Cardano Publishes New Research Paper on Key Blockchain Governance Properties


Cardano, a leading blockchain project, has published a new research paper on decentralized blockchain governance properties.

Cardano Publishes Paper on Blockchain Governance

The study was conducted by Aggelos Kiayias and Philip Lazos, blockchain researchers at IOHK, a blockchain research and engineering company best known for the Cardano project.

The paper, first shared by Cardano’s co-founder Charles Hoskinson, outlined many fundamental properties decentralized protocols such as Bitcoin and Ethereum could utilize to perform decision-making in order to enhance its system evolution. 

Although each blockchain is built differently with specific features and performance, the study outlined four important classes of properties that blockchains could adopt to improve their governance. 

Blockchain Voting Systems and Security

The first class deals with the voting systems used for decision-making. It covers issues such as users’ eligibility to vote on upgrades and proposals, cryptographic cyber security, and incentives. 

The paper noted that blockchain platforms should always consider who is granted suffrage in the decision-making process. The researchers advised that blockchain developers should always implement a one-person voting mechanism that permits only one user to submit a vote. 

The study also named  pareto efficiency as one of the techniques blockchain platforms can use to improve their voting system. Pareto helps improve blockchain decision making by analyzing individual data collected into specific actions.

The second class focused on the issue of security. The researchers mentioned confidentiality and verifiability as techniques for improving security in blockchain governance.

Confidentiality (privacy), a core component of Bitcoin, deals with protecting the real-life identity of voters while verifiability, which complements confidentiality, allows blockchain voting systems to legitimize votes before decision making. 

Incentives and Timeliness

The third class discussed in the paper was incentives, which covered accountability and sustainability. According to the researchers, voters should be held accountable for their votes because any decision that is approved based on community governance will affect every member of the ecosystem.

To further support this point, the study referenced the accountability mechanism used in the Polkadot network.

“Examples in the blockchain space include Polkadot’s governance system, where voters who vote in favor of a proposal will have their stake locked until the proposal is “enacted” or deployed,” the researchers wrote.

In terms of sustainability, the paper stated that changes in blockchain governance relies upon two important players in the industry – the developers who create applications and propose changes and the community that decides whether or not to implement the changes. According to the researchers, contributions between these key players help the platform evolve and therefore deserve to be rewarded. 

The last class of blockchain governance systems discussed in the paper was timeliness, which covered the area of liveness. The study noted that blockchain protocols should be able to reach a decision within the shortest time possible in the event of attacks and other emergency cases that require urgent decision making.

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