Goals & Objectives With Funding Categories
Exploring how goals and objective setting is integrated into the usage of funding categories
Funding categories offer a way to drastically simplify the funding categorisation of Catalyst by using a smaller number of broad, recurring and inclusive categorisations. Funding categories are a category based approach to bring together proposals based upon being in a similar focus area. Some example focus areas are Governance & Identity or Community & Outreach or there are categorisations that aim to fulfil a certain function like Nurturing Ideas & Teams.
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Goal or objective setting is not included within funding categories. Funding categories only focus on effective funding categorisation. Usage of the funding categorisation with funding categories remains simple, efficient, flexible and scalable.
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Goal and objective setting is an important part of the funding process where the community wants to be able to indicate what they believe is the highest priority area to focus on at a given moment. Funding categories would achieve this by using an independent goal & objective setting process that can be integrated and considered separately from funding categorisation.
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Using an independent goal & objective setting process means getting all the benefits of being scalable, simple and less effort for the community. Funding categorisation can remain simple, efficient and scalable and goal and objective setting can be dynamic and responsive to changes. Goals and objectives can be integrated into the voting experience within Catalyst. Auditability of outcomes for meeting objectives also does not concern funding categorisation and would be resolved in a separate auditing process.
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Funding categories promote recurring, inclusive and broad categorisation
  • Broad - Focus area and function focussed categorisation is well suited to offering broad categorisation that invites multiple types of proposals. Categorisation could also be made more specific on what focus areas are included however this comes at an increase cost of complexity around determining budget weighting for each categorisation. Specific categorisation is less flexible to dynamic changes.
  • Inclusive - Categories that group proposals by a focus area can easily be inclusive to all forms of idea and innovation. Funding categories have been designed to be suitable for being an inclusive form of funding categorisation.
  • Recurring - Categories based on focus areas or that fulfil a certain function can be defined upfront and used in each funding round. This makes them a suitable choice for recurring categorisation. The categories could still change but would instead only need updating when necessary.
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Advantages
  • Supports dynamically changing goals & objectives - Categories are flexible to dynamically changing goals and objectives as the categorisation doesn’t specify what must proposals must focus on. This allows the community to update or add new objectives dynamically at anytime as they emerge. This improves the speed in which proposals of higher priority can be identified and supported in the funding process.
  • Simple - Usage of recurring categories means no justification is needed every funding round to decide which categorisations to include. This approach removes the complexity of voters needing to decide which categorisations to include and exclude in each funding round. Instead voters would use an independent goal & objective setting process separate from the funding categorisation process. This makes it far less complex as it would remove the decisions around mixing budget weighting with objective and goal setting categorisations and also remove the difficulty of deciding which categorisations to include and exclude.
  • Lower community and governance effort - Instead of having effort around justifying categorisations, assessing and voting on them every funding round the community would only need to put effort into the budget weightings that go into each category. As an example if the community had a number of objectives to do with improving the developer ecosystem and a number of proposals previously submitted in that categorisation the community would be able to take that information and vote on increasing the budget weighting of the ‘Development & Infrastructure’ category. Less effort is required by the community in justifying and thoughts on the ramifications of including and excluding certain categorisations that focus on objectives that can often change quickly.
  • Increases opportunity for more engagement - By using an independent goal & objective setting process the community can quickly submit and vote on different goals and objectives in isolation of the funding process. Their action won’t cause any negative implications toward the funding categorisation process. Instead they are able to focus on sharing their opinion on what they believe is the highest priority goals and objectives. Allowing the community to do this at their own convenience with low friction helps to maximises the opportunity and likelihood for the community to be engaged with this goal and objective setting process for those that are interested.
  • Less easy to break - Having categories that allow for a range of proposal types with different competing objectives makes it less risky and easy to break. There are situations where no proposals for a given objective or goal could turn up or alternatively there could a number of proposals but they are of poor quality. Broader funding categories not focussed on specific goals or objectives help to reduce the risk of these situations by allowing more proposals with different focuses. This gives the voter more choice to select the most promising options.
  • Increases competition between goals & objectives - Removing goals and objectives outside of funding categorisation makes it easy for categories to be inclusive of all forms of idea and innovation. This also means the voters will receive the maximum amount of choice to vote on. Broader categorisations help increase healthy competition between a number of different proposals that each can have different goal or objective focuses.
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Issues
  • Low priority proposals - People can suggest proposals that are not useful or impactful. This is not a massive issue as the voter still gets to decide which proposals are impactful or not when voting. To reduce any burden on the voter this issue can be solved by using ranking algorithms to highlight the most prioritised proposals based on the goals and objectives set by the community.
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Funding categories & goal setting visualisation
  • Dynamically changing goals or objectives - By separating out the goal and objective setting process from funding categorisation it becomes easier to use broad categorisation that encourages a larger amount of proposals with different goals or objectives. If the communities goals or objectives suddenly change this separation of concerns allows the funding process to become dynamic to these changing priorities. This is more easily achieved because the funding categorisation is broad and inclusive.
  • Multiple goals or objectives - As per the example above a single proposal can help to achieve multiple goals which makes it clear on the intentions of the proposal outcomes.
  • Proposer simplicity - Funding categories make proposal submission simple as proposals predictably fit into one of the categories as they collectively are inclusive to all ideas and innovation. Proposers also have the option to attach goals or objectives to their proposals that come from the independent goal and objective setting process.
  • Goal and objective focussed proposals across many categories - Separating goals and objectives from categorisation means proposals can be submitted across any of the funding categories that try to tackle the goals and objective with a different approach.
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