Science | Ethereum Research Foundation Grant Program

I. Overview (time, target)

The Ethereum Foundation grant program was initiated by the Ethereum Foundation and officially announced on January 2, 2018. The program is dedicated to providing financial support to research and development teams and promoting Ethereum to improve scalability. In addition, the plan also decided to expand support for practical and safe projects. All projects do not involve token sales and focus solely on building useful products and experiences.

Second, the appropriation plan rules (scope of proposals, application procedures, assessment rules, funding methods)

The grant program is open to any individual or group. Applicants only need to send relevant information to the designated email address, including: (1) official name of the project, applicant and core developer information; (2) description of team information, including projects The team's involvement in Ethereum or other blockchain activities; (3) the purpose and impact of scalability; (4) estimated project timeline and development milestones, estimated appropriation amount and total amount required for project completion .

The appropriation plan focuses on the long-term impact of the project on the Ethereum ecosystem, and tries to avoid appropriation for the application layer. At the same time, it gives priority to open source projects for the Ethereum ecosystem that lacks its own sustainability. It does not exclude grants to already have independent business models or have other Projects from sources of funding. To ensure the fairness of the grant, the main criteria include: (1) the urgency of the problem; (2) how many people are solving the problem; (3) the additional value that will be added after the grant; and (4) sustainability; 5) Matching the project with the amount of the grant; (6) Unity with the value of the Ethereum. The grant program provides $50,000 to $1,000,000 in funding based on scope, size and quality.

Services provided by the Ethereum Foundation for grants include: (1) non-dilution funds; (2) technical advice; (3) connecting more users; and (4) sharing your work on the platform.

Third, the summary of the grants

Grants can be divided into five broad categories, including scalability, usability, security, hackternship, and others. According to the total of 4 appropriations for the whole year of 2018, the total amount of funds for the whole year is more than 14 million US dollars, and 70 projects are funded. Among them, the total amount of scalability grants accounted for 58%, reflecting the emphasis of the grant program to improve the scalability of Ethereum; usability breakdown for developer availability (DevEx) and user-oriented availability (buidl) The proportion of grants is 8% and 12% respectively, and 13% of the safety can be regarded as an integral part of the comprehensive development of Ethereum's ecology, which is equally important. In addition, 1% of the funding plan is used to fund amateurs interested in Ethereum, providing them with 10 weeks of 10,000 US dollars in their own, to promote the technical development of all aspects of Ethereum.

The scalability grant focuses on the use of sharding and plasma expansion, state channels and the development of tokenless lightning networks. Among them, StarkWare, the highest single project grant, received $4 million, mainly using STARK technology to improve the scalability and privacy of the blockchain. L4 Research, which provides zero-knowledge, profile transparency and post-quantum security encryption, was also obtained. A relatively high grant of $1.5 million for the development of state channels. The average allocation for the remaining projects is about 150,000 yuan.

The usability grant program focuses on the enhancement of various tools, such as the ease of development and application of various wallets, the client, browser development environment, and ease of use. In addition to the $1 million grant from the ENS Foundation project, the average grant for the remaining projects was approximately $87,500. For the ENS Foundation, the Foundation has a long-term relationship with the project, which has matured and is a domain name service of Ethereum. In addition, projects that receive such grants have multiple types of reward platforms for developers to promote community engagement.

Security projects primarily include audits of Solidity, Vyper, and smart contracts. The number of projects funded in this category is small, but about half of the projects that receive the grant receive a higher amount.

For the part-time job subsidy, a total of 10 people are allocated within one year. Their development content is various, including browser, WebAssembly, Developer onboarding documentation, fragmentation technology, API development and so on.

The remaining grants also involve user involvement, Ethereum education and client development.

In summary, the foundation grant program mainly has strong financial support, focusing on Ethereum's scalable technical research, while paying attention to the development of all aspects of the entire ecology, focusing on integrity.

Appendix 1. 2018 Scalability Appropriation Project Statistics

Appendix 2. 2018 Availability Appropriation Project Statistics

Appendix 3. 2018 Security Appropriation Project Statistics

Appendix 4. 2018 part-time appropriation project statistics

Appendix 5. 2018 Other Project Statistics