Delegate Proposal - Ian Unsworth

Identity and background

  • What is the delegate’s identity and background?

Hey everyone, I’m Ian - I’m an active user and researcher in space. I previously worked as a protocol specialist at Binance’s US arm where I handled research for listings and our staking product. Nowadays, I mainly split my time between Ethereum, Solana, and the Cosmos ecosystem.

I like that these three ecosystems are all taking different approaches to blockchain networks, and I think the diversity of thought has helped shape my personal perspective and ideology a healthy amount.

Find me on X @ian_unsworth

  • Has the delegate historically contributed to the Jito Network?

Yes, in my previous role, I personally sought out the Jito team after seeing their dashboard highlighting how many failed liquidations, transactions, etc were happening on the network due to structural inefficiencies. It was clear that their client, jito-solana, was a net benefit for users and the network alike. We happily got them integrated with our staking providers while their client market share was around ~3%, pleased to now see it constituting around ~60%.

  • Has the delegate historically been involved in protocol governance?

Yes, I covered governance developments for the networks & protocols we supported in my previous role. I also briefly contributed to Stride, the largest LST provider in the Cosmos, where I spoke out against the idea to convert the entire STRD supply to ATOM in the forum. Since then, STRD is up ~500%, ATOM is up ~40%. I’ve also anonymously contributed to other various protocol’s governance processes.

  • Is the delegate committed to helping the Jito Network and Solana succeed? Explain.

Yes. In my opinion, their success is the same, one cannot win without the other. Solana takes a unique approach, and seems most serious about replacing our current digital rails as we know them today; whether financial or otherwise. It’s a great user experience, and on a transaction basis, I find myself using Solana more than any other network nowadays. I would love to help this trend continue and accelerate the growth.

Candidate views

  • How should JitoSOL validator delegation balance performance (yield) versus decentralization goals?

Realistically, these are interdependent goals, and I think both are achievable through a careful mixture. Decentralization has to be the endgame for any crypto network, otherwise, why are we here? Decentralization in terms of supporting more non-institutional operators, and encouraging an even geographical spread of operators would be ideal in the short term.

While accomplishing these decentralization goals may slightly impede on performance, it’s important to remember Jito still has a structural advantage that other Solana LSTs can’t mimic.

  • What should be the priorities for JTO liquidity mining and DAO token grants?

Both of these are essentially methods of distributing tokens to users. Both are important, but seldom can we point to examples where liquidity mining helped foster a community. Liquidity mining can help with partnership integrations; such as with money markets, dex liquidity, etc, but ideally Jito should be getting a 3:1 match for every $1 of JTO they provide for liquidity mining purposes.

In my opinion, it is likely we see jitoSOL adoption play out the same way we saw stETH adoption play out. Essentially, the majority of jitoSOL will end up on money markets, CDP stablecoin products, dexes, vault products, whales, and then perhaps begin to get exported outside of Solana due to its “moneyness”. Due to the structural advantage jitoSOL has over other Solana LSTs, it will just keep winning. Therefore, I think JTO emissions should be kept relatively minimal, and have careful consideration before handing them out.

Grants programs are a great method of distribution for JTO for those that are looking to contribute and improve the network. Of course, grants should be carefully reviewed by the appropriate technical or non-technical audiences to understand their impact. Additionally, those that contribute their time to the network by improving it are already “aligned” with its success, and may be better JTO governance participants (theoretically).

  • What are your goals for the DAO as a delegate?

My primary goal is to cultivate the right set of incentives that will not only enhance the growth of the network but also steer it towards autonomous governance. This involves a deep focus on establishing incentives that align with the network’s long-term viability and health. A significant part of my role is to ensure the network expands in terms of reach, functionality, and user engagement. The ultimate aim is to reach a stage where the protocol is self-governing, signifying a mature, decentralized system capable of operating effectively with minimal centralized control. This goal underscores the importance of fostering a sustainable ecosystem, one that thrives on efficient, transparent, and inclusive governance structures, paving the way for the network to sustain and govern itself independently.

Simply put, I want to create a robust enough system that will replace me.

Solana Delegation address: 4AQ7inBvCgrhfyTB36eJUbA3UuryX8J4fESMdyHRnkhU