The rise of decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs): a first empirical glimpse

Cristiano Bellavitis, Christian Fisch, Paul P. Momtaz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


Blockchain technology and smart contracts are catalysts for decentralization and disintermediation. These new technologies reduce transaction costs, agency costs, and offer a basis for trustless social and economic interactions. They are fueling new business models for decentralized platforms and have revolutionized crowdfunding. A recent trend, Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs), stands to fundamentally transform organizing and governance. DAOs are blockchain-native, decentralized organizations that are collectively owned and managed by their members via smart contracts. In this note, we assess the promises and challenges of DAOs, with a focus on decentralized governance and disintermediation, and offer a first empirical glimpse at the rise and functioning of DAOs. Overall, DAOs may introduce a new era in organizational economics, transforming the global corporate landscape from hierarchical organizations to democratic and distributed organizations powered by organizational entrepreneurship and innovations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)187-203
Number of pages17
JournalVenture Capital
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • DAO
  • blockchain
  • decentralized autonomous organization
  • ethereum

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Finance


Dive into the research topics of 'The rise of decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs): a first empirical glimpse'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this