Themes, trends, highlights: the best of Akropolis Community Quest 3
Today, we want to share the highlights of Akropolis Community Quest 3. TL;DR — our community is awesome!
“Quest 1 was awesome, Quest 2 was epic, Quest 3 was legendary.”
Round 5, Question 2 — ‘What do you like about the project [Akropolis] the most?’
Most common answer: The team and people.
Answer no.2: The community and the Quest.
We feel honored and delighted about the engagement of the Akro community in the Quest, and Quest 3 showed once again how valuable it is to bring everyone together on hard challenges and open questions that widen our joint awareness of where the project is and should be going.
As in previous Quests, the challenges touched on a broad set of concepts that are crucial to the development of the Akropolis network. Starting with more general crypto questions, the rounds touched on DeFi, DAOs, Web3 and much more, and it was a pleasure to see the depth of thought the participants put into their responses, showing a strong value overlap with the project mission.
While the markets are still volatile and we never want to discourage healthy critique of the path we and the wider crypto world are taking, one of the most heartening aspects is that the optimistic voices about crypto’s future outstripped the skeptic beliefs by 2:1.
The enthusiasm also speaks from the many comments that celebrate the growth of DeFi. Many pointed out the benefits of greater access and the potential for a more equitable global financial system. Two comparisons capture the vision of the community particularly well.
“DeFi is to finance what the Internet was and is for communication, the next step in freeing humanity.”
“It will have the same impact as the open-sourced software that completely disrupted the field.”
On the same theme, participants were hopeful about the opportunities that DAOs can create for the bottom-up management of many different systems in society. Many supported further integration of DAOs into corporate structures with collaborative decision-making and cleverly designed incentives to ensure effective cooperation. Some even suggested replacing most or all government functions through collaboratively managed entities. While those are brave goals, we hope the enthusiasm means our goal of introducing DAOs as organizational structures for savings groups and AFOs is very achievable with this community on our side.
We also asked participants what Web3 meant to them, and as with the other topics, we found a strong overlap between our mission and the values in our community. The most common emphasis was on increased privacy and security, and the notion of taking back control — whether over data, identity or financial assets.
Across all answers and all questions, one topic crystallized as the most crucial advantage of the decentralized approach that Akro and DeFi represent: transparency. In the context of the Akropolis network, three key benefits of transparency stand out: better governance, the sustainability of collective intelligence, and the attraction it holds for many of the existing collaborative informal economy organizations to join the network.
“The decentralized rules provide convenience, simplicity, and transparency for financial management.”
The most fascinating round of responses emerged from the challenge to tell a story about the informal economy in the participants’ home country. From Russia, Romania, Vietnam, India, the Netherlands and many more nations all over the world, our community members provided rich descriptions of a vast variety of informal job settings, all with their issues of illegality, lack of state services or simply convenience and local support.
Most stories concerned small entrepreneurs or personal service providers from small markets, construction and agriculture or domestic workers. Tales of immigrants seeking a new and better life and resorting to hard work in the informal economy also abound. It is inspiring to hear all these stories and think about the possibility of enabling better access to financial systems and pensions solutions that the current global financial system entirely ignores.
“INS Ecosystem (now Insolar), November 2017. I was looking for pools to entice to enter our project with a large investment, with a bonus. Met an African guy who said he and his group of investors were interested, he said he was going to advertise it to everyone and hold a meeting soon. I was curious — so I asked him, what he meant by that, and he said he was going to announce it on the RADIO…”
“One example of informal economy I am actually part of but wasn’t thinking about […] until now is the residential complex I live in. There are about 5000 people living here. We have a couple of Facebook groups for residents only and we exchange both products and services. I just finished eating a delicious tomato salad as we speak. :) People sell from vegetables to clothes, cleaning and beauty services. Fairs are also organized periodically. The only thing missing is using a cryptocurrency, as we still use fiat.”
Building on all this hope and excitement, the Quest responses also offered a lot of valuable feedback to Akropolis for the future design of its network.
Firstly, people raised more foundational concerns about the importance of thinking deeply about the design of DAO governance systems, ensuring that transparency is built into the structures as much as possible, as it holds so much benefit in ensuring fair, sustainable collective decision-making.
Secondly, they also emphasized the need to optimize the technical infrastructure, ensuring a combination of privacy, security, and speed in ways that the current Ethereum-based DeFi world is not yet able to support. Projects commonly pointed out as crucial for progress for a better web3.0 include Polkadot and ChainX.
Potentially the most crucial theme to emerge from the responses is usability and spreading awareness. To succeed, Akropolis will rely on growing a large community of users who can take advantage of the new financial reality. Two perspectives stand out that show the challenges that lie ahead.
“DeFi applications can especially be useful in countries in development but these countries tend to be dominated by the greed of power, manipulation of the masses and even terror, and new transparent applications will not go in the same direction of leaders in charge of these issues. Everything can be made to make people scared about using such solutions for reasons that are not reasonable.”
“The imagination of people is far too limited and applications fail to retain users meaningfully.”
Although the many responses on the previous questions make us hopeful that our core community’s imagination is strong and far-reaching, the focus on growing awareness is always good to keep in mind. In the end, that’s why the Quest is so useful and important!
We thank our amazing community for all the insightful responses and hope that everyone had as much fun and took as much value from these exercises as we did. We look forward to the next Quests and growing the network together.