Hey Zcash Fam! our team is working to analyze and showcase Zcash Grantees and ecosystem projects. We have applied for the ZCG and the community can find our application here. Additionally we have an ongoing post on the forum here.
Zcash Grants & Ecosystem Observer
Sharp | Grant3
Zcash Grants & Resources Database
The Grant3 team consists of 2 full-time contributors, 1 part-time contributor and 3 advisors.
The core Contributors are Sharp and Shikha. I will list their background and area of expertise
Sharp - Grants and Ecosystem Analytics expert
Founder of Grant3, Grant consultant and advisor for Grant programs for 2 years.
Has knowledge and expertise in tracking and analyzing Grant Programs- Currently tracking 95+ Grant Programs
For the first grant analytics, Sharp analyzed Optimism Grants that tracked 411 projects and 88M in grants
Sharp’s tracking and analysis of grants programs helps aspiring applicants in properly analyzing the grant program and avoid duplication, redundancy and help provide high-quality applications that ultimately help the grant teams
Sharp also helps startups with grant consulting (free of cost)
You can learn more about Sharp on his LinkedIn
Shikha: Research and Analysis associate
Has experience in organic and inorganic growth strategies for Web3 projects
Worked on 75+ web3 projects during the career span of 4+ years
For Grant3 Shikha helped with social media and online relationship management. She impressively grew the LinkedIn network and is currently expanding grant3’s presence on Twitter.
Shikha is also a part-time growth and strategy consultant.
She is also actively involved in DAOs and governance forums
The Zcash Grant Program is one the most public engagements of the Zcash Ecosystem. The ZCG provides community members an opportunity to contribute to the growth and development of the ecosystem. This also attracts some amazing teams, technologies and ideas. In this regard, the ZCG has committed $12M for supporting startups that help the Zcash Ecosystem.
While the grants are being given to talented individuals, there is a need of the data regarding grants and grantees to be easily accessible to the community.
Without easy access to the grantee data, the community is not able to discover and utilize the grantee products to the fullest. Community members cannot easily access the website or interface of the grantees just through the existing application or gallery. Thereby ZCG Grantees are also missing an easy opportunity to onboard Zcash Community members as their first users.
For aspiring applicants, there is no easy visibility where they can analyze past grantees, this creates a challenge where the applicants may be working on a project similar to an already funded grantee, which increases chances of rejection and wastes the efforts of applicants. We have seen this happen in multiple other grant programs, where due to lack of knowledge about overlap with the product of past grantees, the application was rejected. For example, one of the Arbitrum grant applications was rejected even after having high rubric scoring, the reason was prior approval of a similar project. The applicant could have changed their scope of deliverables to stay relevant and get grants without wasting the grant resources on an overlapping idea.
The Zcash Grants and Ecosystem observer will make the Grantee data public in an extremely user friendly interface. The database will also make it easy to filter and sort grantees based on various parameters, so any startup aiming to apply for the grants will be able to easily discover grantees in their domain, what products may be overlapping and how can the grantee make their application better. Additionally, a comprehensive knowledge page on each of the grantees will ensure that Zcash community members are able to use this data in multiple aspects - using grantee products, reading grantee application, visiting important links, checking socials, and more.
Grant3 will create and maintain a database of grantees with an easy-to-use UI. This will feature a dashboard on the Grants program which will be a graphical and intuitive version of the Grants program Google sheet dashboard. The initial version of dashboard is live here: https://zcash.grant3.co/
The grantee database will feature a full list of grantees, again in a highly user-friendly interface. This list will have advanced features to filter and sort the grantees, get multiple datapoints from single glance. The Grantee database (under construction) can be viewed here: Grantees
The individual grantee page will feature a comprehensive data on the particular grantee. Example Grantee page is Zcash
A resources hub will provide the community members a hub to see all important resources related to Zcash.
A blog section to give insights on Zcash ecosystem and grants. Example blog: ZCG: A Look at Q4 2023 Grantees
The primary stakeholders and target users for the project are
Zcash Community Members: Providing the community members an opportunity to
Easily discover and use grantee products
Get an easy understanding of the Grant program metrics
Understand the grantees funded recently (by month, tags, region)
Zcash Grant Applicants:
View the list of past grantees, be informed about the expectation on the quality of their application for the ZCG.
Understand the potential areas of overlap with products of Past grantees, how to provide an upgraded offering to stay relevant
The solution that is currently being worked on by us to enhance the grant effectiveness is in the form of a website.
The website tracks and organizes the grants data on Zcash ecosystem, currently there is no easy to use platform to see the grantee data.
The website will have a
Grants Dashboard: The dashboard will display all the key metrics associated with the Grants program. Currently, the dashboard is housed in a google sheet, the dashboard will provide a dedicated frontend for this sheet. The dashboard is ready and the community members can access it here: https://zcash.grant3.co/
Grantee Database: The grantee database will contain the list of all the projects that have been approved by the ZCG and ecosystem. This will provide an easily filterable and searchable interface that will let users easily find projects, and identify the startups. The Grantees database (under construction) can be viewed here Grantees
Grantee Information Page: Each grantee will have a dedicated page that will contain key details, descriptions and links for community members to understand more about the Grantees. Example page on Grantee: Zcash
ZCash Ecosystem Links: A collection of all the relevant analytics links about Zcash ecosystem that helps the community members in quantifying various aspects of the ecosystem.
