Grant Proposal: UniGraph Challenge: Fostering Decentralized Innovations Across Universities

Grant ID: 86881qgcq

Summary:

“ UniGraph Challenge: Fostering Decentralized Innovations Across Universities” is designed to harness the collective creativity and technical prowess of students, developers, and blockchain enthusiasts. By organizing a series of ideathons followed by an exclusive productathon, the initiative aims to spotlight and develop groundbreaking applications leveraging The Graph’s decentralized protocol.

Participants from five select universities will embark on a journey to conceptualize and design innovative solutions that utilize The Graph’s technology for querying blockchain data. These ideathons will serve as a platform for brainstorming and preliminary concept development, encouraging a wide array of ideas that showcase the potential of decentralized data access and analysis.

The most promising projects from each University ideathon will then progress to the productathon stage. Here, finalists will have the opportunity to refine their ideas into prototypes, guided by expertise from leaders within the blockchain space. This phase emphasizes practical application, with a focus on creating scalable, impactful solutions that can be integrated into the broader blockchain ecosystem.

“UniGraph Challenge” aims to create a vibrant community of innovators committed to exploring the possibilities of The Graph’s technology. This project not only seeks to educate and inspire participants about the potential of decentralized technologies but also to foster a culture of innovation that extends beyond universities into the global blockchain industry.

I have read and agree to the privacy policy:
true

Describe what your project does or is aiming to do in 50 characters or less:
Empower students to innovate in blockchain

How far along are you?:
At planning stage, securing grants and partnerships.

Why did you pick this idea to work on? Do you have domain expertise in this area? How do you know people need what you’re making?:
Building on our robust experience in fostering the blockchain ecosystem in Kenya, our team has successfully hosted an array of events aimed at deepening blockchain understanding and facilitating hands-on experience. These include meetups, workshops, hackathons, and ideathons centered on leading blockchain technologies such as Solana, TON Blockchain, Arbitrum, Flow Blockchain, and Gnosis. These initiatives have significantly contributed to nurturing a community of blockchain enthusiasts, developers, and innovators, laying a solid foundation for the adoption and advancement of blockchain technology within the region.

Our choice to focus on The Graph stems from its pivotal role in enhancing decentralized data accessibility, a crucial component for the next wave of blockchain innovations. Through our engagement with the local tech community and academic institutions, we’ve identified a palpable enthusiasm for blockchain technology among students and developers. However, there’s a clear need for more platforms that offer practical, hands-on experience with real-world blockchain applications.

This project is our response to that need. By organizing ideathons and a productathon specifically around The Graph’s technology, we aim to empower participants with the tools and knowledge to build impactful decentralized solutions.

What’s new about what you’re making? What substitutes do people resort to because it doesn’t exist yet (or they don’t know about it)?:
What’s New?

Focused Use of The Graph: It’s the first of its kind in Kenya to emphasize The Graph technology, enabling participants to explore and utilize advanced decentralized data querying and manipulation.

Academic and Community Synergy: By targeting universities, the challenge fosters a unique synergy between academic learning and community-driven innovation, encouraging the development of solutions that are both intellectually stimulating and practically viable.

Local and Global Impact: Projects developed through this challenge are designed to address local challenges with the potential for global application, filling a critical gap in current blockchain innovation efforts.

Current Substitutes and Their Limitations:

General Blockchain Workshops and Courses: While beneficial for foundational learning, these often lack a focus on specific technologies like The Graph or real-world application, leaving a gap between knowledge and practice.

Online Forums and Global Hackathons: These platforms, although rich in resources, can sometimes overlook the unique context and challenges faced by Kenyan developers and innovators. They may also lack the communal and collaborative spirit of localized events.

Self-Learning Through Online Resources: Self-directed learning through online courses and tutorials is a common route but lacks interactive, community-driven learning experiences and mentorship opportunities specific to The Graph technology.

