RnDAO is an innovation DAO, with a mission to empower humane collaboration. We’re funded by DAOs to serve DAOs and enable a humane vision of Web3. We advance this pursuit by delivering research and incubating tools that facilitate DAO operations and governance.
The problem (Why):
DAOs are likely to be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to reinvent organisations. However, DAOs (and particularly product-oriented DAOs) still depend on many Web2 tools and practices for their operations.
Organisational practices invented for the industrial era, giving us economies of scale but at the cost of 86% of workers being disengaged. Billions of humans long for more agency and meaning at work. But addressing this challenge require us to fundamentally reinvent how we relate to each other and to ourselves.
And in tandem we have Web2 tools that embed Web2 principles. Permission-based access hierarchies, per-seat pricing models, email log-ins, admin accounts, etc., were all designed to facilitate top-down management and centralised teams. Conversely, creating tools for Web3 requires mental models of Web3 organisation. But these models that are still emerging and require applying diverse expertise to avoid repeating history.
To invent better organisations and better systems, we need to gather learnings across organisational science, psychology and neuroscience, self-management practice, regenerative economics, and more. We must combine them with user research, DAO ethnography, rapid experimentation and tight feedback loops.
Problematically, this level of cross-disciplinary research and development is too complex a task for an early-stage startup and even a difficult one for any single DAO. But even if a single organisation achieved it, the output of said R&D is likely to yield insights and solutions beyond what any single organisation can capitalise on, resulting in inefficiencies.
The Solution (what):
We believe the best DAO tooling will be built collaboratively. Instead of doing things halfway, duplicating work, or reinventing the wheel, the projects that thrive will be those that work with their ecosystem, pulling resources together to lead the way in R&D and, as a result, gain positive feedback loops of talent, expertise, and better products.
A significant enough group of Web3 players have now discovered the value of inter-DAO collaboration and, as an ecosystem, we have now completed the first few inter-DAO research initiatives focused on DAO patterns and ‘best practices’ (e.g. Prime DAO’s D2D research, the Governauts Rewards Systems research initiative). We’re taking the next step to build on top of these initiatives and move from ad-hoc, waterfall-style research (requiring a lot of upfront planning and cat-herding) to ongoing and compounding, cyclical and iterative, inter-DAO R&D.
As such, RnDAO is designed to catalyse collaboration across DAO tooling projects, as a cross-DAO innovation community, focused on solutions for DAO operations and governance.
The innovation lab framework (how):
Many of the RnDAO founding team have started and operated innovation centres within Web2 and Web3. Our expertise spans design thinking, organisational science, human-centred design, Lean UX, and systems thinking.
RnDAO operates a continuous innovation feedback loop, compounding learnings and continuously refining our own process. We’re positioning ourselves at the cross-road of multiple research communities (DAOs, academia, self-management practitioners, etc). We combine and connect diverse expertise to provide meaningful solutions for DAO operations and help invent a humanistic, thriving Web3.
Concretely, at RnDAO, we:
- Identify shared challenges and bring together cross-diciplinary teams to produce in-depth research. E.g. previous projects on sub-DAOs practices and challenges, Web3 community health assessment, rewards & compensation, decentralised leadership, etc;
- Apply the learnings to incubate new tools and support existing projects to refine their product strategy. Including co-creating Sobol’s product strategy, enabling MeetWithWallet to pivot towards a more impactful solution, and incubating our home grown community health assessment tool. (Learn more about incubation here: RnDAO Incubation Value Proposition).
Additionally, we’ll seek to ‘drink our own champagne’ by being users of the tools and research we produce. We aim to succeed by role-modelling decentralised practices and leveraging inter-DAO collaboration.
Business Model and Financial Viability:
RnDAO has four synergistic business models:
- Research as a service: subscription or project-specific funding from DAO tooling projects interested in R&D outputs.
- Publics Goods Research: identifying challenges in the ecosystem and bringing coalitions of funding parters to grant-fund open source research.
- Venture Building: building research-informed tools that generate their own revenue stream and/or spin-off as independent entities (dropping tokens to RnDAO and its funding partners).
- Incubation: offering an “innovation space” (community as a service, team coaching, strategy facilitation, networks and partnerships) for early stage DAO tooling projects started outside of RnDAO.