Hello. Much discussion going on these days around Governance and the role of Recognised Delegates.
I want to give my 2 cents on the topic, bringing some ideas from the world of academia.
Governance Problem Today: Delegates need to vote on complex proposals (new CUs, budgets, collaterals, etc). Recognised delegates (even if paid a lot) have:
- limited time available, and
- limited knowledge on technical topics.
Both these constitute inevitable bottlenecks: proposal are constantly growing in number and technical complexity (see, e.g., the recent proposal by DECO).
As a consequence, we are starting to see Delegates having troubles coming up with an opinion and postponing/Abstaining their choices. This is inevitable, as observed by @MakerMan
and similarly, we are getting relatively poor reasons for their votes:
The same situation in Academia:
The above picture is nothing new. In academia, for example, people need to vote on: who deserves tenure this year? which research projects deserves a grant? which faculty should be enlarged/reduced? etc.
The above decisions are frequent, are large in numbers, and involve extremely high levels of technical understanding (e.g., even a respected Prof. in math, say, is unable to properly evaluate a project in applied physics).
The solution: Panels of Experts
what happens, at all levels, is the following:
- there are a number of people who need to make a choice - think of them as our Delegates.
- They form/contact a panel of technical experts of the subject. These should be individuals as free as possible from conflict of interests and well motivated to properly perform the evaluation.
- The experts give a judgment (e.g., a ranking among the projects that have been presented to be funded by a grant), and makes this publicly available.
- The decision makers, look at the the expert evaluation and make their final decision.
What happens in practice, is that very often the (1) decision makers accept (or very slightly modify) the decision of the Panel of experts (3).
Sometimes, however, the decision maker goes against the Expert choice: Example
- the chosen candidate, while excellent, does not have some other characteristic (e.g., we might want to prefer woman vs man to reduce the gender-gap, which is a purely political non-scientific decision).
In such a case the Decision Maker (1) needs to justify, again publicly, their choice and assume (and explain to their backers) the consequences of their decision against the Panel.
My suggestion for MakerDAO.
- We should stop (quickly!) asking delegates to evaluate proposals, or to do due diligence on proposals.
- We should provide delegates the instruments to hire/engage Technical experts.
- We should ask delegates to vote, after having a technical opinion from the experts, explaining their final choice (in accordance or vs the experts).
- The above steps need to be 100% transparent, so that everybody can see who has the final word (the delegates), who is in the panel of experts, what the experts think, and what the final decision is, and why.