What is governing Web3

What’s Governing Web3? Conference

Author Loren Dela Cruz
Date 7 November 2022

Leading researchers will come together at RMIT University on Wednesday 14 December for a public conference to advance knowledge on blockchain-enabled Web3 governance, present field-defining findings arising from current work, and provide policy-oriented insights and solutions.

Web3 has produced a wave of governance experimentation with consequences for how protocols evolve and whose interests they serve. Governance involves new organisational tools and processes such as Decentralised Autonomous Organisations (DAOs). It also occurs through the software and infrastructure choices of node operators who are unknown to each other, yet whose decisions influence the security and direction of blockchain protocols. These new capabilities can also create legal uncertainty for users.

During the conference, researchers will address the following questions:

  • What and who governs Web3? How do we make sense of the interactions of smart contracts and human decision-makers?
  • What have we learnt from Web3 governance experiments to date?
  • What is the legal and regulatory status of Web3? How can international efforts in DAO regulation frameworks and NFT legal standards benefit Australia?
  • What are the societal-level implications of institutional emergence in Web3?
  • What methods are required for a comprehensive empirical analysis of governance in decentralised autonomous organisations? How can we best work across academic disciplines to answer these questions?
  • What knowledge translation strategies can we use to help ensure that inclusive and ethical considerations are built into the automation of governance processes?

“With Web3, people are able to set rules that help them to coordinate more easily. However, developing code-based rules is just the start. We also need to consider the legibility of these systems to their human governors, and where they collide with other social, legal or political processes. This symposium brings together world-leading scholars and practitioners working on these issues,” said Prof Ellie Rennie, Conference Chair and Associate Investigator at the ARC Centre of Excellence for Automated Decision-Making and Society (ADM+S).

What’s Governing Web3? is presented by ADM+S, the Cooperation Through Code project— a Future Fellowship project funded by the Australian Research Council, the BlockchainGov project of the European Research Council (ERC), MetagovRMIT Blockchain Innovation Hub and the Digital Asia Hub.

Registration for the public conference is now open. For more information and to register, visit the event website.