Research on delegation framework


Various governance parameters were updated a few weeks ago with PSP-IPΔ33. Among them, the quorum, with the idea that a delegate format will soon be set up within the DAO

Until now, this quorum has always been reached, sometimes with difficulty.

Total potential voting power is 365.4M (as at 19 July 2023), the following table shows the theoretical turnout for the last few votes.

Voting power is linked to the number of staked $PSP, and we should bear in mind that this can change rapidly.

(For information only, the total estimated voting power today may have fluctuated over the last few votes)

Let’s talk directly about the elephant in the room: a single voter now has just over 17% of the global voting power.

As the subject is the introduction of a delegate system, I’ve deliberately omitted this top voter to get an idea of the participation of the wider community (right-hand column).

This is very low, between 4 and 10% over the last 4 votes. But that’s not typical of ParaSwap, as many DAOs have a low participation rate.

Consequence of this low participation, some votes might not have gone through without the presence of voter No. 1.
I think it’s very positive that the top ParaSwap stakers are getting involved in the DAO, although the participation rate of other members is very low.

So we need to work on increasing this participation rate.

The updated governance parameters were also intended to bring DAO members together around these votes:

  • Temp check to warn the community before the votes

  • Organise the votes on the same day of the week to get the community used to them.

It has to be said that this has not yet borne fruit and that, as indicated in the PSP-IPΔ33, a delegate system seems necessary to boost this factor.

So what is a delegate system and how does it work?

In the way the DAO currently works, with Snapshot, the delegate is a module which is activated in Snapshot, and which makes it very easy to delegate your voting power to another address.

The goal is that the address that receives the voting power takes part in the DAO votes when the address that gives its voting power cannot or does not have the time to do so.
At the same time, everyone will be able to recover their voting rights and vote if they are not happy with the direction taken by the delegate.

Practical and flexible.

Looking at the well-established DAOs, this system is already in place, but it also comes with a structure that allows it to be used optimally.

The idea is not just to activate the Snapshot module, but that the ‘dormant’ voting powers can finally be used via personalities representing the members of the DAO.

Here is a recap:

1/ A code of conduct and application framework for the delegate
What a delegate needs to respect and how he can apply.

2/ Delegate apply on the governance forum
Specific area to be created in the forum similar to “Governance Proposals” or “DAO Contributors”.
Code of conduct as a pinned topic
Application framework as a pinned topic
Application thread from candidate delegate

3/ Module activated on Snapshot

4/ The delegate informs of vote’s decisions taken or to be taken and of the thinking behind these decisions via the governance forum
I think that this will happen naturally, because I think that voting delegations will naturally gravitate towards the delegates who take the most account of their community by informing them as much as possible.

It should also be noted that this module has already been activated in the past at the initiative of a member of the community.

The test didn’t last but I think it deserves to be repeated today because we’re in a different situation now.

I also think that extensive and frequent communication on the official accounts would be a major asset to enable the 70% of non-participating stakers to be aware of this initiative and to put their voting power to (good) use.

The aim of this research is to get feedback from the community on this delegation structure, its usefulness and composition.

If validated, the detail of the resulting proposal would be to:

  • Validate the proposed code of conduct (the content will be proposed at a later stage - Before going to the proposal)

  • Validate the delegate application framework (the content will be proposed at a later stage - Before going to the proposal)

  • Validate the creation of the delegation area in the governance forum.

  • Validate the opening of the delegate module in snapshot (although this was activated without a vote last time, I think the snapshot parameters, a major ParaSwap governance tool, should be decided by the community).

I can’t wait to see what ideas, changes or additions you have in mind for this system and to increase the participation rate.

The quorum and its level is also a subject in its own right that I’d like to tackle in another research post.


An idea that makes sense, and a line of reasoning that’s already well advanced.

I would add the possibility of having specific channels (discord) for each delegate. This way, communication will be simple with his “community”.

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Definitely a good idea for the DAO to implement, will help having active voting power for little stakers who don’t bother voting, but can trust an active member of the community to be vigilant on that.

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