labDAO: a deeptech R&D engine for startup cities
decentralized science to empower new communities
In this new world where many of us can live and work where we choose, there is growing interest in building new cities that gather people together for reasons beyond a coincidence of geography. As technology has made location less important, decentralization of talent is well underway - just look at the rise of Miami, Austin, and remote work. Balaji coined the term “startup cities” in this post, to refer to cities that put in place incentives to attract startups, as well as new cities formed around a common mission or philosophy. Praxis is one such example.
Startup cities can explore new incentive structures, regulatory regimes, and governance. But beyond just a philosophical or political paradigm shift, we could build a deeptech R&D engine in one of these places, with new rules.
labDAO is a distributed, on-chain, R&D engine. We’re starting with a decentralized marketplace for scientific work, to address the needs of scientists and explorers. But labDAO will require real world R&D entities and infrastructure nodes, to offer services to the network.
By building one of these nodes in a startup city, we could explore new standards for IP licensing, offer up favorable tax incentives, or afford increased regulatory freedom. Scientists using labDAO can run their experiments anywhere on the network with available capacity, so nodes that are located in areas with favorable properties would naturally attract more usage. This R&D node could become the Switzerland of DeSci.
By hosting a labDAO node, the city would attract technical talent, infrastructure builders, and visionary scientists. It would become a natural place for formation of new companies or DAOs based off of the work done there, much in the same way universities acted as innovation nodes in the past. New institutions in these cities could fund cutting edge science through participation in the network.
labDAO doesn’t yet have any real world nodes, and I’m not sure where they might first arise. But if you want to generate a flywheel of real world scientific innovation that benefits your startup city, join labDAO and help us instantiate a node in your city.