Creating city DAO pilots for Melbourne
Author: Dr Max Parasol 3 min read
How will Victoria’s position in the global economy change as a result of a global digital update? What does the digital CBD mean for Victoria’s regions and precincts? How are we establishing Melbourne as a world renowned digital city?
Our December 2021 report, put forward the context for why Melbourne is in a timely position to re-imagine itself as a Digital CBD. This report, number two, of this research series, proposes a strategic pilot for business adjustment to the post COVID-19 digital environment. We have sought deep engagement from industry, government and the wider society to develop our public policy recommendations.
The goals of this report are tangible and focused. We have noted that alongside a decline in foot traffic in the CBD and an increase in remote work, there has been the challenge for small businesses in forecasting and planning. For example, if Deloitte’s audit team only works on a Thursday - how will the Bahn Mi sandwich shop in the bottom of their office building know how much stock to carry all week and specifically on Thursdays? How many extra rolls could be sold and or food waste minimised? These problems all have economic flow-on effects.
These economic shocks are all interrelated. So, alongside the problem of lowered CBD foot traffic came less customers, and then came the rent reductions. The broader economic shocks of landlord-tenant rent re-negotiations often lead to associated cash flow and working capital problems for both parties (due to reduced rents), and ultimately empty storefronts, empty buildings and a redistribution of capital.
This report focuses on creating a Digital CBD with a bricks-and-mortar-focused reinvention as its mission. And that seeks to engender a new sense of ownership and shared community amongst residents, office workers and business owners in the CBD.
The Solution: a proposed Pilot.
This report suggests a staged regenerative strategy targeting specific regions and precincts such as the Docklands, as a pilot aimed at helping the businesses that need data to survive and thrive. This will encourage office workers and floating CBD populations to once again return to the CBD.
In Stage 1, this report proposes a pilot for CBD people flow and other data collections. The goal is to assist SMEs with their economic forecasting and inventory. This pilot will help forecast working capital for businesses, by observing changing labour markets.
In Stage 2, that data will then be utilised by the Decentralised Autonomous Organisation (DAO). Retail/residential/commercial tenants could then take responsibility for their local environment: by creating a pilot Docklands DAO utilising crucial pooled data to optimise resource allocation, increase efficiency, and create opportunities for strategic placemaking.
We propose creating a DAO as a tool for:
1. Targeted economic stimulus
2. Community governance
3. Community engagement
The DAO is a non-hierarchical organisation designed to rejuvenate a pilot precinct for all stakeholders. It will be a DAO “data trust” designed to benefit all stakeholders. The DAO is the gatekeeper of all collected data that is to be used for the benefit of the DAO members and stakeholders. The concept of a DAO and the proposed operation of the pilot DAO is explained in depth in this forthcoming report.
The report will be released on 7 April 2022 via an online event where we will provide further insights regarding this proposal.
Dr Max Parasol
RMIT Blockchain Innovation Hub
For more information on the Digital CBD Project please visit The Future of the Digital CBD