Team 2: Accelerating Arbitrum Governance

Arbitrum GovHack Track

DAO Operational Excellence

Challenge Statement

Create a streamlined Arbitrum governance proposal process, improve the quality of new proposals, and increase proposal legibility for voters.


Frisson - Lead (TG: @zeroxfrisson)
Hung Vu

Video Intro

Link to Loom

Accelerating Arbitrum Governance

Constitutional / Non-Constitutional



This proposal has two parts:

  1. Propose immediate operational improvements in the proposal process.
  2. Outline a path to smartly invest in decentralized infrastructure for growth.

For immediate benefit, this proposal creates a streamlined Arbitrum governance proposal process, improves the quality of new proposals, and increases proposal legibility for voters. We plan to achieve these outcomes by modifying the existing Arbitrum DAO governance process via constitutional amendment and commissioning a new, integrated governance application to support it.

This proposal also aims to conduct a thorough product research process to define the ideal state for Arbitrum governance going forward, setting Arbitrum DAO up to scale governance to three billion users.

Voter Guide

Reasons to vote “For”

  • Saves approximately 400 delegates hours per month
  • Streamlines the governance process for community members
  • Reduces the number of tools needed to participate in governance
  • Allows voter to quickly build context and more effectively evaluate complex proposals
  • Increases voter participation by only requiring delegates to vote once instead of twice
  • Aligns the DAO around future governance tooling needs through a product research process

Reasons to vote “Against”

  • The financial cost of the proposal isn’t worth the benefit to the DAO
  • May result in thorough reviewers being less diligent in their reviews
  • Will result in changes in the tooling stack/voting process for the DAO, including less usage of Snapshot
  • Part 2 is ambitious - building an “ideal state” for Arbitrum is a bold move

Expected Impact

The Arbitrum DAO has passed the 10 month mark, and in that time multiple pain points and zones of friction within the governance proposal process have been discovered. Proposal context is spread out across different locations (Discourse, Snapshot, Tally); the current status of a proposal is not immediately apparent; the multi-stage process for voting on a proposal is tedious and time consuming; and it is difficult to acquire all of the context necessary to understand what the ultimate outcome of a proposal will be.

By streamlining the proposal process, we expect:

  • Higher quality proposals
  • Less time to go from proposal creation to execution
  • A more transparent and legible governance process
  • Reduced manual delegate work and governance fatigue

By outlining a path to smartly invest in decentralized infrastructure for growth we expect:

  • To define what “good” is - and create a plan to get there
  • To empower the largest Layer 2 with a purpose-built decentralized solution
  • To position Arbitrum DAO for massive, unconstrained, and coordinated growth

We also know that there is a lot we need to improve about governance as Arbitrum scales. While we address the most immediate need by streamlining the proposal process, we think it’s important to deep dive into the remaining governance needs of the DAO to fully define and prioritize the next phase of governance improvement. The output of our research process will serve as an efficient way to align the DAO and drive us towards an ideal state of governance going forward that can be funded via a follow-up proposal. “The ideal state of Arbitrum governance” report will include recommendations on the future of delegation structures, collaboration tools, voting mechanisms, performance metrics, and capture resistance.

This proposal contributes to Arbitrum Community Values by making the Arbitrum DAO more socially inclusive, technically inclusive, and user-focused. Our proposed improvements make it easier for contributors and delegates of all backgrounds and technical abilities to engage with the proposal process.


With the proposal, we will organize, unify, accelerate, and integrate the Arbitrum DAO proposal process, while also defining the ideal future state of governance. We’ve included a recorded demo and clickable prototype of the proposed experience along with a written specification for all the features added.

Video Demo

Clickable Prototype


  • Implement an improved proposal template (see Appendix A) into a structured proposal creation application with character limits to enforce standardization of proposal descriptions.
  • Include a voter guide in the proposal template to make it easier for delegates to evaluate a proposals impacts and limitations.


  • Integrate the entire lifecycle of a proposal into a streamlined, continuous user experience on Tally
  • Build a bi-directional Tally / Discourse integration so that new proposal forum posts are created on Tally. Note that this integration will require Tally to have permissions to integrate specifically with the Arbitrum Foundation-administered instance of Discourse.


  • Establish the norm of including a “voter guide” with each proposal that summarizes key issues and arguments both for and against the proposal.
  • Create a simplified temperature check experience that allows proposals to be eligible to be submitted for onchain vote once they receive enough for and abstain votes to reach quorum.
  • Automatically relay votes from the temp check phase to the onchain vote, as long as there are no changes to proposal.
    • Allow votes to be changed during the 3-day waiting period between submitting the proposal onchain and the opening of the voting period.
  • Add a cancel() function to the Arbitrum DAO’s implementation of OpenZeppelin Governor so that proposal creators can cancel onchain proposals if there are mistakes.


