Season 6: Collective Reward Framework

Special thanks to @alisha.eth, @brichis, @ceresstation, @GFXlabs, @Gonna.eth, and @teresacd for feedback and suggestions as part of the Feedback Commission

Season 6: Collective Rewards Framework

What is this Framework For?

As several governance structures have been introduced in the Token House over the past few Seasons, and as Citizens’ House governance comes online, it’s important to have a framework to set rewards consistently across the Collective. To this end, the below non-binding, guidelines provide a suggested framework to think about Collective rewards, and are not meant to serve as a rigid or binding policy encapsulating all possible scenarios.

The primary use case will be in the Token House’s evaluation of prospective budgets, but these guidelines can also help ensure more consistency and predictability for voter rewards (delivered retroactively at the end of each Season, based on governance participation.) They are not necessarily meant to be used in Retroactive Public Goods Funding (Retro Funding) rounds.

How will this Framework Evolve?

This suggested framework is a step towards transitioning more allocation decision making to the community. In Season 7, we plan to introduce a Budget Board to make recommendations to the Collective about allocation parameters. The Budget Board may use these guidelines as a starting point from which they propose a rewards framework or policy to be ratified by governance. Our recommendation is that any future policy be kept as streamlined as possible. The more complexity and/ or the more variables involved, the more difficult forecasting and budgeting will be for the Collective in the future.

General Guidelines

  • It is important to remember that the Governance Fund is a temporary mechanism and that most* governance operations will need to transition to be supported by Retroactive Public Goods Funding (Retro Funding).
  • Distributing rewards retroactively solves many of the compensation and budgeting problems prevalent in other DAOs. However, until the Retro Funding mechanism is reliable enough to support the entire Collective, we recommend setting budgets with a target of 20% of rewards coming from Retro Funding, understanding this ratio should transition towards ~100% for most contributions in the long term. Accordingly, the percentage of rewards expected to be received via Retro Funding should be noted in all budget proposals.
  • Throughout Season 6, the Foundation will consider additional mechanisms to bridge the gap between Token House contributions and Retro Funding, which may include novel reward mechanisms similar to backstop grants.
  • All rewards are entirely in OP.
  • Foundation and Delegate Mission Request grants are locked for one year, unless supporting user incentives (full details here.)
  • Stipends for elected representatives are distributed periodically throughout the Season and are unlocked.
  • All retroactive rewards are unlocked.

*Mission critical contributions, such as core development and/or security, may always require some degree of prospective grants.

**The Code of Conduct Council is an exception to this policy given the nature of their work, which is best suited to a higher percentage of retroactive rewards so as not incentivize conflict or bureaucracy.

Guidelines by Contribution Type

  • There are several different types of contributions to the Collective
    • Ad hoc: These contributions are open to anyone!

      • These contributions may include research and analysis, hosting community calls, and/or Builder Ideas
      • These contributions are best suited to be rewarded via Retro Funding
    • Contribution Paths: These contributions are open to anyone who has completed all steps in the pre-defined path (not elected)

      • All the NERD programs and the Ambassadors are contribution paths

        • Contribution paths may be supported via a combination of bounties, via Foundation or Delegate Mission Requests, but are best suited to Retro Funding in the longer term. Contribution paths are led by “Maintainers,” which are similar to “Leads” on Councils, and may be supported initially by Foundation Mission Requests.
    • Representatives: Elected contributors that act as representatives. Please note that most contributors should not be elected, (see DAO Design Principles.)

      • Representatives currently serve on Council or Boards that are established via the Collective Representative Framework as part of higher level system design that suggests the Collective can only support 4-5 of these bodies and ~50 representatives.

      • Elected representatives currently receive stipends from the Governance Fund. Stipends should correspond to Impact Ratings.

    • Governance participants Highly engaged governance participants receive retro rewards.

      • You can reference this chart for the types of contributions that may be rewarded. Rewards should correspond to Impact Ratings.

      • This comes out of the Unallocated portion of the token supply right now, but will need to be supported by Retro Funding eventually.

    • Service Providers

      • The Collective intentionally does not support persistent working groups staffed with full time DAO contributors, instead supporting autonomous Service Providers via Mission Requests and/or Retro Funding.

      • OP Labs and other Core Devs (Sunnyside Labs, Agora, etc.) can be thought of as Service Providers, as can other Mission Applicants.

      • Service Providers may be supported by Foundation or Delegate Mission Requests initially but should eventually be supported entirely by Retro Funding.

      • The amount a Service Provider may be rewarded is currently based on their Trust Tier. More advanced frameworks for rewarding Service Providers may be proposed over time.

