Initia Governance Explained

Initia Governance Explained

Initia is a Layer 1 blockchain designed to facilitate the deployment of application-specific Layer 2 solutions, known as Minitias, through its innovative rollup framework.

As we are actively participating in the Initia testnet campaign, we decided to explain the network's governance process in detail. Here's a detailed breakdown of its governance structure.

Governance structure

  1. Governance power
    Governance on the Initia platform is based on the staking of INIT tokens. Stakers gain governance power proportionate to their total staked INIT, whether staked directly or as part of liquidity pool (LP) tokens. This ensures that governance power is reflective of the participants' commitment to the network.
  2. Whitelisting process
    For LP tokens to earn block rewards and participate in governance, they must be whitelisted. This involves submitting a proposal that details the LP token's reward weight and other criteria. The proposal is then voted on by the community.
  3. Voting mechanism
    Voting power is determined by the amount of INIT tokens in LP pairs at the time of a proposal snapshot. This mechanism prevents manipulation by ensuring that the value of INIT in the pairs determines voting power, not external assets.
  4. Shared security framework (OSS)
    The Omnitia Shared Security (OSS) framework ensures the security of the Initia network and its Minitias. The L1 validators handle fraud challenges on the L2, leveraging advanced tools like Celestia's data availability sampling to verify transactions efficiently.

Governance modules integration

The most important power that Initia brings to the table when it comes to governance is its diversity in governance modules. Initia can use governance modules besides those provided by the Cosmos SDK, given its integration capabilities with EVM (Ethereum Virtual Machine) and Optimistic Rollups.

  1. Cosmos SDK Governance

    Default governance:
     Initia, being built on the Cosmos SDK, naturally supports its native governance module. This includes proposals, voting, deposits, and tallying mechanisms.

    Extensions: Custom modules can be developed to extend the default governance functionalities, incorporating features unique to Initia’s needs.
  2. EVM-based governance

    Smart contracts:
     Initia can integrate EVM-based governance by deploying smart contracts that handle governance processes. These contracts can implement various governance models such as token-weighted voting, quadratic voting, or DAO (Decentralized Autonomous Organization) frameworks.

    Existing solutions: Popular EVM-based governance frameworks like Compound’s Governor Bravo or OpenZeppelin’s governance modules can be adapted to work within Initia’s ecosystem, allowing for flexible and decentralized governance structures.
  3. Optimistic rollup governance

    Rollup-specific governance:
     Optimistic rollups can implement their own governance mechanisms, which can be integrated into Initia’s Layer 2 solutions. These mechanisms typically involve fraud proofs and dispute resolution handled by the Layer 1 validators.

    Interoperability: Governance decisions made on the rollup level can be communicated and enforced on the Layer 1 through bridging mechanisms, ensuring that the governance structure remains cohesive across different layers.
  4. Custom and hybrid governance models

    Flexible Integration:
     Initia’s modular architecture allows for the integration of custom and hybrid governance models. This flexibility is crucial for adapting to the unique needs of various applications and developer preferences.

    Layered Governance: Initia can support governance models that operate at different layers (Layer 1 and Layer 2), enabling sophisticated and hierarchical decision-making processes.

Example implementations

Aragon: Aragon provides tools for creating DAOs and managing on-chain organizations. Its framework can be deployed on Initia to facilitate EVM-based governance, allowing users to create and manage decentralized organizations with customizable governance rules.

Compound Governor Bravo: This governance module, widely used in the Ethereum ecosystem, enables decentralized decision-making by allowing token holders to vote on proposals. By deploying it on Initia, the platform can leverage a battle-tested governance system familiar to many users and developers.

Snapshot: Snapshot is an off-chain governance tool that allows for gasless voting. It can be integrated with Initia to provide a lightweight governance solution where votes are cast off-chain and results are executed on-chain, reducing the cost and complexity of participation.


When integrating different governance modules, ensuring seamless interoperability between them is crucial. This involves managing cross-chain communication, data consistency, and synchronization of governance states. The governance needs of different applications can vary significantly. Providing customizable governance modules that can be tailored to specific use cases enhances flexibility and adoption. Ensuring the security of governance processes is paramount, especially when dealing with multi-layer architectures. This includes securing smart contracts, preventing governance attacks, and ensuring the integrity of cross-chain governance communications. Building for interoperability, customization, and security makes this technology very versatile and falls into the Cosmos ethos.

Initia’s ability to integrate with EVM and Optimistic Rollups allows it to leverage a wide range of governance modules beyond those provided by the Cosmos SDK. This flexibility enables the deployment of robust, decentralized governance frameworks tailored to the specific needs of various applications within the Initia ecosystem.

For more details, you can refer to Initia’s official site and additional resources like Simply Staking and TokenInsight.