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How to submit a DAO proposal


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In this how-to, you'll learn how to submit an Arbitrum Improvement Proposal (AIP) to the Arbitrum DAO. Familiarity with Arbitrum, DAOs, and Ethereum is expected. Otherwise, this how-to makes no assumptions about your experience with governance protocols.


To submit a temperature check using a Snapshot poll, you must have an Ethereum wallet address that represents at least 0.01% of votable tokens1; to submit a proposal on-chain using Tally, you must have an Ethereum wallet address that represents at least 1,000,000 tokens (about 0.1% of votable tokens).

If you don't have enough voting power, consider delegating your votes to a delegate who can create a proposal on your behalf2.

Proposal types

There are two types of AIPs: Constitutional and non-Constitutional:

  • Constitutional AIPs are those that modify the text or procedures of the Constitution or AIP-1, install or modify software on any chain, or take any action that requires "chain owner" permission on any chain.
  • Non-Constitutional AIPs are all other AIPs, such as those that request funds/grants or provide general guidelines or information to the community.

See Constitution for further details.

Proposal structure

The Constitution of the Arbitrum DAO encourages proposers to include the following sections within Arbitrum Improvement Proposals:

  • Abstract - Two or three sentences that summarize the AIP.
  • Motivation - A statement on why the Arbitrum community should implement the AIP.
  • Rationale - An explanation of how the AIP aligns with the Arbitrum community's mission and guiding values.
  • Key Terms - Definitions of any terms within the proposal that are unique to the proposal, new to the Arbitrum community, and/or industry-specific. This section is optional, but recommended.
  • Specifications - A detailed breakdown of the platforms and technologies that will be used. This is where you can elaborate on the "why" of your design decisions. You can also use this section to describe alternate designs that were considered and related work, e.g. how similar specifications have been successfully (or unsuccessfully) implemented in other chains or languages.
  • Steps to Implement - The steps to implement the AIP, including associated costs, manpower, and other resources for each step where applicable. AIPs that involve transactions with third parties (such as grants) will need to ensure that applicable legal documentation and procedures are also included.
  • Timeline - Relevant timing details, including but not limited to start date, milestones, and completion dates.
  • Overall Cost - The total cost to implement the AIP. The overall cost section should include a breakdown of the total cost of the AIP, including any associated costs for each step where applicable. Consider both fixed costs and recurring costs.

Sometimes, AIPs aren't passed on the first try. If an AIP is not passed, the proposer may resubmit the AIP after addressing the concerns of the community. The proposer should include the following additional sections in the resubmitted AIP:

  • A link to the previous AIP - The link to the previous AIP should be included in the resubmitted AIP.
  • Reasons why the AIP was not passed - The reasons why the AIP was not passed should be included in the resubmitted AIP.
  • Changes made to the AIP - The changes made to the AIP should be included to address the concerns raised during the previous AIP submission.
  • Additional information - More detailed intentions, specifics and implication details can help the community understand the revised AIP, increasing the chances of it being passed.

Pre-proposal development

Proposals that require code changes should include the code that will be executed when the proposal is passed. This code should handle the data structures, logic, executable data, and execution of the proposal. Refer to Governance Proposal Lifecycle: Example for an example.

Step 1: Conduct a formal temperature check with a Snapshot poll

The DAO governance forum facilitates discussions about Arbitrum DAO and governance proposals that are submitted by eligible token delegates. To submit your proposal:

  1. Go to the DAO governance forum.
  2. Create a new post with your proposal using the template located here. You can add additional fields to this template to provide more context for your proposal if you'd like.
  3. Whenever you're ready, navigate to Snapshot to create a poll that will gauge the community's interest in your proposal.
    1. Connect your wallet.
    2. Open the Arbitrum DAO Snapshot space if it isn't already open.
    3. Create a poll that points to your forum post. The poll should run for one week and should be decided by a simple majority.
    4. Navigate back to your forum post and share the link to your Snapshot poll with the community.
  4. Allow at least one week for discussion and debate. Iterate on your proposal based on feedback from the community.

If your proposal doesn't pass the temperature check, you shouldn't submit it for an on-chain vote. Instead, head back to your forum post and engage with the community to address any concerns that they have.

If your proposal passes the temperature check, then you can move to the second and final step: an on-chain vote facilitated by Tally. Ensure that you've incorporated feedback brought up during relevant forum discussions and temperature checks before proceeding.

Step 2: Submit your on-chain proposal using Tally

If your wallet can represent at least 1,000,000 tokens (about 0.1% of votable $ARB tokens), you can create an on-chain proposal using Tally.

To submit your proposal on Tally:

  1. Log in to Tally using the wallet that represents the $ARB tokens.
  2. Navigate to the "explore DAOs" section or click on "My DAOs" within your Tally profile and select Arbitrum DAO's page.
  3. Select "Create new proposal"
  4. Choose which governor you are targeting:
  5. Give the proposal a name and description (preview image is optional). Ensure that you’re submitting the correct type of proposal to the right DAO page in Tally.
  6. Add proposal actions to be executed if passed. For example, "transfer n ETH to 0x address".
  7. Preview your proposal and either save as a draft or submit on-chain.

A proposal passes if two conditions are met:

  1. More votes are cast in favor than against
  2. The total number of votes cast in favor is at least the following percentage of the votable tokens:
    1. 5%, for a Constitutional AIP
    2. 3%, for a non-Constitutional AIP

If the proposal passes, congratulations! After a delay, the proposal’s actions will be executed on-chain3.

If the proposal doesn’t pass, but there's interest in improving and resubmitting it, refer to How to resubmit your proposal.

This protocol is in its early days and will likely evolve in response to your feedback. If you have any questions or concerns, visit the Arbitrum DAO governance forum or Discord.

Welcome to the future of governance!

Important notes

  1. The Security Council has the power to execute emergency actions and non-emergency actions, as delegated to it by the Constitution. These are unlike traditional AIPs in that they can be approved by the Security Council without going through the above process. See the Security Council page for more information.
  2. The threshold of support required for a proposal to pass can vary depending on the type of proposal and the quorum requirements specified in the Constitution.
  3. You can delegate your voting power2 to another address whether or not you have enough tokens to submit on-chain proposals. If you hold any $ARB tokens whatsoever, you can participate in Arbitrum DAO's governance.

  1. When we say "an Ethereum wallet address that represents at least 0.01% of votable tokens", we mean that your address must be able to vote at least 0.01% of votable tokens. This voting power can be acquired by receiving delegated votes from other $ARB token holders who have decided to delegate their voting power to you or that you have delegated to yourself.
  2. Learn how to delegate your votes by visiting How to delegate your voting power.
  3. Refer to The Constitution of the Arbitrum DAO for additional details and conditions.