A Quick Guide to ICON Decentralized Autonomous Governance System


Mar 10, 2020

3 min read

A Quick Guide to ICON Decentralized Autonomous Governance System

The ICON Network aims to become one of the first fully Operational Decentralized Autonomous Organization (DAO). This protocol needs to be flexible to be able to adapt to an ever-changing network, political, and macroeconomic conditions. Furthermore, it has to be transparent and immutable to protect the system from corruption and foul play.

This is why the governance system will be put in place. Now, before we dive into the governance system, it is vital to know the most critical terms connected to it.

  • 🧑‍💻 Public Representative (P-Rep) is a representative of the ICON Network that contributes to the ecosystem through participation in block validation and on-chain governance.

A total of 100 P-Reps can be elected. 22 top P-reps, also referred to as Main P-Reps, who will produce blocks, verify blocks, and participate in governance while the other 78 Sub P-Reps add further security to the network by storing a copy of the ledger.

  • 💻 A Decentralized Application Booster Program (DBP) was initially thought of to select and reward DApps to help the value increase of the ICON Network. However, according to the latest developments, this system will no longer be created.
  • 📃The Contribution Proposal System (CPS) is designed for Iconists to apply for funding, and Main P-Reps will decide the decision to grant funding. According to the latest developments, it is most likely that this system will be used to allow DApps funding instead of the DBP. To learn more about the recent developments, or to share your thoughts about CPS, visit the ICON forum.

Completely Decentralized Autonomous Governance

An on-chain governance system needs to have the right economic incentives and a flexible governance framework to be able to operate efficiently. ICON designed a Delegated Proof of Contribution protocol, to give rewards to the most active and contributive members of the ICON Network. These rewards get paid in the form of ICON’s native cryptocurrency ICX.

In the original plan written by ICON, four groups would receive a fair share of wealth and governance power; EEP Operators, DApp Operators, and Node Operators as well as P-Reps. However, after recent updates, only P-Reps will be allowed this privilege so far. As the idea is still in ongoing development, it might be that in the future, other groups will also be allowed. To receive governance power, one needs to gain votes. All ICONists that hold ICX can casts votes and, therefore, directly participate in the delegation of authority to an individual or organization.

A governance variable system is brought in place, to make sure that the ICON Network can withstand in a world of ever-changing conditions. This system enables a representative to control currency rates, and the size of rewards, different variables designed for this purpose makes this possible.

📃 The Network Proposal System

The governance system also relies on a set of Network Proposals. They all have different characteristics. However, most of them can be executed autonomously.

The submission of Network Proposals, view, and vote go via a governance dashboard that is created by the ICON Foundation.

There are a couple of different Network Proposals; they are explained below.

  • 🤓 Text Proposals rely on good-faith, which makes them less secure than other proposals. Text Proposals are open-ended proposals submitted by P-Reps and, if approved, are executed.
  • 🕵️‍♂️ P-Rep Disqualification Proposal is a proposal that Main P-Reps can present to, as the name suggests, disqualify a malicious P-Rep.
  • 👎 A Malicious SCORE Proposal is a proposal that can also be submitted by Main P-Reps, and it is aimed at freezing or unfreezing SCORE. To learn more about SCORE, click here.
  • 💼 The Step Price Proposals focus on giving an autonomous ability to adjust the base transaction fee on the ICON Network (limited to a 30% increase or decrease).
  • 🧐 The final kind of proposal is a Revision Proposal, which allows P-Reps to update their software version, without having to discuss it with any other members.

Contribution Proposal Updates

According to the ICON community, in the future, contribution-based proposals will no longer be based on delegation. Furthermore, it will become a more budget-based system, it will function in almost the exact way as the current ICON grant program, except that the decision-makers are now the Main P-Reps and no longer the ICON Foundation.

📌 Conclusion

The Decentralized Autonomous Governance System will be a highly sophisticated, but maybe a bit hard to understand at first. However, this innovative structure on the blockchain will be groundbreaking. Adaptability and flexibility are critical to this system. We’re curious to see what the future will bring for the ICON Network and its decentralized goals.

Sources — If You Want to Know More

DISCLAIMER: This is not financial advice. Staking, delegation, and cryptocurrencies involve a high degree of risk, and there is always the possibility of loss, including the failure of all staked digital assets. Additionally, delegators are at risk of slashing in case of security or liveness faults on some protocols. We advise you to do your due diligence before choosing a validator.

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