative

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GIP: 15
title: Governauts Rewards Systems Research Initiative
author: Angela Kreitenweis (angela@tokenengineering.net) (@akrtws (TE Academy)#4246)
status: Phase 2
type: Funding
created: 2021-9-26

Simple Summary

The Reward Systems Token Engineering Initiative will run an #OpenScience program on the topic of DAO Rewards Systems. We’ll offer education and collaborative research for Token Engineers specializing in Governance, the aim is to come up with Zodiac DAO Improvement proposals.


In November 2021, we’ll kick-off a community research initiative on Rewards Systems and bring together 20-30 researchers from various backgrounds to work on Rewards Systems for DAOs. The work will be based on real DAO cases. We’ll offer an extensive educational program and facilitate the research process to create maximum output.
This is an excellent opportunity for Gnosis Zodiac to create attention, and work collectively on Zodiac DAO Improvement Proposals.


Rewards Systems are a vital element for DAOs to compensate builders for contributions and grant decision-making power and co-ownership to those who are so critical for a DAO’s value. Ecosystem Development via proposals and grants has become a popular method to distribute funds, and establish a shared perspective on value-add. All Rewards Systems need reliable value assignment, to ultimately lead to a healthy reward distribution.

The Governauts Rewards System Research initiative will explore:

  • How to best track contributions and account for the richness of value adds that come in many forms: code, communication, care, creativity
  • how to assign value, how to define value and associated roles, and permissions
  • what do stakeholders expect from rewards, and does the system in place meet these requirements
  • what are metrics to measure the reward system healthiness - in its respective lifecycle


We’ll provide education:

  • case introductions:
  • DAO cases with a Rewards System in production (TE Commons, Ocean DAO, NearDAO etc.)
  • partner talks, incl. Zodiac
  • Token Engineering fundamentals
  • DAO case studies and insights from Gitcoin, CommonsStack, BlockScience, TE Commons, and more
  • multidisciplinary insights from game design, behavioral economics, currency design, and monetary theory

and mentoring:

  • define an own research question in the scope of Rewards Systems
  • use methods from the Token Engineering toolkit
  • form multidisciplinary teams
  • produce actual outcome

This program is open to anyone, and free.
We’ll have an application process to ensure that participants

  • have the right background, e.g., Political Science, Behavioral Economics, Mechanism Design or Data Analytics
  • commit the next three months to work on Rewards System Research questions
  • attend an education program, learn and work on a self-defined research question


This program is organized by TE Academy. The mission of TE Academy is to develop the Token Engineering discipline and grow the number of skilled Token Engineers in crypto. TE Academy has run research initiatives like this several times already:

Incubating Governauts is an initiative to establish a dedicated branch in Token Engineering focused on decentralization and governance.
We organize workshops and discussions, provide a platform for collaboration and bring research programs to life with TE Academy.


We’ll deliver in three steps:

  • Zodiac workshop:
    with researchers, partners and DAO stakeholders as a roundtable to create awareness and set the scope for Zodiac DAO Improvement Proposals
  • Research documentation:
    community researchers work on Rewards Systems and
    • document their results in public HackMDs/Github repos and
    • discuss progress in weekly sessions (all sessions are recorded and shared publicly!)
    • share their results in a final presentations event (public)
  • Handover to Zodiac bounty/grant program
    to further develop most interesting results in DAO Improvement proposals


  1. We’ve opened up applications for community researchers, more details about the program:
  2. Our proposals to get our case partners on board have been confirmed:
    Ocean DAO: https://oceanpearl.io/projects/c2b3b1dAaD-governauts-rewards-systems-research
    NearDAO: https://www.sputnik.fund/#/dao/communitysquad.sputnikdao.near/proposals/158

Looking forward to adding Gnosis Zodiac to our list of partners!
Thanks for supporting this initiative.


Hi everyone,

here’s an update on our project! Last week we’ve onboarded the community researchers to our research initiative.

Again, we have an amazing mix of backgrounds, skills and world views. I highly recommend to watch one of our session recordings, like this one - or just drop by and listen in, here’s our session calendar:


We meet twice a week, objective in this first phase of the program is analyzing data and metrics to measure network health.

See you there!

Additionally, I’d like to invite all of you to our full-day gathering

on Friday, Dec 10th

Expect talks, discussions and workshops about:

  • Defining Success and measuring value add in DAOs
  • The Challenge of Rewards Systems
  • Community Evolution
  • Intrisic/Extrinsic Motivation
  • Information overload and steering activities
  • Ownership Rewards, power distribution and equal opportunitites
  • DAOs and UBI
    …plus case presentations and tools!

Confirmed speakers:
@Owocki / GitcoinDAO
@Liviade / TECommons
@pet3rpan / MetaCartel
@keikreutler / Zodiac
@duartedao / TheDAOist
@fifthworldzach / Coordinape

Please register here: https://forms.gle/GgrVAHVtCDGjjQbb7

Dear Gnosis DAO,
here’s another update on this initiative’s progress!

Our program finished phase 1 with two major events in December:

a) We’ve hosted a full day of talks and discussions about DAO Rewards Systems open to the public! The recordings are available here, if you are interested in all things rewards, this is a really unique collection to binge watch over the holidays :tv: :star2:

b) And there’s more: Our community researchers have explored various rewards systems, and came up with first data analytics and metrics for system healthiness. Check the PRESENTATIONS HERE!

And make sure to join our Discord in case you have comments or questions.

See you next year at Token Engineering!


We’ll host a hands-on workshop with Gnosis Guild on
January 31st with all participants in the program. Looking foward to it!

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Our research teams are on the home stretch for Governauts Rewards Systems!

Make sure to mark your calendar for Final Presentations
on Thursday, February 24, 4pm UTC

You are warmly invited to join us, see you there!