CIP-115: CityDAO Academic Conference and Journal

If you support this proposal going to Snapshot, please give it a “like” below. This does not mean that you are voting yes. It just means that you support it going to Snapshot for a vote.


This CIP seeks funding for ScottA to continue to assist in planning the first annual CityDAO Academic Conference and to continue work with numerous authors on the CityDAO Journal. ScottA was previously bountied to work on these tasks, but as the Q3 Education & Research Guild budget has been reduced by 50%, his work is now being presented as an independent project. This CIP requests $1200 + 2 Citizenship NFTs per month for his work.


One of the most exciting initiatives in the Education & Research Guild is the development of the first annual CityDAO Academic Conference, which will be held virtually from Sept 3-4, 2022. The event brings together various experts in different aspects of blockchain and web3 education. The ultimate goal is to start a positive feedback loop intertwining a cutting-edge web3 city with education. Education and cities induce powerful positive externalities. This dynamic has boot-strapped great cities in the past and is a model for doing so in the future.

Connected with the conference is CityDAO Journal, which is a method to explore the ideas that will build web3 cities and establish CityDAO as a thought leader in this space. The Journal seeks to discuss vital concepts and to push them forward while at the same time producing content to attract people via thoughtful engagement.

ScottA recently finished a Ph.D. in economics and is currently set to publish two journal articles. He has a strong research background and is highly qualified to lead such a project.


ScottA has helped to curate relationships with 45 student blockchain associations, 30 education-related DAOs, and numerous other potential contributors. Contact methods have included emailing, engaging on Twitter and discord, and via LinkedIn. Thus far, of the groups contacted, about 35% have replied, and 25% plan to participate in the conference.

ScottA has spent over 60 hours contacting, following up, and conversing with the above-noted groups. This will be valuable in numerous ways for CityDAO moving forward – building a city will require many partnerships and resources. We now have keynote speakers, 5 panel discussions and 2 roundtable discussions. He has additionally developed and maintained a detailed spreadsheet of all contacts, which is valuable to CityDAO.

During this past quarter, ScottA has also helped to oversee the CityDAO Journal. This has produced content related to Quadratic Voting/Funding and Social Tokens. The articles have gained considerable readership using metrics such as twitter likes and retweets. One citizen stated that finding the articles was the reason they joined CityDAO. ScottA has spent over 45 hours writing, editing and developing others’ content, and doing research related to the articles.

Finally, ScottA has contributed to initiatives such as the CityDAO book (currently writing multiple chapters), the Study Group (attended all the groups and led the discussion on 2 occasions), and broadly to the ultimate vision of CityDAO University.


Successful delivery of the CityDAO Academic Conference

Success metrics will include the number of total citizens and non-citizens attending, satisfaction, and engagement. A metric will be derived called “key connections.” A “key connection” will be established if a participant attended the majority of the conference and, in a follow-up survey, indicated a desire to have further involvement with CityDAO.

Continued Maintenance of the CityDAO Journal

The articles should be measured as successful if they attract traffic and encourage involvement in CityDAO. Metrics have not yet been established, but ScottA will work in partnership with the media guild to do so.

The articles produced will focus on quality over quantity. The goal would be 1-2 articles per month and should be highly aligned with topics in the Web3 space and CityDAO. This will include articles that may result from the CityDAO Academic Conference

Establish the CityDAO Think Tank

One key goal of the Education & Research Guild is to pivot from maintaining numerous independent initiatives to becoming a think tank for projects that are proposed by citizens. ScottA will work with David to develop a process for citizens who require research to be matched with key resources and for those resources to be properly overseen, evaluated, bountied and compensated to maximize quality and effectiveness.


During Q2, ScottA was bountied at 20 hours per week at $30 per hour. Given budgetary restrictions, this CIP proposes that his hours be reduced to 10 hours per week for a rate of $300 per week + 2 Citizenship NFTs per month.


Thanks for the detailed proposal @Da3vid , seems like high reward low cost. I fully support it.

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Without a requirement for external peer review, I am concerned that this will lack the rigor necessary to be than a resume-booster for @ScottA.

Worse, legitimate academics (who understand why peer review is necessary) will write this off as another shill and think less of CityDAO (e.g. we are not a adequate partner for experiments).

Ultimately, I see this setting us back, attracting novices rather than experts, and making the community more insular.

I would support this proposal if we instead sought to partner with an established academic journal and publish through it. Subsequently we would build credibility and ultimately establish our own from a much stronger baseline.

This is what we are doing. The project is built on the idea of connecting with traditional academic institutions and Web3 education. For example, see partnerships with JournoDAO, and Smart Contract Research Forum, to name a few. The whole goal is to work incrementally to build these exact relationships.

In the meantime, the Journal doesn’t need to be a peer-reviewed academic Journal. It’s just the title we chose, given that is what we are working towards.

Maybe calling this the CityDAO Journal is a misnomer. It is NOT meant to be a peer-reviewed level publication for academics. It is meant to attract the “new intellectuals” as Antonio Gramsci calls them, the thought leaders who do not require expensive pedigrees from institutions that declare who gets to be smart. This is meant to be a curated platform for CityDAO so that it is not a blog, or a collection of unresearched opinions. It is a forum for those with interests in CityDAO-related topics to write coherently and cogently about the topic.

Additionally, we are working on partnerships with other DAOs and organizations that encourage actual peer-reviewed articles. It makes a lot more sense to work with them cooperatively than to compete with them.

In support! Definitely think the us is a worthwhile endeavor.

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I think the title Journal is ok. A Journal is really just a collection of written pieces.

It is interesting, though, to discuss. One of our main goals with CityDAO University is to disrupt traditional and outdated academic structures. Just my personal two cents, but the current academic peer-reviewed process is so broken it is hard to imagine it will even exist in a few years. The bedrock, of course, is sound. Get others with credentials to scrutinize your work. But, the amount of money and bureaucracy involved in the current process is inefficient and wasteful and doesn’t even do an amazing job of producing the best research. It’s also a process that can be gamed in ways that support the wealthy but less cutting edge institutions… anyway; I could go on; the whole system needs Web3 disruption.

The goal is to intertwine a city of the future that flourishes by disrupting traditional costs to build with an equally more efficient and responsive academic system. The combination would be a truly disruptive and powerful city, something to strive towards.


Who ensures this level of quality, the editors?

Having worked on the QV article, there was no review or editorial process that ensured the level of quality that you’re describing. I am concerned that non-experts will take advantage of unknowing members of our community to pass themselves off as experts (I have seen this happen repeatedly in multiple domains of CityDAO and believe it’s more likely to happen here given the clear distribution model and reputational benefits.)

It would be useful to bring in an independent editor here, ideally from an established, non-Web3 publication or an independent organization such as the RadicalxChange foundation. I know some of the folks at JournoDao and no offense to them, but they’re relatively inexperienced.

Also, I disagree with @ScottA on the usage of the term “Journal”. It brings with it a specific association for academics familiar with other journals, and will set their baseline perception for ours. Disrupting the peer-review process is nice, but I would recommend setting this up in order to first establish serious credibility; this will help attract the caliber of academics necessary to achieve your goals.

Same! Both the Academic Conference and Journal are suitable for CityDAO, as the community is rich in intellectuals and innovators. Moreover, the projects could bring even more edge in time.