Voltaire Update: Tales from SanchoNet

2024 will be the year the Cardano blockchain will undergo one of the most critical upgrades to date. This upgrade is all about the governance system of the blockchain. The Cardano blockchain will transition to an on-chain governance system that will put the decision-making power into the hands of the community. This upgrade will also complete the initial Cardano roadmap, which began with the Byron era and will conclude with the Voltaire era. If you need a refresher about the Voltaire era and on-chain governance, as well as the design specifications for on-chain governance described in CIP-1694, check out the Voltaire Report.

Before the upgrade, the community must test all the new governance features detailed in CIP-1694. This includes features like:

  • Registering as a Delegated Representative (DRep): DReps will vote on governance actions. Anybody will be able to register as a DRep to either represent themselves or others.
  • Establishing a Constitutional Committee (CC): Their goal is to ensure that the governance actions adhere to the yet-to-be-defined Cardano constitution.
  • Creating and voting on Governance Actions (GAs)

This is where we enter SanchoNet, a public Cardano governance testnet, to test those critical features. The implementation of the new governance features will take place in phases, and they are detailed as follows:

As of 9 January 2024, the governance feature rollout is between phases 4 and 5, with phase 5 nearly completed. The governance action to change protocol parameters is already available. It can be used by participants of SanchoNet, such as delegated DReps, CC, and regular test ada holders, to propose parameter changes.

On another important note, since 17 December 2023, SanchoNet has had a community-led constitutional committee of nine Cardano community members spearheaded by Mike Hornan from ABLE pool.

List of the known Constitutional Committee Members:

If you are eager to participate in SanchoNet and don’t want to set up a Cardano node or use the command-line interface (CLI), you can do so via the Governance Tool IOG is developing. Leveraging this tool, you can view governance actions, register as a DRep, vote on governance actions, and delegate your voting power to a DRep. Here is the link: https://sanchogov.tools/

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