Voltaire is the Cardano Era of Blockchain Governance, and it had its first milestone in September 2020 with the launch of Project Catalyst Fund1, an ongoing experiment, which aims at decentralized innovation and collaboration, within a blockchain ecosystem.
Project Catalyst seeks to generate the participation of the community, which through voting, can determine the evolution priorities in Cardano.
Winning proposals receive funding from the Cardano Blockchain Treasury, submitted by developers tackling the challenges.
Project Catalyst aims to democratize decision making by allowing the Cardano community to vote on the challenges they want to see solved and the proposals that solve them.
With each funding round comes challenges on a variety of Cardano-related projects, for which proposals are submitted and voted on by the community for funding.
The proposals go through an evaluation process, in which a group of community advisors will check their feasibility, auditability and impact. Once this process is finished, the proposals are voted on by the community, and the allocated funds will be distributed in ADA to the winning projects.
Proposals compete within their corresponding challenge, with a cap on the amount of funds allocated for that challenge.
You can read more about Project Catalyst in my article (1).
IOG’s Project Catalyst team has conducted nine funding rounds over nearly three years, distributing funds to more than 1,100 projects, with a total of 1.74 million votes cast.
Following an 8-month project review, Fund10 was launched on June 21 with a total budget of ₳50 million.
Proposal submission opened on June 22, 2023, and the deadline for proposal submission was July 13 at 11:00 UTC, ending with some 1,577 ideas in various stages of preparation.
This FUND includes some new features, with two significant structural changes being:
- Milestone-Based Funding for all projects, with the Statement Of Milestones (SOM) module for all projects funded through challenges, and
- The Catalyst Continuous TestNET, an open source environment that can be implemented by the community, to test new iterations of Project Catalyst, further improving stability and reducing recovery times between funds.
The foundership Milestone-Based Funding Guidelines proposes that developers submit their proposals with a roadmap to meet, highlighting each key milestone, outcome, acceptance criteria, costs, and evidence of achievement for each stage. In this context, a milestone, an important event or action, can be measured at a set time as the progress of the proposal.
The introduction of multiple TestNETs makes it possible to test proposed functions in a sandbox environment, such as a lab. This further enhances the user experience of the funds.
The functionality only goes to production after the community has had a reasonable amount of time to review and test them.
A pre-production environment allows for extensive public testing of all backgrounds.
In addition to the functions detailed above, the following features are released:
- Updates from projectcatalyst.io, including an area for documentation.
- Evolution of the community review stage, before voting begins, introducing new tiers and incentives for community reviewers.
- New scripts to mark community reviews for moderation
- Significant improvements to the voting app registration process.
You can read the Fund Rules.
This Fund distributes ₳50 million distributed in 13 challenges:
- Catalyst Fund Operations (₳2.14M): Catalyst and the community requires stability and certainty that innovation funding is available. This category will accept proposals for the ongoing operations and maintenance of Catalyst fund administration.
- Catalyst Systems improvements (₳3.57M): What research and development is required to advance the state of the art of Catalyst and allow Catalyst to serve the community’s needs better?
- Atala PRISM: Launch Ecosystem (₳3.16M): Can we bring together stakeholders to accelerate adoption and product-market-fit?
- Building on NMKR (₳395K): How can we make the Cardano NFT ecosystem more accessible by creating tools that implement the NMKR Dev API?
- Catalyst Open (₳1.4M): How do we create a space for new ideas and projects that do not fit elsewhere?
- DAOs <3 Cardano (₳3.16M): How can we make Cardano the go-to choice for building DAOs? What tools can we provide to enable effective DAO’s Creation & Operation
- Developer Ecosystem – The Evolution (₳6.32M): How do we equip and support developers with tools and working infrastructure? How do we make Cardano their first choice when it comes to building dApps, innovating and collaborating?
- Development & Infrastructure (₳8.69M): What research, tools or software can improve the developer ecosystem or infrastructure to make it easier to build and scale on the Cardano blockchain?
- dRep improvement and onboarding (₳395K): How do you achieve “(1) diverse and many dRep participation + (2) easy and proper voter delegation?”
- OSDE: Open Source Dev Ecosystem (₳3.16M): Can we build a community-owned Open-Source Ecosystem that’s commercially viable to drive growth, increase opportunities, and increase project visibility for the whole Cardano Community?
- Products & Integrations (₳9.08M): What products and integrations can be developed or improved that will offer more use cases to the Cardano ecosystem that are high impact and drive more adoption?
- SPO Tools & Community Projects (₳4.74M): How can we support effective and impactful projects and initiatives to build and support the SPO Ecosystem and Community?
- Startups & Onboarding for Students (₳395K): How can we support student blockchain startups through Catalyst? And how can I increase the number of student Catalyst proposers and blockchain engineers?
You can see the Operating parameters that make up the Catalyst voting protocol, established to allow the community to decide which proposal will receive funding.
Voting is voluntary and everyone must re-register for Fund10, whether or not they voted in previous rounds, in order to apply for voter rewards, with distribution expected in mid-October.
The on-chain snapshot for voter registration is expected to take place on August 18.
Consult the Launch Guide for more information.
You also can visit Catalyst Voter Tool, an excellent tool from the Lido Nation platform.
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