ZCG & Zcash ecosystem blogs: Blogs by Grant3 team sharing meaningful insights on the ecosystem. A few articles are already live. You can check them out here Blogs
Technical Approach: Dive into the how of your project. Describe your approaches, components, workflows, methodology, etc. Bullet points and diagrams are appreciated!
You can find the diagrammatic representation of the site here
Dependencies: What external entities is your project dependent on? What involvement is required from ZF, ECC, and/or other external organizations? Who would have to incorporate your work in order for it to be usable?
The project is depended on the Grants Dashboard Google sheet that is maintained by the ZCG. Our project uses this sheet as the source of truth, this data is then used to further analyze the grantees and present it to the community.
Execution risks: What obstacles do you expect? What is most likely to go wrong? Which unknown factors could jeopardize success? Who would have to incorporate your work in order for it to be usable?
The Grants observer platform was primarily designed for DAOs and decentralized communities that do not have an easy access to the grantee data. Most of the time it is not possible to collaborate closely with DAO grant committees, with this in mind we created the project with minimal dependencies on any of the DAO processes. In this aspect there is no critical bottleneck that could derail or jeopardize the project as we scan for most of the grantee data from the Zcash forum and grants sheet.
But going through the forum means that most of the procedures are extremely manual. For example, the data analysis for each grantee is a manual task that must be done by a team member who is an expert in the field. So the only obstacle we see is the process to be time-consuming.
The project is independent in all aspects, so we are not blocked by any other party requiring to incorporate our work in order for this to be a success.
Unintended Consequences: What are the negative ramifications if your project is successful? Consider usability, stability, privacy, integrity, availability, decentralization, interoperability, maintainability, technical debt, requisite education, etc.
We do not see any unintended consequences for the Zcash community or any of the stakeholders from the implementation of this project. This project is meant to be a data aggregator and facilitator for the community.
Evaluation plan: What metrics for success will you share with the community once you’re done? In addition to quantitative metrics, what qualitative metrics will you commit to report?
Qualititive: Robustness of the grantee data, comprehensiveness of the Grantee database and individual grantee data
Quantitative: Completeness of the Grantee data, the number of Grantees analysed
Additonally, we will share our progress updates on the forum, You can find our current progress on this forum post on Zcash Forum
There is no requirement for a hardware/software budget. The team is not using any hardware/software specifically for one site.
Hosting budget (~$100)
Website infrastructure (Webflow $326 One time)
Zapier (Starter Plan $20/mo)
Online IDE and coding environments (Replit ~$22/mo)
The compensation is determined by the working commitment required by the two members of the Grant3 team spanning over a period of six months.
There are two members that will be working on the project on getting funding, currently, only one member is working in part time capacity on this project. Currently, Sharp is engaged to create the frontend of the Zcash grants observer.
Sharp ($80/hr): Website and platform lead
Estimated time 160 Hrs. Total $12800 over 6 months
Website design and Frontend development
Dashboard setup and Maintenance
Setting up coding systems and backend management
Analysis and recording of Grantees.
Shikha ($80/hr): Research and Social media lead
Total 140 hours over 6 months: $11200 total
Grantee analysis and data entry
Individual grantee research
Article and content strategy for Zcash ecosystem grants updates
Social media shoutouts and promotion content for Grantees
Our team already started working on the project back in December, to show our commitment to the community, first three milestones are already complete. We have also shared a part of our progress here of fourm
These milestones are
Milestone 1: Setting up and website, getting systems up and maintaining them.
Milestone 2: Creating Dashboard frontend for displaying Grant statistics data You can see the live dashboard here: https://zcash.grant3.co/
Milestone 3: Content creation: We write articles on Zcash ecosystem and grants, the startup funding will allow us to dive deeper to provide more meaningful insights to the community
The requisition of the startup funding also serves to make the project sustain at least 1 year of infrastructure and upkeep costs. Currently, the team is unable to commit to yearly infrastructure expenses as the project is being funded out of our pockets and hence we follow a monthly billing (since November). Monthly expenses while manageable, are costlier in the long term compared to yearly expenses.
Fully functional website with - Grantee list, individual grantee pages and analytics hub
Dedicated page for each grantee along with description and data
Grantee project specific links for easy access to project research for community members
Full coverage on All zcash Grantees (Past and Present)
Blogs on Zcash ecosystem and Grants on the Grant3 Platform.
Social media spotlight content for at least 30 Grantees (Grantee projects that are live)
The milestones were determined on the basis of two key factors
Initial work on Zcash grants: We conducted an initial analysis on the Zcash grants, additionally, we have started light work in this direction so we understand the depth of work required to see this project to completion
Past Experience: We have worked on an Optimism Grant program observer, andwe have estimates on thetimes and costs of the work and its scope.