Cartesi DApp Incubation Program

$80K+ in prizes to the best three DApps

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What is Cartesi

Cartesi is the only infrastructure that allows developers to use Linux and mainstream software stacks to build powerful DApps. Complex processing can be executed off-chain, free from blockchain's computational limits and corresponding fees.


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Up to 20K USD to each of the three teams selected to join the Incubation program

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Access to mentoring and training by experts in blockchain

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Promotion of your DApp in Cartesi's channels and additional publicity opportunities

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Cartesi will invest +20K USD in a matching pool, to be distributed among the top three teams according to the Quadartic Funding system. But that’s not all! Any additional funds raised by the community will get added as a bonus to each team’s winnings.

How It Works

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In phase I, between September 14 - October 12, 2020, submit your application to join the Cartesi DApp Incubation program in partnership with Gitcoin. You may request a budget (up to 20K USD) that you think will be enough to fund your project for three months and set your own development milestones along with delivery deadlines. With the timely achievement of each milestone, a portion of the total amount you requested will get unlocked and paid out to your team.


In phase II, three teams will be selected out of all the applicants to build their Cartesi DApps, which must be submitted by February 1, 2021. Build your DApp in your preferred industry, while receiving mentoring from top experts in the field.


In Phase III, between Feb 17 - 28, an additional award will be determined by a Quadratic Funding system from Gitcoin. Cartesi will invest additional 20K in a matching pool (plus any extra amount raised by the community) to be distributed across the three projects in accordance with the number of votes each one has gathered.


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September 14 - October 12, 2020Submit your idea by filling out the application forms

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October 13 - October 22, 2020Review of applications

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October 23, 2020Announcement of the three teams to join the incubation program

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October 26 - January 25, 2020Incubation program, mentoring & DApp building

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February 8 - 19Gitcoin community voting

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February 1, 2021Submission of final DApps

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February 17 - 28, 2021Gitcoin Grants round

Apply Now

Submit your application by October 12, 2020 before midnight ET.

Ideas for DApp Development


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Interested in DeFi? Applications built on Cartesi will be able to perform complex and intensive computation involving large amounts of data. These features give DeFi immense power, releasing it from the current scalability constraints of blockchain, in a fully decentralized way. Additionally, Cartesi allows for blockchain introspection. Parties can enter into contracts that depend on the entire state of the blockchain where the contracts are themselves defined.


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Gamer at heart? Cartesi will unleash vast new possibilities for blockchain games. You will be able to use traditional tools and libraries that can be compiled for Linux for your decentralized game logic. Additionally, game state processing will be free from the computational limits and high fees of blockchains without the need to sacrifice decentralization. Check out Creepts, our first tower defense game

Social Impact

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Come up with an idea that will improve a social cause, such as safeguarding data privacy, improving the lives of others, facilitating transactions in communities, monitoring violence and other similar causes.

We are open to all ideas

Build a Cartesi DApp in any field you choose. Put your creativity at work.


CriteriaOriginality and creativity of the idea

CriteriaFunctionality of the code and the DApp

CriteriaPracticality and expected reach

CriteriaGreat user experience (when applicable)

CriteriaNo plagiarism or infringement on intellectual property rights

CriteriaRelevance and priorities of the Cartesi ecosystem

CriteriaSolving a true problem

CriteriaAbility of the team to continue development

CriteriaTeam’s qualifications and proven experience

CriteriaClarity and quality of the technical proposal

CriteriaClear deliverables and milestones

CriteriaProposed product documentation

CriteriaSecurity of the DApp’s users

CriteriaDevelopment methodologies (e.g. automated testing, CI, tools, processes)