  • Integrate votable token supply (ie. not delegated to the exclude address) throughout the Tally governance application, including proposal participation rate.
  • Support late quorum extension on Tally so onchain proposals are automatically extended on Tally when late quorum extension is triggered.
  • Show target quorum per proposal for Arbitrum and for each proposal.
  • Full proposal execution integration by dynamically showing each phase of proposal execution (e.g. timelock queued, outbox executed, etc.) with accurate time stamps.

Define the ideal state

  • Recommend ideal delegation structures.
  • Define use cases for collaboration tools and suggested solutions.
  • Select ideal voting mechanisms.
  • Outline performance metrics.
  • Document capture resistance strategies.

Steps to Implement

  1. Write the smart contract spec and develop contract changes for adding cancel() to the Arbitrum DAO OpenZeppelin Governor implementation
  2. Develop governance application
    1. Streamlined template
    2. Voter guide
    3. Proposal lifecycle integration
    4. Bi-directional Tally / Discourse integration
    5. Accelerated temp check
    6. Temp check vote relayer
    7. Votable supply
    8. Late quorum extension
    9. Target quorum per proposal
    10. Proposal execution integration
  3. Define the ideal state of decentralized governance
    1. Landscape assessment - who is doing decentralized governance well?
    2. Learn and execute experiments in decentralized governance
    3. Solidify “good governance” outcome metrics
    4. Draft and receive community input on the RFP
    5. Publish the RFP to the market


Milestone One: Organize and Unify

6 weeks with two developers

  • Implement new proposal template
  • Add voter guide
  • Develop bidirectional Tally <> Discourse integration

Milestone Two: Accelerate

10 weeks with two developers

  • Add simplified temp check
  • Automatically relay temp check votes

Milestone Three: Integrate

6 weeks with two developers

  • Add cancel function
  • Integrate votable token supply
  • Support late quorum extension
  • Show target quorum per proposal
  • Complete full proposal execution integration

Milestone Four: Define the ideal state

10 weeks with research and RFP team of two

  • Process
    • Estimated research: five weeks
    • RFP drafting and community input: three weeks
    • RFP evaluation and selection: two weeks
  • Recommend ideal delegation structures
  • Define use cases for collaboration tools and suggested solutions
  • Select ideal voting mechanisms
  • Outline performance metrics
  • Document capture resistance strategies



  • We think it’s important to consider delegate time saved per proposal with conservative estimates
    • We estimate that something like ~400 delegates actively vote on each Arbitrum DAO proposal
    • By optimizing the proposal template, adding the voter guide, pulling the full proposal process into one tool, and making it so delegates only have to vote once, we estimate that we can save delegates an average of 30 minutes of research time per proposals
    • The DAO creates about two proposals per month
    • Time saved value
      • Estimated delegates per proposal: 400
      • Time saved per delegate per proposal: .5 hours
      • Opportunity cost of delegate time: $150/hr
      • Proposals per month: 2
      • Total: $60,000/month
  • We believe an improved proposal experience will increase valuable contributions to the Arbitrum
    • Potential contributors will be more likely to create valuable proposals
    • Delegates will be more likely to unblock and sponsor valuable proposals because they will have more time to contribute
    • Voters will have greater context and thus be able to make better informed decisions.
  • We believe that by doing the work to define the ideal state of Arbitrum governance, we will save the DAO many cycles of one-off research processes and coordination

Requested compensation: $400,000 - $600,000 USD equivalent in ARB

Appendix A: New Proposal Template


  • A unique identifier for the proposal.

Constitutional / Non-Constitutional

  • Constitutional AIPs are those that modify the text or procedures of the Constitution or AIP-1, install or modify software on any chain, or take any action that requires “chain owner” permission on any chain.
  • Non-Constitutional AIPs are all other AIPs, such as those that request funds/grants or provide general guidelines or information to the community.


  • Two or three sentences that summarize the AIP.

Voter Guide

  • Two short sections that detail the reasons to vote FOR a proposal and the reasons to vote AGAINST a proposal.
  • This section is meant to make it easier to understand the primary benefits and potential downsides of a proposal, without requiring that the voter reads the entire proposal.

Expected Impact

  • Details about what the proposal expects to accomplish directly and what the downstream effects will be.

Key Terms (optional)

  • Definitions for any terms that are necessary to understand this proposal and that aren’t defined within the Constitution.


  • Information about what the proposal will do, necessary background information about motivation or rationale, and any other information needed to describe the proposals scope or aim.

Steps to Implement

  • Tangible steps to accomplish the proposals objectives.


  • Estimations of how long each step of the proposal will take, as well as any significant milestones to be achieved.


  • The total cost to implement the AIP