[PROPOSAL XX] Signaling Proposal For Cosmos hub improvement - Permissioned CosmWasm

This proposal replaces proposal 893. Proposal 893 incorrectly has an IPFS hash in the description field. The actual proposal text is as follows, also viewable at https://ipfs.io/ipfs/QmUxGC9G5Xx2XttCEThptaJuM3Gpn6xZJdXMRuu81Jguhf

Permissioned CosmWasm Implementation on the Cosmos Hub

The impending Cosmos Hub fork is opening new paths forward for $ATOM. As there is little need for both chains to be conservative and minimal in nature, now is the perfect time to introduce a permissioned implementation of CosmWasm on the $ATOM platform.

Permissioned Approach

We suggest a permissioned approach over a permissionless one for the following reasons:

  1. Minimizes risk of potential exploits
  2. Discourages spam or wasteful contracts by governance-gating every single one
  3. Each proposal would involve uploading a single contract for review and approval

It’s important to note that the goal is not to compete with Neutron or any other chain, but rather to use the CosmWasm module for functionalities that would otherwise be impossible, cumbersome, or impractical to implement through other means.

Enhancing Governance and Restaking

The Cosmos Hub aims to become a leader in restaking within the Interchain ecosystem. To achieve this, it is necessary to enhance the reliability and efficiency of governance processes, particularly in:

  • Onboarding and managing consumer chain relations
  • Treasury management

Tools like DaoDao are well-suited to accomplish these objectives by separating decision-making into specialized streams that are directly accountable to stakers.


As a result, we propose the addition of permissioned CosmWasm on the Cosmos Hub to improve the reliability and efficiency of its governance system. We believe that this path will unlock countless opportunities for increased security, utility, and efficiency as the network continues to evolve.

By implementing this proposal, the Cosmos Hub can position itself as a pioneer in the Interchain ecosystem, offering enhanced governance capabilities and attracting more stakeholders to participate in the network’s growth and development.

Thank you for your time and valuable input.



As seen on Twitter:

“Permissioned CW on the Hub, not to compete with Neutron or Osmo but to build up the infrastructure. Gov tooling, security infra, mesh, DAOs…”

The end.

Full support.


We may well vote yes, but we will condemn lazy proposal posts that use GPT.

Have some respect for the Hub.

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I have no reason to vote no with this. Support.


Could be a nice collaboration effort with Confio since the Hub provided them with a good chunk of funding this year in proposal 103?

Ultimately, I agree with the sentiment that the primary (and most vocal) opposition to this idea is now forking off, and the Hub can now choose it’s destiny and not be tied to the very strict and conservative view on it’s uses if it wants. Maybe said opposition wants their cake and to eat it, too, but that’s another issue entirely.

That said, I believe this has to be tied to very specific use cases. Permissioned implementation will show what the Hub views as acceptable through a voting process, but I think it’s important we have a goal in mind for what makes the most sense on the Hub directly that can’t simply be done on Neutron or elsewhere.

Edit: and we have to be very explicit that this cannot undermine anything that Neutron is capable of. It’s important we maintain a healthy relationship with them and work to make the partnership good for both.


the fork is maybe the better thing that can happen. Fully support

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I would keep most of the use cases that are being advertised here on Neutron, except for Mesh Security, which doesn’t work on a consumer chain, since it needs the ability to slash delegators.

Using Neutron strengthens Neutron, and by extension the Cosmos Hub. Having two platforms for general purpose CosmWasm use is fragmentation. Sort of like how Google used to have everyone using Gmail chat, then they launched 8 different messenger apps and now nobody uses any of them.

The Hub does not currently have the BD muscle to build adoption for a smart contract platform, which is not easy given that there are more smart contract platforms than there are applications. So currently it makes more sense to consolidate our strength behind the platform we have, and not risk splitting our strength.

Imagine if Vitalik decided he could do better after Uniswap had already launched, and built his own DEX on Ethereum. IMO it would have hurt Uniswap, DeFi, and Ethereum if they had fragmented and competed with their own platform’s users like that.

So for projects like @Noam 's AAT, Atom Wars, Timewave covenants etc. I think the Hub is better off doing them on Neutron to build momentum there.

“But Neutron might not be aligned, what if they run away with our shit, etc?”

Neutron can’t run away with our shit. Neutron is fully under the control of the Cosmos Hub validators. If they want to stop being a consumer chain of course they can offboard smoothly, but that offboarding would definitely include the migration of any Hub specific logic to the Hub’s own CW instance.

In conclusion, I am cautiously supportive of this proposal in principle, with the understanding that CW on the Hub should not be used for a million random DeFi apps, and not even necessarily for the Hub’s own DeFi apps as long as we have Neutron.

I would personally vote yes only if the proposal includes language specifying that the CW implementation is only to be used for things that are not possible to implement on a consumer chain due to the low level access they need to Hub state, for example Mesh Security.


Hard NO. The fact that the community decided to reduce the inflation of ATOM doesn’t mean that we are now going to allow everybody to run crappy code on the Hub. Get a grip. If you want to run your code, you can run it on Neutron. Why do you want to run it on the Hub? Because you think that adds value to it?

It doesn’t, ok. Running crappy code on a blockchain and breaking it does not add value.


Governance Smart Contracts

I’m assuming this refers to DAOs coming to the Hub and potentially creating their tokens here. Considering the wider Cosmos is moving to TokenFactory instead of CW20 tokens, would you then also propose the Hub add the TokenFactory module?


