Radworks Governor Upgrade

  • Project Name: Radworks Governor Upgradge
  • Team Name: ScopeLift
  • Payment Address: scopelift.eth
  • Category: Core Infrastructure


Project Overview

ScopeLift will upgrade the Radworks’ Governor contract. Radworks’ onchain governance is based on Compound’s “Governor Alpha” contracts. Compound itself moved on from these contracts years ago, as have most major DAOs. Today, the best practice is to use the OpenZeppelin implementation of the Governor Bravo contracts.

Outdated governance contracts come with a number of specific risks and downsides:

  • The DAO’s treasury is susceptible to a multi-block MEV attack due to a 1 block voting delay
  • The DAO treasury cannot hold ETH directly in the timelock, and any ETH sent directly to the timelock would be stuck
  • The DAO is limited to proposals that execute 10 onchain actions at a time
  • The DAO’s governance parameters cannot be updated by the DAO
  • The contracts are incompatible with tooling providers, who increasingly eschew support for Governor Alpha

Upgrading to a more modern Governor will solve theses problems. For a more detailed explanation of the advantages of bravo-compatible Governors, see this post on the subject from Tally.

Note: This proposal is contingent on the DAO signaling its desire to upgrade its Governor contract via Social Proposal.


Team members

Team Lead: Ben DiFrancesco
Additional Team Members:

  • Ed Mazurek
  • John Feras
  • Gary Ghayrat
  • Alex Keating


Legal Structure

  • Registered Address: [REDACTED]
  • Registered Legal Entity: ScopeLift

Team’s experience

ScopeLift is a small team of expert, full stack EVM devs. We’ve had the pleasure of working with many great projects in the space, including Uniswap, Optimism, Gitcoin, Endaoment, Llama, PoolTogether, Yield, Cozy, Obol, Railgun and others.

Smart contracts we’ve written have processed or custodied hundreds of millions of dollars. We have our own project called Umbra, a stealth address system.

ScopeLift has extensive experience in the areas of DAO Governance engineering. Most relevantly, we’ve lead Governor upgrades for Gitcoin and PoolTogether. We completed these upgrades without incident, protecting the treasuries and protocols of these DAOs collectively worth many 10’s of millions of dollars.

ScopeLift has also lead development and maintenance of Uniswap’s Seatbelt, an automated Governance security tool.

Finally, ScopeLift has developed an extension to the Governor called Flexible Voting. The extension has been adopted by Gitcoin, PoolTogether, and Frax Finance. It enables novel integrations and experimentation around DAO Governance Voting. ScopeLift has built out some of these usecases, such as Governance Voting while deposited in Aave and Compound, voting while bridged to L2, and more.

Team Code Repos

Team GitHub Profiles

Team LinkedIn Profiles

Project Description

ScopeLift is applying for this grant because DAO Governance engineering is one of our areas of expertise. By specializing in this area, we can provide a clear win-win proposition for the DAO. We execute on Governance engineering and ensure these sensitive tasks are completed without incident. At the same time, we free critical DAO developer resources to focus on the core project, rather than ancillary Governance concerns.

Upgrading the DAO’s Governance contracts helps it avoid security risks and keeps it in line with current best practices, as detailed above. In particular, by upgrading the Governor contract—while leaving the existing Timelock in place—we resolve the biggest issues that come from outdated contracts with minimal risk and disruption for the DAO.


  • Total Estimated Duration: 8-10 weeks
  • Full-time equivalent (FTE): 18-32 days
  • Total Costs: $50,000

The Governor upgrade will have three main milestones:

  1. Development, Testing, and Simulation
  2. Deployment and Proposal
  3. DAO Vote and Upgrade Execution

Upgrading the Governor is a sensitive task that must be done carefully. If executed incorrectly, the upgrade could cause issues for the DAO. In the worst case, a botched Governor upgrade could result in locked treasury funds or the inability to update protocol parameters.

To ensure the upgrade will go smoothly, with no impact to the DAO or its members and users, ScopeLift will take extreme care in the development and testing of the upgrade. No corners can or will be cut in the upgrade process.

The first milestone is therefore where most of our time will be spent. Below is a summary of each milestone.

