Rolling Awards Period Proposal

For some time now, the pDao has expressed concerns regarding the efficiency of the GMC’s award period system. Currently, the GMC has only one month to discuss awards, reach a consensus, and deliver a final decision. However, this rigid schedule limits the opportunity for adjustments and modifications, leading to decisions that are often too final. Consequently, there seems to be an imbalance favoring retrospective awards over grants.

To address this issue, the community has been discussing potential solutions, and the most promising one, according to the GMC, is the implementation of a rolling awards system. This system would introduce an ongoing awards period, allowing for more flexibility and adaptability in the decision-making process. By adopting a rolling awards system, the GMC believes it can achieve enhanced efficiency and provide greater value to the recipients.

Below is the schedule proposed by the GMC:

Step 1 (Week 0)
On Sunday evening, the administrator makes a GMC thread for each grant. The administrator enters them into the Google Sheet.

Step 2 (Week 0-2)
Within the first two weeks, the GMC scores and forms their decision.

Step 3 (Week 2)
On the forum post regarding the grant, GMC provides comments regarding support, funding, and the ultimate decision of approving or rejecting the project.

Step 4 (End of Week 2)
The GMC administrator initiates contact with the awardee to share detailed notes regarding the approval and rationale behind it. A one-week discussion window is provided, encompassing potential negotiation opportunities.

Step 5 (End of Week 3)
GMC will make the decision public via the forum and Discord.

We believe this schedule will not cause excessive demands or create undue time constraints for committee members.

Along with the rolling awards period we are proposing the following improvements for an all-encompassing RPIP because they are interdependent:

  1. Retro Award Cap Removal [link]: With the current cap, it could potentially take years to pay back all retroactive awards, leading to dissatisfaction and discouragement among community members. The retro cap was intended to incentivize grants but the rolling awards system will have a much larger impact on that issue.
  2. GMC Administrator Role[link]: We are expanding the scope of the GMC Administrator role bounty to facilitate more of the GMC’s duties. The success of the rolling awards system is dependent on a facilitator that can handle the daily relaying of information.

We believe that the combined implementation of these three proposed adjustments (rolling awards, cap removal, gmc admin) will play a crucial role in optimizing the overall performance of the rolling awards system.


I am in absolute agreement with this proposal. I support it completely.

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High level: I like this plan a lot better than simply nuking the cap.

Concern: this is a lot of power wielded by a single person. Negotiations are fickle and subjective, eg.

My request would be for oversight by the GMC. This would mean that discussions should happen on, eg, a GMC discord server on a channel made for the purpose, which is visible by the applicant, admin, and GMC (even if the last group usually doesn’t talk). Similar effects can be achieved with Google docs or various other tools; the key thing I’m looking for is avoiding all-private where even blatant favoritism (people, genre) would go unnoticed.

Am I reading this right that we’re essentially doing (a) 28 day periods and (b) adding a discussion phase?

If it takes 2 weeks to gather votes initially, are we confident 1 week allows even moderate changes? It seems like there’s no time for discussion back and forth, so it’s more or less the admin listening all around and putting forth a deal for :+1: from both sides.

If discussion isn’t done in 7 days, that means a whole month’s delay, right?

Have we considered true rolling? Apply whenever, initial phase, refining phase, decision?

This would reduce idle time spent waiting for a cycle to begin, and would also give some flexibility (eg, fast track rocketarb for discounts if a discount cropped up).

We recognize that certain stages of the proposed timeline should offer room for flexibility to enhance the overall process.

In particular, the negotiation stage (Step 4) is designed to be adaptable. We anticipate that applications within this stage will extend beyond the initial award cycle, allowing for sufficient time to provide comprehensive feedback and maintain effective communication.

My recommendation would be to have separate votes on those 3 topics (or different permutations in one vote). I realize that they are somewhat interdependent (ie creating a more complex schedule necessitates more coordination), but you need some way to signal that people want a GMC administrator but no changes to the GMC schedule, for example. If you think they are so interconnected that they would fail without each other, then you can have a clause saying that they only get enacted once all 3 are passed.

The other recommendation is that if you are going to to attempt to change RPIP 18 (which is a change of RPIP 15), please err on the side of allowing more flexibility to the GMC with broader guidelines. This is to say, does the pDAO really care about the specific bureaucratic process by which the grants are chosen? Or do we just want the grants to flow honestly every few months, and if we see problems we can change the GMC composition. I worry that having very specific guidelines won’t prevent malfeasance (there’s no force of law or code here), but may require changes every few months as has been the case. And that may vote fatigue for more pressing issues. So addend the RPIP so it can encompass the old system and the new one, because both seem reasonable.


And just a few example of structural changes that may help but wouldn’t need RPIP changes.

subcommittee structure

Problems: Unpaid members of GMC are asked to review dozens of projects over an ~16 day timeframe. This is challenging at present, and may not be sustainable if increased complexity or number of projects. The short timeframe doesn’t allow for interplay between GMC and applicants to improve projects. Coordinating 9 community members across multiple time zones is a limiting factor. Discussing a large number of projects prevents deep discussion of any of them. The rolling admission proposal helps many of these problems, but not me significantly worsens the difficulty of coordination due to every 2 week meetings.

Solution: Split the GMC into 3 subcommittees of 3 members, each primarily responsible for recommending action on 1/3 of the proposals. Other committee members will then evaluate the applications, using both the recommendations/assessment of the subcommittee and any changes the applicant has made to inform their decision.


