Using on-chain voting for information aggregation

Brett Falk

On-chain voting is widely used to select block producers, set parameters in DeFi protocols (e.g., interest rates / fees), and manage treasury funds. In this talk, Brett Falk (Penn) examines how effective different types of voting mechanisms are for tapping into the “wisdom of the crowd” and how resistant they are to adversarial control. Brett focuses on two common on-chain voting mechanisms: initiative voting and approval voting. Under initiative voting, participants propose “initiatives” and token-holders cast yes / no votes for / against the proposal. An alternative voting mechanism is approval voting, where users can “approve” of multiple different proposals, and the proposal with the most approvals is selected.

About the speaker

Brett is a research assistant professor in the Computer and Information Science department at the University of Pennsylvania. His research focuses on cryptography and blockchain protocols. Brett’s cryptographic work focuses on designing cryptographic protocols for secure multiparty computation. In the blockchain space, he has worked on stablecoin policy, NFT royalties, and on-chain voting mechanisms.

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