The “UniGraph Challenge” is set to revolutionize how blockchain technology, particularly The Graph, is taught and applied in Kenya, providing a structured yet innovative platform that goes beyond the limitations of current substitutes. By doing so, it aims to empower a new generation of developers and entrepreneurs to create decentralized applications that are both impactful and relevant on a global scale.

What’s your vision for how your project will impact The Graph and/or web3?:
The vision of the “UniGraph Challenge” is to catalyze a significant transformation in the blockchain ecosystem by democratizing access to advanced blockchain technologies, specifically The Graph, within the Kenyan academic community and beyond. We aim to nurture a new generation of innovators who are not only proficient in utilizing The Graph for decentralized data querying but are also committed to solving real-world challenges through blockchain technology. Here’s how we foresee the project impacting The Graph and the broader web3 space:

Empowering Innovators with Cutting-edge Tools
By focusing on The Graph, the challenge intends to equip participants with the knowledge and skills to harness powerful decentralized data querying capabilities. This will enable the creation of more efficient, scalable, and innovative applications, expanding the utility and adoption of The Graph within the web3 ecosystem.

Fostering a Vibrant Community of Developers
The “UniGraph Challenge” aims to build a community of blockchain enthusiasts, developers, and scholars who are passionate about decentralized technology and its potential for societal impact. This community will serve as a dynamic force for innovation, collaboration, and advocacy for The Graph and web3 technologies, contributing to a more robust and diverse ecosystem.

Bridging the Gap Between Academic Research and Industry Needs
The project seeks to bridge the often-cited gap between academic research and practical industry applications. By encouraging the development of projects that address both theoretical concerns and practical solutions, the “UniGraph Challenge” will facilitate a richer exchange of ideas and technologies between the academic and entrepreneurial sectors of the blockchain space.

Catalyzing Local and Global Solutions
Through targeted ideathons and the productathon, we anticipate the emergence of innovative solutions that address local Kenyan challenges while being scalable to global contexts. This dual impact will showcase the versatility of The Graph’s technology and its relevance to various sectors, encouraging wider adoption and exploration across the web3 space.

Advancing the Decentralized Web
Ultimately, our vision is for the “UniGraph Challenge” to contribute significantly to the advancement of the decentralized web. By empowering participants with the tools and knowledge to build on The Graph, we’re fostering an environment where decentralized applications become more accessible, efficient, and integrated into everyday solutions, driving forward the vision of a truly decentralized internet.

In essence, the “UniGraph Challenge” aspires to be a cornerstone initiative that not only promotes technological innovation but also supports the growth of a sustainable and inclusive web3 ecosystem, grounded in the principles of decentralization, community engagement, and open collaboration.

How will you measure success?:

Participant Engagement and Satisfaction

Number of Participants: Tracking the total number of registrants and active participants throughout the ideathons and productathon will provide a clear indicator of the initiative’s reach and appeal.

Feedback Surveys: Post-event surveys will assess participant satisfaction, learning outcomes, and the overall experience, offering insights into the effectiveness of the workshops, mentorship, and resources provided.

Quality and Innovation of Projects

Number of Projects Submitted: A key quantitative measure will be the number of projects developed and submitted, indicating the level of active engagement and creativity spurred by the challenge.

Innovation and Impact: An expert panel will evaluate projects based on criteria such as innovation, technical implementation, and potential impact on the blockchain ecosystem and beyond. This qualitative assessment will highlight the challenge’s effectiveness in fostering meaningful solutions.

Community Building and Collaboration

Growth of the Blockchain Community: Success will also be measured by the increase in membership and activity within related community groups, forums, and social media channels, reflecting the challenge’s role in fostering a vibrant blockchain community.

Collaborations Formed: The number and quality of collaborations between participants, universities, and industry partners will indicate the challenge’s success in creating a collaborative ecosystem conducive to innovation.

Adoption and Integration of The Graph Technology

Adoption Metrics: Tracking the use of The Graph’s technology in projects developed during the challenge and its continued use in subsequent applications will measure the initiative’s effectiveness in promoting The Graph.

