Maybe a DAO is a whole which is greater than the sum of its parts. In that case, let's bring some attention to the most basic elements of a DAO: individual contributors. People contribute to DAOs for a variety of reasons, and expect a variety of things in return (a very interesting question in its own right!). So how well do contributors think the emergent phenomenon of the DAO is able to sustain itself while supporting its contributors' needs?

At ETHDenver 2022, we developed and deployed a short survey intended for all and all DAO contributors. We asked respondents to rate their experience with each DAO they contributed to on a scale of one to five, on five aspects:

  1. do you feel a sense of agency in the decision-making process?
  2. do you trust the decision-making process?
  3. does the DAO effectively accomplish its mission?
  4. do you feel wanted and/or needed by the DAO?
  5. does contributing to this DAO bring you a sense of fulfillment?
We then averaged each respondent's choices responses to obtain an overall "sentiment" value. In retrospect, we would also have loved to get contributors' thoughts on whether they felt fairly compensated for their time and effort. Let us know what other dimensions of individual involvement in DAOs you think should be investigated!

Over the course of the event, we collected 190 responses from 171 unique contributors about 112 unique DAOs. Overall DAO contributor sentiment (on a 1 to 5 scale) averaged at 4.01. Though most common overall sentiment value was a solid 5, the distribution spreads the full range of sentiment values. Just over half of respondents had a sentiment value at or below 4, and about 17% were at best ambivalent at or below a 3.

Overall sentiment distribution

We were curious to know if there were particular aspects of their experience for which DAO contributors were generally most satisfied. As it turns out, our survey respondents felt pretty similarly about each aspect we asked about. (Though this could mean we need a greater distinction between questions...)

Sentiment distribution by question

Of course this is a pretty small sample, taken non-randomly at an event full of people who cared enough to show up from across the world to a single physical location, so take these findings with a grain of salt.