Milestone 1: Development, Testing and Simulation

  • Estimated Duration: 4-6 weeks
  • FTE: 14-28 days
  • Costs: $40,000
Number Deliverable Specification
1. Governor Assembly Putting together the actual Governor contract using OpenZepplin’s implementation of Governor Bravo.
2. Deploy & Proposal Scripts Foundry scripts that will be used to deploy the Governor and put the upgrade proposal onchain.
3. Testing & Simulation Writing and running hundreds of fuzz tests to simulate the upgrade and exercise the new Governor to ensure it will function after the upgrade.

After initial requirements gathering with appropriate DAO stakeholders, we will assemble the new Governor. It will be built using either OpenZeppelin’s widely used, audited, and battle tested implementation of Governor Bravo.

We will then write a large suite of tests and simulations to ensure the upgrade will be successful, and that all DAO operations will be able to proceed normally after it is completed. Based on our previous experience with Gitcoin and PoolTogether, we expect this test suite will include hundreds of tests and thousands of lines of code.

These tests simulate the upgrade to the new Governor, from deployment, proposal, Governance vote, and future votes by the DAO. The tests run on a “forked” state from mainnet to simulate the closest possible production state. They exercise all scenarios before and after the upgrade, and ensure governance will still function properly after it is completed.

We will also write scripts for deploying the new Governor and for submitting a proposal for the upgrade to the existing Governor. The scripts will be exercised by the tests.

All tests and simulations are specific to Radworks. They exercise the actual code that is live on mainnet in a simulated environment. They will ensure the upgraded Governor can manage the DAO treasury and execute its role within the DAO, including but not limited to modifying parameters of treasury-governed contracts, e.g. Drips.

These tests will be written as fuzz tests and invariant tests, meaning they will take random arbitrary inputs rather than hardcoded parameters. We will execute millions of scenarios through these tests before proceeding.

Milestone 2: Deployment and Proposal

  • Estimated Duration: 3 weeks (includes offchain Governance cycle)
  • FTE: 2 days
  • Costs: $5,000
Number Deliverable Specification
1. Candidate Governor Candidate Governor contract deployed onchain
2. Candidate Governor testing Tests updated to run against the actual Governor code onchain

When the upgraded Governor contracts have been rigorously tested as described above, we will deploy a candidate Governor contract to the Ethereum mainnet. We will then update our tests to execute again against the candidate Governor to ensure there were no errors introduced in deployment.

Afterwards, we will submit a proposal to go through the DAO’s governance process. This includes the online discussion, offchain vote, and finally onchain vote that is part of the DAO’s governance cycle.

Milestone 3: DAO Vote and Upgrade Execution

  • Estimated Duration: 3-5 days (includes onchain Governance voting)
  • FTE: 2 days
  • Costs: $5,000
Number Deliverable Specification
1. Onchain Proposal The proposal to upgrade the Governor is put onchain by a DAO delegate with. ScopeLift’s assistance
2. Proposal Tests Tests updated to run against the actual proposal which is now onchain
3. DAO Vote DAO members vote and upgrade executes if approved!

If the social signaling vote is successful, ScopeLift will work with a DAO delegate who has sufficient voting weight to submit a proposal for the upgrade onchain. When the proposal is live, we will again update the test suite against the proposal data now onchain. This will ensure, once again, that no errors were introduced in the proposal process. We will also patch Seatbelt to run against Radworks’ Alpha Governor and produce a safety report for the upgrade.

Once the proposal is live onchain, the DAO will be able to vote for or against its execution. We will monitor the proposal vote and coordinate with appropriate tooling providers, such as Tally, to ensure the upgrade is reflected immediately after it passes. After successful execution, the DAO will be able to proceed with its governance of the treasury and protocol as normal.

Future Plans

Upgrading the DAO’s Governor is a one time task with a well defined scope. Once the upgrade has successfully executed, the work is effectively complete. That said, ScopeLift is deeply involved with DAO governance engineering, and eager to help Radworks in the future with any such needs.

Additional Information

ScopeLift was referred to Radworks by the team at Tally, and directed toward applying for a grant by Shelby Steidl.


Following up with some additional context regarding this grant application.