Contributions to The Graph and Web3 Ecosystem: Success will also be reflected in any contributions to The Graph’s open-source community or the broader web3 ecosystem, including tool development, documentation, and community support initiatives.

Long-term Impact

Follow-up Success Stories: The long-term success of the challenge will be assessed through follow-up stories showcasing how projects have evolved, including further development, adoption, or contribution to solving real-world problems.

Career Advancement: Tracking participants’ progress in blockchain careers or entrepreneurship will indicate the challenge’s impact on individual professional growth and contribution to the blockchain industry.

What milestones will you achieve in the coming weeks/months, with or without the grant?:
Our roadmap for the “UniGraph Challenge” outlines a series of key milestones we aim to achieve in the coming weeks and months. These milestones are structured to ensure the initiative’s progress, regardless of immediate grant support, demonstrating our commitment to fostering blockchain innovation and education within the Kenyan academic community.

Short-Term Milestones (1 Month)

  1. Community Engagement and Awareness: Launch a comprehensive marketing campaign to raise awareness about the challenge, targeting universities, tech communities, and social media platforms.
  2. Partnership Development: Finalize partnerships with universities, tech hubs, and industry experts to secure venues, mentorship, and resources for the challenge.
  3. Curriculum and Resource Preparation: Develop educational materials and workshops tailored to introducing The Graph technology and blockchain fundamentals, ensuring participants are well-prepared.

Long-Term Milestones (2 Months)

  1. Productathon Execution: Conduct the productathon, where finalists will develop their prototypes with intensive mentorship and technical support, culminating in a demo day to showcase their solutions.
  2. Community and Network Expansion: Leverage the challenge’s momentum to establish a sustainable community of blockchain enthusiasts, developers, and scholars, encouraging ongoing collaboration and innovation.
  3. Impact Assessment and Feedback Integration: Conduct a thorough evaluation of the challenge’s outcomes, gathering feedback from participants and partners to refine and enhance future iterations of the initiative.

With Grant Support

  1. Enhanced Educational Resources: Develop more comprehensive workshops and materials, possibly incorporating advanced tools and technologies for a deeper learning experience.
  2. Increased Reach and Participation: Expand the marketing and outreach efforts to include more universities and participants, potentially hosting additional ideathons.
  3. Strengthened Mentorship and Support: Enlist a wider range of industry experts and mentors, ensuring personalized guidance and support for participants throughout the challenge.

Without Grant Support

1.Focused Resource Allocation: Prioritize core activities and utilize existing networks and resources to maintain the quality of the challenge while seeking additional funding opportunities.
2. Community Contributions: Leverage volunteer support and community contributions for mentorship, workshops, and organizational tasks to sustain the initiative’s momentum.

Regardless of the funding situation, our commitment to achieving these milestones reflects our dedication to the “UniGraph Challenge’s” success, laying the groundwork for a transformative blockchain education and innovation experience in Kenya.

Please select who you think will benefit from your project?:
Subgraph Developers, Indexers, Curators, Delegators

How much funding are you looking for? (USD):
16500

Provide a breakdown of your requested funding:
Budget Breakdown
Ideathon Budget (Per Campus):
Space: $200
Food: $300
Internet: $50
Photography: $100
Banners and Event Material: $150
Audio Visual: $100
Total per Campus: $1200

Total for 5 Campuses: $4500

Productathon Budget:
Space: $400
Food: $650
Internet: $50
Photography: $100
Banners and Event Material: $150
Audio Visual: $150

Total for Productathon: $1500

Rewards and Stipends:
Ideathon Rewards: $600 per university x 5 = $3000
Productathon Rewards: $3500
Judges Stipend Ideathon: $300 each judge x 4 judges = $1200
Judges Stipend Productathon: $300 each judge x 4 judges = $1200
Team Stipend: $400 per team member x 4 members = $1600

Grand Total: $16,500

Have you applied for (or already received) funding from somewhere else?:
No

Can you share any information about current/past web3 experience?:
Here are links for a deeper review of my professional background and contributions:

