Milestone Assessment

The Council has added guidance on what it is looking for in articulating milestones for assessing the success of a project. The guidance can be used by Cycle 11 applicants to provide more specificity on benchmarks and critical milestones. The guidance will also be provided to Cycle 10 final review proposers in order to develop a suitable set of milestones for the Council and community to monitor for grant awards. The Milestone Assessment guidance is available on the Council’s landing page, here, and replicated below for ease of access.

Council Milestone Assessment Procedures

Each grant proposer will be required to submit a set of milestones by which the community can judge the progress of the proposer’s project. Milestones enable the proposer and the community to achieve consensus on discrete indicators of good-faith effort to achieve the aims set forth in a proposal.

Each project may have benchmark milestones and a small number of critical milestones.

Benchmark Milestones

Benchmark milestones mark important points on the proposer’s roadmap for accomplishing their aims.

Benchmark milestones are meant to enable the proposer to display success to the Optimism community and for the Optimism community to monitor grantees’ progress.

Completion of benchmark milestones is not required for full award of a grant; rather, the completion or non-completion of benchmark milestones will inform the community on a proposer’s commitment to the Optimism community and may factor into future grant decisions.

The quality of benchmark milestones will factor into the Council’s assessment of the quality of a grant proposal.

An example of a benchmark milestone is: “Our project will reach 100 users by X date.”

Critical Milestones

Critical milestones demonstrate good faith effort to accomplish the aims set forth in a proposal.

Critical milestones are meant to provide the Optimism community with satisfaction that the proposer has taken actions consistent with those outlined in a successful proposal.

Non-completion of critical milestones will be grounds for the Council to recommend that Token House revoke any remaining grant tokens.

On-chain data or other publicly verifiable information is favored for the determination of critical milestones.

An example of a critical milestone is: “We will deploy X smart contract on Y date.”

Builders: benchmark milestones should be designated for monitoring over the course of one year. Proposers need not articulate critical milestones that require a full year to accomplish; however, the quality of benchmark milestones that enable the community to track project progress may be taken into consideration by the Sub-Committee when scoring a grant application.

Growth Experiments: benchmark milestones should be designated for monitoring over a timeframe articulated by the proposer in the grant application, which should encompass the duration of the distribution of the grant and beyond. Critical milestones should be designated within a 3-6 month period after the date of grant distribution.

Milestone Reporting

During the Final Review of a grant cycle, the Council will determine a set of benchmark milestones and critical milestones with each grantee eligible to receive a grant (based on the final ranking of grant applications). The Council will publish a list of approved milestones to accompany the Grant Review Roundup in the following format:

Proposers will be responsible for reporting milestone completion. In order to report, the proposer should post a comment to the original proposal on the Governance Forum, stating the following three factors:

If the milestone is verifiable on chain, there should be transaction-level or wallet-level accounting included as the source of truth.

A Milestone Completion email with a link to the comment must be sent to after it has been posted with the subject line “[Project Name] Milestone Reporting”.

Proposers should complete benchmark milestone reporting whether or not the initial deadline for the milestone has passed. Proposers should complete critical milestone reporting prior to the deadline, which shall be at least [14] days prior to the scheduled release of any remaining grant tokens.


The Grants Council will maintain a public list of milestones and their status (TBD, completed, failed). When a grantee submits a Milestone Completion email, the submission will be treated as an optimistic proposal to the relevant Sub-Committee for approval. The proposal will be deemed passed after the sooner of (a) the passage of ten calendar days, so long as fewer than a majority of the Sub-Committee members object to marking the milestone as complete, or (b) the affirmative vote of a simple majority of the Sub-Committee.

If the Sub-Committee denies completion of a benchmark or critical milestone, it may ask the proposer to resubmit with further substantiating evidence of completion or mark the milestone as failed, depending on the circumstances of the milestone.

If the deadline for a critical milestone completion has passed, the Sub-Committee’s vote to deny completion of the milestone will automatically refer the failure to Token House for a vote on whether to revoke any pending grant rewards.

In addition to non-completion of critical milestones, either Sub-Committee may, by simple majority vote, refer a project to Token House for revocation based on a proposer’s egregious acts (including acts in violation of law or regulation or gross violation of community principles embodied in the delegate code of conduct) or egregious failures to perform stated actions outlined in the grant proposal.

Milestone Monitoring

The Grants Council will maintain a record of all milestones and their completion status. This will be made available to the community on a public Google Sheet or comparable tracking medium that will be designated in the comments to this post.

Each Sub-Committee will review any benchmark submissions for grants on a weekly basis. The status of submissions updates will be updated promptly after Sub-Committee consideration. Each Sub-Committee will also review the list of pending milestones to assess whether proposers have any critical milestone deadlines approaching in the near term.

At the end of each Cycle, the Council will report on milestone achievement for prior grant recipients.