  1. Split the GMC into 3 subcommittees of 3 members each
  2. Each subcommittee is primarily responsible for 1/3 of proposals, assigned round robin as they come in.
  3. Each member will read their assigned proposals and discuss with the remainder of the subcommittee within the first 7 days of the decision period; this can be by voice or text.
  4. The subcommittee will either recommend (2/3 or 3/3 votes) or advise against (1/3 or 0/3 votes) each assigned grant, with the reasoning for the decision (and any dissent) listed. Additionally, any additional information/editing sought from the applicant would be requested.
    5). Applicants can submit any changes or addend runs based on feedback.
  5. After the subcommittees have released their recommendations and comments, any committee member can pick up a docket and vote. Once 5/9 votes are in favor or opposed to a grant, that docket is considered inactive, and if no votes change will act as the final decision.
  6. any committee member can change his/her mind up until awards are finalized, potentially moving a docket from inactive to active and necessitating review by other members.
  7. ongoing funding discussions can happen asynchronously (ie, whether there are enough funds, or whether particular projects should receive more or less than requested)


  1. Lower total work needed, as only 5/9 need to read some grants that are easy approvals or disapprovals.
  2. Exponentially less coordination across schedules due to only 3 members needing to speak synchronously, who could potentially be grouped based on time zone etc.
  3. More time to discuss each project as only 1/3 need to be discussed by each subcommittee.
  4. More feedback for individual projects- after their grant is recommended or disapproved by the subcommittee, applicants can submit updates to sway other committee members
  5. More time to obtain changes or additional information from projects
  6. Assurance that all GMC members play a sizable role, rather than possibly having a few thought leaders and many followers.
  7. No changes to the RPIP are needed.


  1. Increased coordination required (like a google doc) that sums votes
  2. Increased variance as different subcommittees may have different focuses or expectations; however, note the subcommittees decisions are just advisory and not binding for other members.
  3. potentially more challenges with balancing finances if we ever get to a point where we spend more than we are taking in.

Not sure if this is a positive or negative:

  1. it will become painfully obvious if one member is not pulling his/her weight.
early bird special

Grant proposal to award those who submit successful grants early in the cycle. A forum post will be opened one month before the official call for applications which can take pre-applications. Those applications will be ported over to the official ‘call for application’ post as soon as that latter post opens per RPIP 18, but committee members can read them beforehand. Up to 2% early bird bonus payment is made for approved applications only; 0% if submitted on final day, 2% if submitted first possible day, and linearly between these dates. The amount granted will be known after all other grants have been decided. This is a percentage of the award granted rather than flat fee because it’s important that larger grants give the GMC more time for reflection than smaller grants.

These are my personal takes:

Some issues I see with subcommittee structure:
From my observation thus far, the activity of committee members has been commendable. However, I do have a concern regarding the decision-making process in situations where two out of three members are unavailable for their scheduled shift. In such cases, it appears that the responsibility of making a decision would fall solely on one member. Additionally, if conflicts of interest arise between a member and an application, it would require constant rotations to ensure fair decision-making.

Given that the committee operates on a voluntary basis, it is inevitable that some members will be more involved than others. However, I believe it would be unwise to reduce the commitments of everyone (including those committing more) by two-thirds, while also making each application being decided by only one-third of the GMC representation. As an applicant, I would hope for a fair diverse allocation of representation rather than leaving it to chance of which subcommittee is randomly chosen.

On early bird special:
While I appreciate the notion of maintaining the current structure, I have reservations about how it would facilitate the necessary flexibility for revisions. The current process involves extensive coordination and time investment to ensure that every member participates in voting and discussions. Simply receiving applications earlier does not guarantee that they will be addressed and deliberated upon earlier within the GMC.

Keeping strict time windows for negotiations could potentially hinder the representation of the majority of the GMC’s input. It is crucial to maintain flexibility in order to accommodate varying perspectives and allow for thorough discussions that capture the collective wisdom of the committee. This way, we can ensure that the negotiation process truly reflects the diverse viewpoints of the GMC and avoids undue haste in decision-making.

I think @epineph was not advocating for these particular items as much as suggesting writing that charter broadly enough that the GMC could make this level of structural choice themselves.

Ie, we trust them to judge, we trust them to make criteria for judgement, should we also trust them to figure out the process deets?

I support this as well.

All reasonable counterpoints!

However, the subcommittee idea merely gives advisory power to 3 members for each grant; 5/9 still need to vote to approve every 3 months. My guess is that there are currently 2 or 3 very active members that steer voting behavior for the others (this would be normal social behavior), so I tend to think it won’t make things less democratic de facto. With subcommittees, it may indeed become rapidly clear who is not pulling their weight- this to me is a positive so that we could elect individuals who will be active participants.

To valdorff’s point, I personally think this subcommittee model would be a preferable structure, but i don’t generally expect my radical ideas to get accepted and I think the GMC should be able to decide for themselves. I just believe in throwing out ideas and seeing what sticks.

honestly, my concern

is that the ‘rolling rewards period proposal’ would significantly increase complexity necessitating significant resources of the GMC administrator (as weekly/biweekly meetings would occur), somewhat decrease democracy (presumably some the the 9 members would be unavailable to vote in any given week), and would not actually achieve the goals laid out (better quality grants submitted or more grants/bounties approved). I realize in this I am opposed by the majority of the GMC who have a better idea of what they need :joy:

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I value your radical ideas and suggestions. While they may not align with our current operational framework, we are in a transitional phase of change and rebuilding. Your ideas contribute to this process, providing us with alternative perspectives and possibilities if are first attempts go wrong. As we implement the next set of changes, there is always room for further adaptation and improvement, and having a bucket of ideas helps.

You raise a valid point on decreasing democracy. I am actively developing plans for improving this with collaboration software and new systems of documentation. The aim is to ensure that every committee member’s voice is heard and considered in the decision-making process.

As we develop our process it will require quite a bit of fine-tuning along the way. However, I firmly believe that taking a large leap towards a different schedule and system is the most efficient way to achieve our goal.

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