  • Developers can join the team individually or as a team with as many members they want
  • All DApps must be built using the Cartesi Descartes SDK
  • The project needs to be released as open-source code. Apache 2.0 is preferred; GPL v3 is also acceptable.
  • All final submissions including at least a working prototype, documentation and automated tests must be delivered before February 1, 2021, midnight EST. All submissions must include a completed form, operable program, code, and descriptive documentation using a GitHub link.
  • Submissions must be in English. All program communication must be in English
  • Cartesi will subsidize a maximum of 1 selected project per team.
  • Participating teams and developers keep the ownership and intellectual property rights of their projects.
  • All teams provide consent to be featured by Cartesi in various marketing activities and agree with the use of any team member’s name, voice, likeness, and biographical information in connection with the contest for any commercial, publicity, or promotional purpose without limitation, review, approval or compensation
  • Cartesi has the right to choose, at its own discretion and criteria, which of the projects will be selected to join the Incubation Program. Cartesi does not have to provide feedback.
  • The Cartesi Foundation will notify the approved applicants once their proposal has been accepted for funding.
  • For the teams to get approved in the program, Cartesi may need to request for revisions and changes on top of the proposal that the team submitted originally.
  • Payouts schedule. Disbursements should occur according to partial milestones specified in the team's project roadmap and as discussed with the Cartesi team. Payouts will be made on specific dates each month decided and communicated by Cartesi
  • No purchase necessary to apply or to be approved in the program.
  • Only people above 18 years old are eligible to participate. (1) The application must be the original work of the individual participant or the participating team; (2) third-party technology used by the individual participant or the participating team must be subject to valid perpetual, irrevocable licenses; (3) Third-party software used must also be open-source and its usage must be compatible with the license of the code to be developed by the team.
  • Cartesi reserves the right in its sole discretion to suspend, modify, or terminate the contest at any time or disqualify and terminate the relationship with the participating teams.
  • Cartesi will invest additional 20K in a matching pool. The matching pool and any extra amount raised by the community will be distributed across the three projects in accordance with Quadratic Funding methodology by Gitcoin Full Terms & Conditions here



Can teams participate?

Yes you can participate as an individual or as a team with as many members as you wish.


Can l submit more than one idea?

During the call-for-applications phase, you can submit as many ideas as you wish. If you are selected to join the program, you can submit and work on only one DApp, and you will be judged based on that.


Do l keep the intellectual property rights of my work?

Yes, of course you do.


How can l submit my application to join?

Fill in this form by October 12, 2020 00:00 ET to sign up for Phase I of the Incubation Program (in partnership with Gitcoin)


Is it open to all regions?



What is the language of communication?

All communication will be in English and all submissions must be in English to be considered eligible


What happens if I decide to leave the program before the end, or if l don’t submit a DApp in the end?

You can leave the program whenever you want. Payouts will be unlocked according to certain development milestones agreed with Cartesi. This means that Cartesi will be having regular meetings with you to evaluate progress.


What is Quadratic Funding? How much money will the best team receive?

Quadratic Funding is a mechanism that enables communities to dictate how a pool of funds is distributed among open-source projects for public benefit.. Find out more here. Cartesi will offer a $20k matching pool to be distributed to the top three Cartesi projects. But the community gets to decide how those funds are distributed among the projects by "voting with their money" (ie. donating).However the match is not a 1 to 1 ratio, each project's matching amount is decided by both the number of unique donors and the amount donated. A $1 donation can go a long way!


Can you give me an example of how Quadratic Funding works?

Check out "Quadratic Payments: A Primer" and "Quadratic Funding in a Nutshell" to get a better understanding. As a very simplified example, to demonstrate the "quadratic" nature, two individuals donating $5 each will earn the same match as one individual donating $25. Essentially, the idea of this mechanism is to give more power in allocating funds to the masses, as opposed to the wealthiest. The number of individual donors is weighted more heavily than the size of donation.


How much funding will each of the three selected teams receive? When will they receive it?

Each of the three selected teams will receive up to 20K USD each.


How will l receive mentoring? How often?

You will have a chance to book an online meeting with available mentors on a first-come-first-serve basis. Simply check who is available and book as many meetings as you want.