Where did the Ethereum Foundation spend its money last year?

Source: Ethereum Foundation Blog

Translator: Odaily Planet Daily Qin Xiaofeng

Recently, the Ethereum Foundation released a report announcing the latest progress of the "Ecosystem Support Program" ("ESP") and the use of financial funds in 2019.

In 2019, the Ethereum Foundation's newly allocated funds totaled US $ 6.52 million. According to the 2019 spring report (click to read), the foundation will invest $ 30 million for key projects on the entire Ethereum ecosystem. This budget will not be affected regardless of whether the price of ETH rises or falls; in addition, the US $ 19 million is planned to support the development of ETH 2.0, US $ 8 million is used to support the development of "ETH 1.0", and US $ 3 million is used for the introduction and incentive of development talents.

1. ESP recent progress

The Ecosystem Support Program (ESP) is a branch of the Ethereum Foundation, dedicated to providing support to the entire Ethereum ecosystem team, including financial (funding) and non-financial support. ESP is also an extension of the Grants program, which mainly focuses on financial support.

In the spring report of 2019, the Ethereum Foundation first proposed the plan and had some ideas. Since then, the foundation has continued to provide direct financial support, on the other hand, it has helped ESP to establish links with other potential funding sources. In addition, the foundation has also provided industry experts with advice, community exposure, access to cloud services and other infrastructure. .

In the past 9 months, the Foundation has collected feedback from various parties and improved the application process. The changes are as follows:

  • Standardized ESP review application process;
  • Expansion of experts in this field, which can be used to assist peer review applications or provide advice for applicants' projects;
  • Pay more attention to providing 1V1 feedback to applicants;
  • Work more closely with accepted projects to establish clearer goals, roadmaps, and common expectations.

The Foundation is also working to increase the reputation of ESP and attract more high-quality applications. To this end, the Foundation has also made some changes in communication methods, from improving existing channels to adding some new pages to the ESP website.

(ESP official website)

Some changes are non-obvious, but the Foundation hopes that they can inform the community and better help potential applicants. Now, you can follow the latest news on the homepage of the ESP website and learn about the activities that ESP will participate in under the epidemic.

Frequently asked questions have been added to the website, and the survey format has been improved. The most important thing is that the website has also added a "featured project" display, which regularly displays some of the projects supported by ESP and their related situations.

In addition, the site also added a "wish list", in order to attract people to pay attention to some specific areas, such as security, ETH2.0 and privacy. Please note that the priority of this list in ESP is not high, and ESP's vision is not limited to these areas. Rather, I hope to see more applications in this list. I hope this list will inspire people who want to participate.

Next, ESP will regularly publish blog posts to announce new recipients of funding. But this is just the beginning. In the future, ESP will also focus on the work to be done by the supported team. You can pay close attention to more new content in the coming months, as well as regular updates to existing content.

2. Financial usage in 2019

Although we are working hard to improve the "ecosystem support plan" throughout 2019, we have also continued to support the development of the entire Ethereum ecosystem. Funding is only one way we provide support. There are many excellent teams that are not Ethereum-funded recipients, either because they have received funding or because their research direction is not suitable for our funding. However, we still do our best to support these important contributors (for example, to help their projects expand their impact).

Of course, financial support is still the main part of our support for the entire Ethereum ecosystem. In 2019, more than 70 projects received financial support from the Ethereum Foundation.

Listed below are the new funds allocated to each team in 2019, excluding the following three situations: regular financial support, previously received funding awards, and funds provided to other Ethereum Foundation teams.

For each funded project name and abstract, we also made a table (click to read). The details of this funding are as follows:


The development of ETH2.0 is in full swing. Through the efforts of many teams, Ethereum has also become more scalable and secure, and Proof of Stake (POS) has also been introduced. The Ethereum Foundation has also funded many Ethereum client teams, who have been working hard to achieve interoperability, improve reliability, and create developer tools.

Eth2 client: USD 1,695,000

Eth2 tools and others: $ 1,459,000

In addition to the funding listed above, the work of ETH2.0 has been supported by regular funding and other channels.

ETH1.X: $ 487,000

To this day, the most important work is to continue to improve Ethereum. Some ETH1.x is still working tirelessly to upgrade Ethereum in the short term. Key areas of focus include stateless Ethereum, improving developer experience, increasing node client diversity, ensuring the sustainability of running complete nodes, and paving the way for the launch of ETH2.0. The following are some ETH1.x funding support projects:

In the future we will share more information about other support work, including Geth, other ETH1.x and stateless research.

Layer 2: USD 1,211,000

The Layer 2 solution supports a variety of applications, which may be too expensive, too slow, too complicated, or impossible to implement directly on the Ethereum base layer. To make Ethereum more useful and scalable, teams and individuals from the entire community will work together in 2019. This work is not only crucial in the short term, it is equally valuable in the long run. Eth 2.0 will also benefit from the greater privacy, scalability, and flexibility provided by Layer 2.

Cryptography and zero-knowledge proof: $ 426,000

Last year, there was more research and development work on cryptography and zero-knowledge proof than ever before. These efforts strengthen the protocol's infrastructure and open up new possibilities for expansion, privacy and security. The goal for 2019 is to take a practical step, and the tools it builds can make it easier for developers to make progress without having a deeper understanding of encryption technology.

Developer experience: $ 1,322,000

Ethereum has opened up a whole new design space for applications. When developers explore this area, they inevitably find new pain points and need new tools. We have invested heavily in enhancing the developer experience on Ethereum, including improving programming languages, software libraries, development tools, node infrastructure, distributed storage, and messaging.

These improvements make it easier for developers to complete more work, so they can focus on their products instead of building their own custom tools. In the end, we hope that they will develop on the basis of Ethereum, which is both simple and interesting.

User experience: $ 213,000

We are always looking for general-purpose tools or upgrades to reduce the friction costs of end users without affecting some decentralized or Ethereum featured products. We need to address some common pain points, such as Gas cost, identity management, address readability, and interoperability, so that DApp developers can more easily serve users anywhere.

Community and education: $ 422,000

In short, the existence of Ethereum is inseparable from its community and those who are committed to developing and enriching the ecosystem. These teams bring people together, whether face-to-face or online, increase the diversity of our global community, and help build a general knowledge base by providing educational materials to everyone for free.

Indirect funding: $ 484,000

A new ecosystem requires new financing methods. The Ethereum ecosystem relies on open source developers and independent thinkers to thrive. To this end, in addition to the traditional structure of companies and organizations, we hope to provide funding for talented contributors, including: donations, venture capital, contracts, and salaries. This category is all about delegating resources to the community, as follows:

We are proud of all the achievements made in 2019, and we will continue to forge ahead in 2020. As always, I am very grateful for the enthusiasm and support of the community.

For more details on all the work of the foundation, we will share a report on the spring of 2020 in the coming days, so stay tuned.

Source: https://blog.ethereum.org/2020/04/01/ecosystem-support-program-allocation-update/