Impact Rating Framework

This rewards framework is based on the concept of Impact Ratings. Impact Ratings are conceptual, to be used as a non-binding guide in determining budgets or rewards for various contributions.

This framework does not imply rewards will or should be made for all contributions that fall under an Impact Rating. Conversely, contributions that fall outside these examples may still be rewarded. Governance participants should use this framework to reason about which rating a given contribution would fall under and/or whether a given contributor should receive above/below the amount suggested by the corresponding Impact Rating (ie. leadership positions on a Council.) Impact Ratings will not be officially assigned or tracked as they are merely a decision making tool for the community to better assess budget requests and understand voter rewards.

Why Impact Ratings?

It is a design principle of the Collective to focus on outputs (impact) rather than inputs (amount of work) and we believe this approach should be reflected in a Collective Reward Framework. This framework also allows for the flexibility required to be adaptive over time while preserving the integrity of OP as a governance token (1 OP = 1 OP.) Given the need to be adaptive and the Collective’s approach to iteration and learning, each Season, the amount of OP suggested for each Impact Rating will be adjusted, and ratified, as appropriate.

Below are the suggested Impact Ratings for Season 6. Suggested rewards are on a per contributor basis.

  • Impact 1 = Contributes to the accessibility of the Collective; no specialized skills or context needed

    • Engaging in behaviors that promote Collective Values, such as disclosing conflicts of interest, promoting long term decision making, or empowering community members to make better decisions.

      • Suggested Season 6 Rewards: 250 OP per Season
  • Impact 2 = Contributes to the accessibility of the Collective; some specialized skills and context needed

    • Completing actions or tasks that require some understanding and or specialised skill. I.e: Contribution paths (Ambassadors, supNERDs, Translators).

      • Suggested Season 6 Rewards: 500 OP per Season
  • Impact 3 = Contributes to development of the Collective; low level of specialized skills and moderate context needed

    • Participation in a significant governance experiment

      • Suggested Season 6 Rewards: 1,000 OP per Season
  • Impact 4 = Contributes to development of the Collective; moderately specialized skill, high context needed

    • Providing valuable feedback to the Foundation (i.e. Feedback Commission)

    • Publishing reports or analysis on governance process, programs, and/or policies

      • Suggested Season 6 Rewards: 1,500 OP per Season
  • Impact 5 = Contributes to development of the Collective, moderately specialized skills, high context needed

    • Active voting participation in governance, by top delegates and/or Citizens

      • Suggested Season 6 Rewards:
        • 2,000 OP per Retro Funding round
        • 2,000 OP per Reflection Period
        • 4,000 OP per Season
  • Impact 6 = Contributes to the operations of the Collective; moderately specialized skills, high context needed

    • Anticapture Commission

      • Suggested Season 6 Rewards: 4,000 OP per Season
  • Impact 7 = Manages operations of the Collective; moderately specialized skills, high context needed

    • govNERDs, contributions similar to the Code of Conduct Council***

      • Suggested Season 6 Rewards: 8,000 OP per Season
  • Impact 8 = Drives strategic outcomes for the Collective; highly specialized skills and context

    • Grants Council, Budget Board (future), Developer Advisory Board

      • Suggested Season 6 Rewards: 20,000 OP per Season
  • Impact 9 = Drives critical outcomes of the Collective; highly specialized skills and context needed

    • Security Council, Core Development

      • Suggested Season 6 Rewards: The Foundation will support mission critical work via private prospective grants for the time being

*** Code of Conduct Council is listed as an illustrative example only. The unique nature of the Code of Conduct Council requires a majority of retroactive rewards.

All of the contributor roles and associated rewards described here are intended for independent and engaged community members who volunteer to provide their knowledge and expertise to the Collective and receive an honorarium in the form of OP. These volunteers are not employees of the Collective, the Foundation, or any of its affiliates for any purposes.


As part of the Path to Open Metagovernance, we’ll be experimenting with polls this Reflection Period.

Are there any aspects of the Collective Rewards Framework that you do NOT understand?

Please provide additional feedback in the comments if you select any answers below

  • What this framework is meant to be used for
  • How different contributions are rewarded
  • How impact ratings work
  • How this framework is “enforced”
0 voters

It seems like the DAO Design Principles link is broken.

Should be fixed now!


I’m sorry, my criticism may not be objective, but it’s certainly candid. How can we avoid the impact mentioned here affecting the Optimism Collective, rather than just the badge holders? I see that govNERDs seems to have a significant impact, while community management doesn’t appear to have much influence.
When discussing Contribution Paths, you can’t simply talk about the impact determining everything. Consider influence from another angle: can you do without it?
Yes, I firmly believe that basing Contribution Paths on workload is more aligned with the real world.