Goals & Objectives

Looking at the usage of goals and objectives in relation to funding categorisation

Goals and objectives are an important part of the funding process to help the community share what they think needs to be achieved for the ecosystem to thrive.

The current funding process uses challenge settings to do funding categorisation. Challenges invites all forms of funding categorisation which mean that goals and objectives are often included in the selected challenges. Problems with this are covered in this comparison of goals vs objectives and in the objective setting with challenge setting analysis.


Goals focus on more broad and longer term outcomes that the community is looking to achieve. Goals are valuable for setting a general direction that the community can get behind. Goals do not determine exactly what must be achieved and how it will be measured. Goals set by the community help to showcase the longer term ambitions of the ecosystem.

  • Easy to understand - Goals don’t need to be overly specific which helps in making them simple and easy to understand.

  • Scalable - Having a smaller number of broader goals that group together actionable objectives makes it easier for the community to understand different focus areas within the community that people care about.

  • Not actionable or measurable - Goals don’t specify how they should be achieved nor how to measure them.

Why goals aren’t suitable as funding categorisation

Goals are more effective than objectives for funding categorisation because they are broad in focus. This increases flexibility in the proposal types that can be submitted. However at one given moment the community will only have a certain amount of goals. If funding categorisation was achieved using goals then it would mean excluding many potential ideas and innovation. This has the problem of reducing competition, removing options for voters and ignoring the fact that more impactful innovation could come outside of the goals that have been set. This is also discussed in comparing inclusive vs exclusive categorisation.

Goal examples from previous funding categorisations

The following are examples of longer term goals of the community that could instead be created as goals instead of funding categorisations to avoid issues of having specific and competitive categorisation:


Objectives are more focussed and actionable targets that have measurable steps to achieve a specific outcome. Objectives should be more clear and precise on what needs to be executed and for more on the short to mid term. One popular model for objective setting is the use of creating S.M.A.R.T objectives.

  • Actionable and measurable - Objectives are helpful for proposers to more clearly define and showcase how they intend to help the community achieve certain goals.

  • Effective but time consuming - Creating quality objectives is time consuming and requires more effort from the community and proposers to understand whether a given proposal can effectively contribute to certain objectives.

Why objectives aren’t suitable as funding categorisation

Objectives are more specific and focussed which makes them a poor funding categorisation approach. Objectives are far more short term and faster moving. If funding categorisation was done using objectives it risks the objective being achieved during the usage of the categorisation. Another issue is there could be hundreds or thousands of objectives that exist at a given moment. Objectives would drastically increase the complexity if used as a categorisation approach and also would exclude ideas that exist outside of those objectives.

Objective examples from previous funding categorisations

More specific objectives are not well suited as funding categorisations as it makes the funding less flexible to different situations and less competitive. The following categorisations are examples that more closely resemble shorter term objectives:

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