HomeEtherumUpdate on Ethereum Foundation Grants - Third Round

Update on Ethereum Foundation Grants – Third Round

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We have been working hard to get to know many incredible people and projects, and we are thrilled to announce the recipients of the Wave III of the Ethereum Foundation Grants Program!

We started 2018 with a blog post to encourage scalability research for first and second-layer solutions. Since then, we have committed over $11M to 52 projects dedicated to advancing the Ethereum ecosystem. Grants have funded multiple plasma and state channel implementations, diverse client research, enhanced developer frameworks, security audits, and more. You can find them all in the previous posts: Wave I & Wave II.

A Look into the Selection Process

Since the Grants Program has gained momentum, we have received feedback requesting greater transparency into our processes and a deeper look into the various types of projects considered. Here’s a funding snapshot and grant process update:

Funding Snapshot

The EF Grant Program provided more than $11M in support to 52 projects since early 2018 (Waves I, II, and III).

Our funding allocation remains true to the program’s original purpose: nearly $7M for scalability projects, almost $7M for security projects, almost $2M for #buidl projects (projects that improve user experience), and $1.6M for DevEx projects (projects that improve developer experience). While dollar allocation remains heavily focused on scalability, the number of projects funded are more evenly distributed between categories.

Grants Process Update

The EF Grants program is constantly evolving. With this round, we’ve refined our internal processes to ensure timely fund disbursement. We understand how quickly the space moves and believe in the importance of expedient fund dispersal to the front line. Eventually, we aim to award grants on a rolling basis in order to provide more immediate support to the projects and teams leading the charge for decentralization and transparency.

Ideal applicants come with strong technical knowledge, project roadmap, and show a commitment to fostering collaboration within the ecosystem. For more information about applicant expectations and process workflow, please see our Applicant Expectations and FAQs.

Wave III

With each round, the grants program evolves. Our goal is to effectively support the critical infrastructure of our young community. There are many tracks to lay down before Ethereum “makes it” and it’s been incredible to see all the projects working to lay down these tracks.

The applicant pool for Wave III offered a record number of strong teams and innovative ideas. It’s fascinating and humbling to see the diversity of projects from around the world with a shared interest in fostering the development of Ethereum. These are folks spending their free time reading ethresear.ch, developing new libraries and wallet designs, and engaging in communities discussing the latest in DApp usability and security…and we love them for that.

Without further ado…

🎉 We are proud to announce our Wave III Finalists! 🎉

Scalability

StarkWare — $4M with 6K ETH Performance-based Bounties. Development of standards report and production-quality software for optimized STARK-friendly hash functions and toolingForce Move Game Framework — $300K. Force move games state channel frameworkHarmony — $90K. Minimal sharding and random beacon chain

Security

Usability

Developer experience (DevEx grant)

Building for the end user (#buidl grant)

DappNode — $250K. Mass full node adoptionUniswap — $100k. DEX frameworkNethermind — $50K. .NET client implementationthaEth — $20K. Gnosis Safe UI Design

Education

Hackternhips

Scalability will continue to be a focus of EF grants, but we also look to fund other critical work. This includes better UX, new clients, high-level languages, better developer tools, and efforts to make Ethereum applications more secure. With Wave III, we expanded into education and community efforts in order to help bring new talent into the ecosystem.

Want to #BUIDL with us?  See the dev wishlist below and follow links to learn more. If you can imagine a project relating to the topics listed, submit an application and talk to us!

Wishlist for the next grant round

Scalability

More payment and/or state channel implementations 💚💙💜More plasma implementations 💚💙More shasper implementations 🔥Improving efficiency of existing clients such as geth & parity 💚💙A tokenless “Lightning Network” for Ethereum 💙WebAssembly R&D 🔥

Privacy

STARKS R&D 🔥BLS12-381 implementations in new languages 🔥libp2p Python implementation 🔥

Usability

Improve private key management and transacting in Ethereum 💚💙Alternative wallet / client designs 💙💜Standards and portability between wallets 💙Tooling that improves developer experience 💚💙💜Improved documentation & developer/user education videos 💚💙💜Tokenless end user products 💜Vyper development 💜More security focused high-level languages 💜Non-transferable ID tokens 🔥

Security

Security audits for Vyper 💙💜Smart contract audits 💚💜Particularly, audits for ERC20, ERC223, ERC721, multisig wallets, vaults 💜Tooling that prevents vulnerable code 💚💙💜IDE with a visual debugger 🔥Privacy Solutions

Hackternships

You already have a job (or school)? No problem! Suggest a problem you want to solve and we’re happy to fund a 10-week $10K externship for your spare-time working on Ethereum. 💚💙💜(Successful projects will be featured at a developer conference. We are also looking to hire and fund from this pool of side projects. If you’re looking for where to start, look at the list above.)

💚 —  Wave I / 💙 — Wave II / 💜 — Wave III / 🔥 — New to wishlist

For more inspiration…

Read the original DevGrant post.Read the post that kicked off the current program.Find the grantees from Wave I and Wave II.Keep up to date with research here and here.

Bonus: Grant Ops Contest!

With the growing number of applicants, we’ll be needing to create an official website for the Grants Program. Do you have any ideas on how to make the website fun, transparent, and useful to future grant applicants? (mmhmm) Great! Because we will be running a contest and crowdsourcing ideas from all of you. Selected ideas will receive some unicorn love and some ETH. Stay tuned for details on how to participate!

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