DeSci and Public Goods - Our first session of PGSA

On 22nd March, we kick-started the Public Goods Student Association (PGSA) with a virtual seminar on DeSci and Public goods. The call began with introductions from the participants, which included students of the Public Goods Student Association and speakers interested in public goods - which included speakers from DeSci Labs, Gitcoin, LabDao, OpSci, VitaDAO, and Lobby3. The students’ familiarity with web3 ranged from being complete beginners to regular contributors in the space.

The group then discussed various topics related to DeSci, including the potential impact of blockchain technology on public goods provision, the need for more research and data on public goods, and the role of public goods in creating a more equitable society. It was evident from the concerns raised by various participants that onboarding people to DeSci is a major challenge currently and it needs better UX to onboard scientists and researchers. It was also noted that the current change is too slow and for DeSci to be successful it requires faster onboarding of the web2 scientists.

Throughout the discussion, participants shared their thoughts and experiences related to DeSci and provided examples of successful public goods provision in the DeSci context. The current bottleneck for DeSci movement was identified to be onboarding and funding which are both interlinked to each other. Molecule seemed to be the most familiar project in the DeSci space, but it was clear that there was a need to explain DeSci not just to the web2 community but also to the broader crypto community as well.

As the call progressed, participants brainstormed some potential next steps for the Public Goods Student Association and its members. These included developing partnerships with organizations working on public goods provision and organizing events and workshops focused on public goods. There were a few interesting ideas that came out during the discussion that the PGSA or relevant stakeholders might take up. One among which was the ‘Global DeSci Fellowship’ idea to fund PhDs and postdocs up to 10K for using some DeSci tools in their research, constraints such as running a DeSci node, publishing openly on Data DAO, etc. The source of such funding would be a potential Gitcoin round and other sponsors. The PGSA could be the community layer that can do operations around community building and liaising with other universities and clubs.

The Public Goods Student Association and its members expressed a strong interest in further exploring these topics and taking concrete steps to support exploring DeSci in further detail in their communities.

Call to action:

  • Get in touch with us if you are interested in bringing the DeSci public goods discussion to your university.
  • Tell us in the comments if you’d like to see the Global DeSci fellowship take shape and share your thoughts about it.