Overview of On-chain Governance

Overview of On-chain Governance

In many contemporary on-chain governed blockchain networks, the concept of shared power and decision-making is fundamental. These decentralized ecosystems operate under a community governance model, allowing every token holder to have a say in network upgrades and the evolution of its protocol.

The network's governance structure typically encompasses several key roles: the council and the general token holder population. Each of these roles contributes to the decision-making process, bringing balance to the governance model.

The Council, elected by token holders, typically consists of a smaller group of participants who are committed to the sustainability and future of the network. Council members are responsible for proposing referenda, vetoing dangerous or malicious proposals, and representing passive token holders.

Token holders, as members of the network, are part of its governance system. They vote on referenda using their tokens, propose changes to the network, and elect the council members.

A unique feature of such ecosystems is their adaptive quorum biasing, which adjusts the passing threshold of proposals based on turnout. This ensures a fair representation and participation in the system.

Furthermore, an integral part of these blockchain networks is their ability to upgrade and evolve over time without necessitating hard forks. Changes to the network protocol, like runtime upgrades, can be proposed, voted on, and enacted in a decentralized manner without interrupting network services.

In essence, these on-chain governed blockchain networks exemplify how decision-making power can be shared amongst all participants. The ethos of transparency, collective intelligence, and broad participation in these systems pave the way for future blockchain technologies.

Tangle Network Governance Guide

The governance system of Tangle Network is divided into two parts, the public referenda and the council. The public referenda allows any TNT token holder to propose and vote, given they provide a bond.

Public Referenda

Proposals can be made by any token holder. Others can agree with the proposal by seconding it and providing tokens equivalent to the original bond. The most seconded proposal during every launch period is moved to the public referenda table for active voting. Voters can lock their tokens for a longer duration to amplify their vote.

Detailed information on the governance system can be found here (opens in a new tab).

Important Parameters for Democracy Module

Here are some important parameters when voting using the Democracy module:

  • Launch Period: Frequency of new public referenda launches.
  • Voting Period: Frequency of referenda vote tallying.
  • Emergency Voting Period: The minimum voting period for a fast-tracked emergency referendum.
  • Minimum Deposit: The minimum amount needed as a deposit for a public referendum proposal.
  • Enactment Period: The minimum time period for locking funds and the period between a proposal being approved and enacted.
  • Cool off Period: The time period when a proposal can't be re-submitted after being vetoed.

These parameters may change based on governance. Refer to Network Parameters or the Node Runtime for the most authoritative reference.

Proposing an Action

To propose an action, you need to bond some tokens. The Polkadot Apps' "Democracy" tab allows you to submit a new proposal by entering the preimage hash of the proposal. After submitting your proposal, it appears in the "proposals" column. At this point, it is only visible and can be seconded. The preimage must be submitted to make the proposal actionable.

Seconding a Proposal

Seconding a proposal means you agree with the proposal and back it with a deposit equal to the original one. The most seconded proposal is tabled as a referendum to be voted on every launch period.

Voting on a Proposal

To vote on a referendum, navigate to the "Democracy" tab. Any active referendum will appear in the "referenda" column. Click "Vote" to cast a vote for the referendum. Locking your tokens for a longer duration can weigh your vote more strongly. The lock duration doesn't compound upon consecutive votes.

Delegate a Vote

If you're unable to keep up with and vote on upcoming referenda, you can delegate your vote to another account. The delegated tokens add to the vote the delegatee has made.

Undelegate a Vote

You can remove your delegation at any point in the future. Your tokens will be locked for a duration in accordance with the conviction you set at the beginning of the delegation.


Proxies vote on behalf of a stash account. Setting a proxy involves submitting a "setProxy" transaction from the "democracy" pallet. You can also remove a proxy or resign as a proxy using the "removeProxy" and "resignProxy" transactions respectively.