Thank you for your suggestions. Edited. Can we connect more to write up a more professional looking prop?

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There’s no reason to “only vote yes for permissioned cw on the hub with stipulations of what we upload”

That’s what the permissioned part is for.

We’ll have an absurdly long governance forum and 2 week voting period for any type of code uploading that you can freely be for/against to your hearts content.


The proposal to incorporate permissioned CosmWasm into the $ATOM hub has its pros and cons. While the idea of focusing on governance improvements and MESH SECURITY is good, we need to be cautious about the complexities and security risks it might bring. To play it safe, it’s suggested to keep smart contracts limited to governance enhancement purposes, aligning with the vision we shared in our permissionless B2B2C network essay.

Considering the $ATOM hub’s central role in the broader Cosmos ecosystem, highlighted in the mentioned post, we should encourage innovation in interchain governance and Governance as a Service (GaaS). However, to maintain control, it’s crucial to set clear boundaries for CosmWasm usage, ensuring it stays within the intended scope. Moreover, requiring a supermajority vote for new contract deployments, rather than relying on regular governance factors, adds an extra layer of security and ensures broad community consensus before implementing new features. These suggestions aim to strike a balance between fostering innovation and maintaining security, in line with the strategic vision for the $ATOM hub.



Just posting here to say I am 100% in agreement with Jehan on this topic.

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I’m pretty supportive of CW on the Cosmos Hub. That said I do think it’s useful to think critically about the why so my question would be :

What can you do with CW directly on the Cosmos Hub that can’t be done by deploying it on Neutron ?

For a specific example, why couldn’t the Mesh Security implementation be deployed on Neutron ?


Agree on this, but it is difficult to implement.

You are right that technically there is no difference in the deployed code, but norms and precedents do matter. That’s the whole point of signaling proposals, which is what this will be until the code lands in an upgrade. Matters of policy that are more nuanced than “run this code” can also be specified.

Are you opposed to having stipulations about what the feature is for?


As I originally stated:

“Permissioned CW on the Hub, not to compete with Neutron or Osmo but to build up the infrastructure. Gov tooling, security infra, mesh, DAOs…”

I don’t forsee any scope creep or doing anything stupid like becoming an app store (that already failed)

Let’s not complicate this with a framework, stipulations, and red tape…when the literal point of permissioned cw handles it for us.

I don’t need to explain this to you though. I know you know how this works.


When you say “permissioned”, what are the permissioning rules? If the permissioning rule is the current governance rule of Cosmos Hub, I would say they are not good enough. 50% is quite the low threshold. I would say super majority 67% is needed for this. Is this possible to do if this were to be implemented?

I am very concerned about scope creep and frivolous interpretations of the mandates specified here. You just want to push your proposal without specifying any rules which essentially makes this an unpermissioned CW instance like Neutron.

If I were to put CW on the Hub, I would actually want red tape:

  1. First, I would explicitly state the mandate and scope of coding activity allowed.
  2. Then I would mandate that signaling proposals be run through a review committee first to block out proposals that aren’t aligned with the stated objectives.
  3. Then the code needs to be run on Neutron or another CW environment and tested in real world environments for a certain amount of time (Polkadot has the Kusama testing chain)
  4. And then at then end, I would want 67% approval for the code to be put on after the extensive testing is completed and functionality works without bugs.

Putting code on the Hub should not be easy. It should be very, very hard. The Cosmos Hub is not a agile iterative software product anymore. It was that when it didn’t have 3 billion market cap. Now it does and it supports commerce for 10x to 100x bigger market cap, and for that reason it now requires a more formal waterfall/feature driven development process.


Yeah, I respectfully disagree with everything you proposed.

Sounds like a surefire way to continue losing the plot and stagnation.

Guess we’ll see what happens.


The most often used and important things are pretty stagnant. A toll booth doesn’t move a whole lot, does it? Yet it finances the local government. I don’t understand why people want to make ATOM into something it is not. Why do you want to make it into Ethereum? If people want to run smart contracts, there is other chains to do that (Ethereum, Solana, Avalanche, etc). If ATOM became a smart contract chain, then it will then be competing in a crowded field against better competitors. ATOM is neither faster nor more decentralized than an Avalanche or Solana or nowadays SUI, Aptos, etc. That is not a narrative/selling pitch that is a winner for ATOM. If somebody wants to deploy WASM smart contract somewhere, they are far more likely to do it on Solana which has a much higher throughput and thus guarantees lower transaction fees than ATOM would.

Case in point - where is the Neutron revenue? If there was really that much demand for smart contracts in Cosmos, Cosmos Hub validators wouldn’t be complaining that Neutron is a money loser for them. Cosmos’ unique offering is sovereignty (building chains from scratch) and interoperability. That’s what it needs to focus on. With that focus it is getting the biggest apps - like DYDX. Being the platform for the biggest crypto apps is what Cosmos is all about. Smart contracts are by definition experimental apps that haven’t been proven yet. When they get big enough they will vertically integrate and transition to a sovereign chain.

You keep asking for functionality no one will be using. You think CosmWasm on the Hub will drive its price up? It won’t. It only increases its fragility and volatility (in a negative sense). On 2030FDV basis, at $7 billion ATOM is already bigger than smart contract platforms like Sui, Algorand, Near, Dfinity. If you are using the ATOM market cap as a valuation metric, that is a bit deceptive because ATOM has very high inflation compared to other chains and as such it is significantly more valuable than you think. Institutions don’t value tokens using current market cap but fully diluted market cap.