Fund 7 - Old proposal

Challenge setting proposal for fund 8

Challenge Title

Cardano Contributors League

Challenge question

How can we get more people working full time within Cardano?

Why is it important?

Cardano needs more of the community working full time in the ecosystem so it can reach its potential

How does success look like?

Community members solving important problems in Cardano are funded so that they can work full time in the ecosystem

Key Metrics to measure

The key metrics to measure for contributors from the contributors league would include:

  • Number of contributions (Code commits, events organised, coordination support between teams)

  • Community support (Conversations with and contributions to new and existing projects and community members)

Challenge brief

The League of Extraordinary Contributors

Cardano Contributors League is a community voted for group of funded contributors in the Cardano ecosystem that help to support and drive the ecosystem forward. Contributor roles can include developers, coordinators, communicators, analysts, designers and more or a mixture of different expertise. The contributors can be seen as a glue that helps bring the ecosystem together and maximise collaboration and outcomes within the community.

Why is this challenge needed?

There is a benefit to consider other funding models rather than idea based funding. Strong ecosystems are built on good ideas that are well executed but the ecosystem also relies on impactful community contributors. The future of Catalyst funding could include funding community contributors as well as just ideas.

The analysis behind how this challenge brief was constructed can be found here and details the tradeoffs of funding types, the decision to use duration and salary caps and how the challenge total requested budget was decided

Contributors league candidate - What should be included in the proposal?

  • Personal information - Basic personal information such as the candidates name and optionally a profile photo

  • Professional background - Professional background with skills, education and any relevant information

  • Contributions - Contributions the candidate has made to the ecosystem so far or wider blockchain community

  • Budget - Budget breakdown of salary request and time frame of up to 12 months, 6 months time frame is preferred to minimise risk to community treasury. Candidates should list out existing funding received from Catalyst and consider reductions where necessary.

  • Areas of focus - Detail what parts of the Cardano ecosystem they can help with - Development? Coordination? Events? Catalyst? Scaling? Tools?

  • Approach to prioritisation and feedback - How will you take feedback from the community and prioritise where you are making contributions?

What is expected from successful candidates?

  • Support the ecosystem - Contributors should focus on returning the highest value to the ecosystem and look to solve the largest problems the community is facing at the time. Those problem areas could include support for open source SDKs, coordination, missing tooling, governance issues, improving user experience etc.

  • Support the community - Contributors should understand the ecosystem and be able to help the community where it's needed. That could be answering questions, pointing people to the right resources or bringing more awareness to different areas of the ecosystem that need support.

  • High collaboration - Contributors have the power to be the glue that brings the community together and identifies overlap and duplicated efforts. The community benefits by contributors spending time understanding different related projects and bringing those together where it is a benefit to them and the ecosystem.

  • High participation - To be highly effective contributors will need to understand what is happening across the ecosystem to the best of their ability. Contributors may sensibly focus on one or a few areas within the ecosystem where they ensure they are up to date and are aware of the problems, projects, teams and roadmap.

  • Flexible - Contributors will be most impactful if they are able to be flexible in a fast moving environment and move to where they can have a high impact.

What should contributors report?

  • Progress reports - Contributors should report weekly progress reports on what they are working on in the community, blockers and anything else relevant

  • KPI reports - Contributors would not need to report KPI reports like idea proposals do. Instead they would focus on increased regularity of progress reports that detail how they are contributing to the ecosystem.

  • Gather community feedback - The contributor should provide a way for the community to provide feedback to what they are working on to help guide changes of focus and priority. The contributor will be the decider of what they work on and can provide justifications for that which would be taken into account for any future funding rounds for being a contributor again.

What sort of candidates are most suitable?

  • Approachable - You understand the community will reach out to you regularly and will need to be friendly and supportive to community members.

  • Outcome focussed - You understand that the problems within any ecosystem are complex and take time to overcome but are able to communicate and collaborate on finding solutions.

  • Open minded - You have insights but are always open to new ideas on how to solve a problem. You look to include all perspectives when solving problems.

  • Pragmatic - You understand solving problems often doesn't start with the perfect solution. You understand the difference between short and long term thinking and how to prioritise what is most important and achievable.

What candidates may be less suitable?

  • Idea focussed - You have a great idea and want to work on it full time. This candidate is less suitable as contributors should not be tied to a single idea. Instead contributors are a collaborative force that helps pull ideas and teams together. This person can make a proposal for their idea if that's where they want to focus their time where the contributors league could help them instead!

  • Wants full autonomy and independence - Candidates will need to communicate and collaborate with many community members, ideas and projects regularly. If a candidate wants full autonomy and independence to solve problems then they are more suited to idea focussed proposals rather than joining the contributors league.

Community advisors - How candidates should be assessed

  • Feasibility - How likely is it that the candidate will be effective in working in the areas of focus they detailed? Do their professional background, skills, experiences and existing contributions support that they will be able to fulfil that role?

  • Impact - How impactful are the areas of focus that the candidate has listed? Is their chosen area of focus currently lacking contributors? Does that area of focus have hard to find expertise that makes it higher value to the ecosystem?

  • Auditability - What evidence is given on any of their existing contributions made to the community? Is the approach to prioritisation and feedback given fair and justified? Is there any evidence of their existing collaboration and participation in the community?

Challenge team - What duties will support success

  • Proposal support - Help candidates propose a fair budget and salary expectations for their application. Guide candidates to add more proof of existing contributions or professional background where necessary.

  • Progress report reviews - Check on execution of reported progress by candidates to ensure it meets the standards and expectations of the community. Flag and report candidates where necessary for wider community review.

Future ideas to consider with this challenge

  • Reputation building - The contributors league could become a vital part of the Cardano ecosystem where the community could issue credentials or vote on members of the workers league for helping in certain areas. Some examples could be for high impact help in areas such as development, coordination, design, planning.

  • Bonuses - Top contributors league members could be voted for in a governance process and be given a bonus reward for the impact of their contributions. This could make being a contributor very lucrative and align financial incentives well towards those that make large effort contributions that positively benefit the ecosystem.

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