LinkedIn Profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/victorgunga/
Twitter Profile: https://x.com/vicgunga?s=20

Twitter Links for Previous Event Posts:
https://twitter.com/vicgunga/status/1759263063402844655?t=rctsqthGd4BX2AyWevG49Q&s=19
https://twitter.com/vicgunga/status/1761675875106345006?t=ZYSCnLOaHD74Gzhs8uoxfw&s=19
https://twitter.com/vicgunga/status/1764269130021040160?t=3MD8I8xvNrYqMlGtwBAM2Q&s=19
https://twitter.com/vicgunga/status/1766576296790753583?t=ueOAMN73Rt7J3mty5HJHCw&s=19
https://twitter.com/vicgunga/status/1769006836735201690?t=vpI0IrF3TDXdouPg5GaIlA&s=19

GitHub Profile: doyeninnit (doyeninnit) / Repositories · GitHub

Other hackathons events, activities I have carried out:

Arbitrum Nairobi Meetup
Link: https://twitter.com/cryptogalaxy254/status/1733756104314679545?t=n2vygRyjU6_jRXcwo_00ew&s=19
Attendance: 84
Sponsor: Arbitrum Foundation

Solana Nairobi Meetup
Link: https://twitter.com/cryptogalaxy254/status/1743259700672471195?t=xf1sc1ohPVk84Ix7k_YaFA&s=19
Attendance: 42
Sponsor: Solana Foundation

ICP Zetech University Meetup
Link: https://twitter.com/cryptogalaxy254/status/1730923908612694351?t=BDQVYSZdjywU9K86znhF0g&s=19
Attendance: 117
Sponsor: ICP
Chainlink Smartcon Watchparty 2023
Link: https://twitter.com/doyeninit/status/1711734406291845444?t=TSkwJ651Mat6InYAYXdjYA&s=19
Attendance: 30
Sponsor: Chainlink

Gnosis Nairobi Meetup
Link: https://twitter.com/GriffinOduol/status/1673251261498507264?t=kxXG4NWn0C2PYw7iuOAZRQ&s=19
Attendance: 50
Sponsor: Gnosis Builders

Gnosis Ethsafari Side Event
Link: https://twitter.com/W3E_Kenyan/status/1706240688307007770?t=lb6-qrsHgwA-5TU_8BNdNg&s=19
Attendance: 96
Sponsor: Gnosis Builders

Gnosis Builders Kenya Hackathon
Link: https://twitter.com/W3E_Kenyan/status/1686255071862878209?t=VOmggozRhP8Mja9KZHYnEw&s=19
Attendance: 23
Sponsor: Gnosis Builders

Flow Nairobi Meetup
Link: flow Nairobi – Google Drive
Attendance: 88
Sponsor: Flow

Why are you interested in contributing to The Graph and/or web3?:
Our interest in contributing to The Graph and the broader web3 ecosystem stems from a deep belief in the transformative potential of decentralized technologies to reshape the internet, making it more open, inclusive, and user-centric. Here are the core reasons for our commitment:

1.Empowering True Ownership and Decentralization
We are driven by the vision of a decentralized web, where users have true ownership and control over their data. The Graph plays a critical role in this vision by facilitating decentralized and open access to data, enabling applications that can run in a fully decentralized manner. Contributing to The Graph and web3 aligns with our mission to promote these fundamental principles.

  1. Fostering Innovation and Accessibility
    The Graph’s technology lowers barriers to entry for developers to build innovative dApps by providing efficient, decentralized data querying capabilities. Our interest lies in nurturing an ecosystem where developers, regardless of their background, can contribute to and benefit from the web3 space, fostering a diverse range of solutions and applications.

  2. Supporting a Thriving Community
    The community around The Graph and web3 is vibrant, collaborative, and forward-thinking. We are excited about the opportunity to be part of this community, contributing our skills, learning from others, and together pushing the boundaries of what’s possible with decentralized technology.