  1. Here is the social proposal mentioned in the application: [Discussion][RGP-17] - Upgrade Governance Contracts from Compound Alpha to Compound Bravo
  2. I should also mention we are only looking to fund the first (and biggest) milestone with the grant money being requested. So our actual funding request from the grant is $40K, under the condition that the remaining $10K will be funded in $RAD from the DAO treasury as part of the same proposal that will execute the upgrade.

Thanks a bunch for this @bendi

This sounds like a great initiative and solid technical solution for it.

Non-blocking question:
Can you please provide some links to sample output of the tests you run?
I’m assuming they look something like a combination of unit tests + simulations.
So I’m just curious to look into how to interpret the output there.
I perused some of the repos, but didn’t know enough about the tooling to know if/where it exists.

I’ll give others until early/mid next week to review before we start a transaction.


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Hey @bordumb, the tests and simulations are implemented using the Foundry development framework. They’re implemented as “fuzz tests”, meaning they run with randomized parameters to look for any edge case failures. At each phase, we run a big batch of those tests. But during development, we are also constantly running small batches of those tests. You can see an example of the output from our CI for the PoolTogether upgrade, for example.

Additionally, we do a one-time patch of the Seatbelt tool we helped Uniswap develop to run a check of the upgrade proposal and generate a report. You can see the PoolTogether example here:

Let me know if you have any questions about any of this. Happy to expand further!

Hi @bordumb, just following up to see if anything else is needed from me regarding this proposal. Thanks!

@bendi thanks for following up

My understanding is that we will pay the initial 40,000 in USDC via Drips
The remaining 10,000 will be paid out in RAD

We are in the process of transferring 200,000+ USDC to our Drips account.
This is to prepare us for several grants starting in the next few weeks.
I will keep you updated on this over the next week (hopefully soon!)

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Just for clarification here, the RAD would be paid out from the treasury by including it in the final executable proposal to execute the contracts.

So milestone 2&3 (total 10,000) would be paid in RAD at the final execution of the contracts.

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Hey @bordumb, yes, this is correct, as is @shelb_ee’s clarification: the last 10K will be paid in RAD and will be sent as part of the upgrade protocol execution. Thanks, will be great to move forward!

:sparkles:October Snapshot Poll Results​:sparkles:

The proposal to gain consensus around upgrading the governance contracts has PASSED :white_check_mark: with 4.5M RAD in support of the proposal. See final results here: Snapshot

The passing of this proposal signals the Grants Committee that the community approved this work outlined in Scopelift’s grant application above and can start being funded. The Scopelift team will start preparing and testing the contract upgrade. Once their work is complete, an Executable Proposal will hit the forum to review, confirm and implement the new contracts. The proposal authors expect this happen within Q1 of 2024.

Thanks @shelb_ee for the note on that proposal passing

@bendi we’ll start a vote using our Gnosis Safe to start a Drips Stream of 40,000 USDC to the wallet address you posted

We will configure it as follows:

  • 40,000 USDC
  • Start streaming from early next week
  • End streaming 5 weeks from the start date (just picking this as it’s in between the 4-6 weeks you estimated)

Just to be on the safe side, I will schedule this Stream to start early next week. This will allow us to make sure that we get all the votes needed before the Stream is scheduled.

Given the vote is essentially a rubber stamp on the already passed proposal, this should hopefully be very soon.

I’ll post back here once that’s all done. My best guess is in the next 24-48 hours, but sometimes voting takes longer depending on availability.

Thanks a bunch for this!


Thanks @bordumb, sounds great! We’re excited the proposal passed and eager to get started on the work.

Thanks @bendi

I sent you an email to confirm the wallet address. Please see that.

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Hey @bordumb! Is there any update here?

Hey @shelb_ee, yes @bordumb and I have been in contact and the Drips stream has been started. As of this week, ScopeLift has started on the work for the upgrade!

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That’s great news!!

I have another question regarding feedback - you mentioned in the Proposal Review Call that the Scopelift team would like to get the eyes of some of the Radicle & Drips devs on your work at some point. How, when & where do you imagine this happening?

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The best time would probably be after the engineering work is complete and we’ve deployed a candidate Governor, but before we’ve actually put a proposal on chain. This gives the most complete picture for would-be reviewers. We’re probably 2-4 weeks out from that point, depending on how smoothly things go.

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Great! Please let us know when the times comes and I can help spread the word around to the dev teams.

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