  3. Addressing Real-World Challenges
    We believe that blockchain technology, and specifically the capabilities enabled by The Graph, have the potential to address significant real-world challenges. From improving transparency in supply chains to enabling secure and accessible financial services, the applications are vast. Our motivation is to be at the forefront of applying these technologies for social good.

5.Advancing Technological Education
Education plays a pivotal role in the adoption and advancement of any new technology. Our interest in The Graph and web3 also includes a commitment to educating and empowering the next generation of developers and innovators, ensuring they have the knowledge and resources to contribute effectively to this rapidly evolving space.

In essence, our engagement with The Graph and web3 is driven by a combination of technological passion, a commitment to decentralized principles, and a desire to contribute to a community that is building the foundation of the next iteration of the web. We see this as an opportunity not only to advance technology but also to foster a more equitable and user-empowered digital landscape.

Are you applying as a team or individual?:
Team

What type of grant are you pursuing?:
Project (one-off)

Please select the category your project best fits into:
Regional Community




Primary Community Poll

Do you fundamentally support this grant application, knowing that the final scope and grant amount may differ from the requested proposal?
  • Yes
  • No

0 voters




Grant Committee Vote

Do you recommend this grant to the DAO?
  • Yes
  • No

0 voters

Greetings!

  1. How do you plan to ensure that the challenges and solutions proposed within the UniGraph Challenge are relevant to the specific needs and context of the Kenyan blockchain community?

  2. While your proposal outlines various metrics for measuring success, how do you plan to track the long-term impact of the UniGraph Challenge.

  3. Are you open to considering adjustments to the budget to ensure that resources are allocated efficiently while still meeting the project’s objectives effectively?

Greetings,

Thank you for your insightful questions. Allow me to address them as follows:

Ensuring Relevance to the Kenyan Blockchain Community:

Our commitment to ensuring the challenges and solutions proposed within the UniGraph Challenge are highly relevant to the Kenyan context is paramount. We plan to achieve this through several key strategies:

  1. Community Engagement: Prior to launching the challenge, we will conduct a series of community engagement sessions, including workshops and roundtable discussions with local blockchain enthusiasts, developers, and stakeholders. This will help us gather insights into the specific needs, challenges, and opportunities within the Kenyan blockchain landscape.

  2. Partnership with Local Universities and Tech Hubs: By partnering with local educational institutions and tech hubs, we aim to tap into the grassroots level of innovation and creativity. These partnerships will allow us to tailor the challenges to address local issues that can benefit from blockchain solutions, ensuring the projects developed are both practical and impactful.

  3. Expert Advisory Panel: We will establish an advisory panel consisting of experts from the Kenyan blockchain community, academia, and industry leaders. Their role will be to guide the formulation of challenge statements, ensuring they reflect the real-world needs and can effectively drive meaningful solutions.

Tracking Long-Term Impact:

Measuring the long-term impact of the UniGraph Challenge is crucial for understanding its effectiveness and areas for improvement. To this end, we plan to implement several mechanisms:

  1. Follow-Up Surveys: Conduct surveys with past participants to track their progress in the blockchain space, including any projects initiated, continued involvement with The Graph, or advancements in their blockchain careers.

  2. Community Engagement Metrics: Monitor the growth and engagement levels within the blockchain community forums, social media, and local meetups over time. Increased activity and membership would indicate a lasting impact.

  3. Success Stories and Case Studies: Document and share success stories of notable projects and participants. This will not only serve as a testament to the challenge’s impact but also inspire ongoing participation and innovation.

4.Partnership Feedback: Seek feedback from our university and industry partners on the relevance and impact of the challenge on their students and broader ecosystem, adjusting our approach based on their insights.

Budget Adjustments for Efficient Resource Allocation:

We are fully committed to ensuring that our resources are allocated in the most efficient manner possible, without compromising the effectiveness and objectives of the UniGraph Challenge. We are open to making necessary adjustments to the budget.