What is the Diem Association

The Diem Association is an independent membership organization in charge of supervising the launch, growth, and operations of the Diem payment system. Here's a guide on how it works.

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What is the Diem Association

The objective of Diem is to make it simple and easy for people around the world to send and receive money. The driving force behind the Diem project is a group known as the Diem Association, an entity made up of a partnership of 27 corporates, nonprofits and VCs which make up its founding members. 

Its most notable members include Facebook, Spotify, Coinbase, PayU, Shopify, Uber, Lyft and Checkout.com. As the Diem Association plans grow rapidly in the coming years, it’s good to understand what the Association is, what it does, and how it works.

Key Takeaways
  • The Diem Association is a consortium made up of 27 companies, including big tech names like Uber, Lyft, Spotify, and Coinbase.
  • The organization has many responsibilities including overseeing the growth and management of the Diem payment system and network.
  • All major Diem policy decisions go through Association Council voting.
  • Each of the Association’s 27 members has a representative on the Diem Association’s Council. 
  • For a vote to pass, two-thirds of the Association Council must vote to agree. 

The Role of the Diem Association

The Diem Association is an independent membership organization that’s in charge of supervising the launch, growth, and operations of the Diem payment system. Since the Association’s responsibilities are wide-ranging, each member fulfills varying roles and responsibilities within the organization.

Maintaining the Diem Reserve

One of the most important roles of the Diem Association is to ensure that the Diem Dollar maintains its value. As a stablecoin, Diem is pegged to the US Dollar. This means that its value will only change relative to the price of USD. In order to preserve the long-term stability of a stablecoin, the cryptocurrency must maintain a reserve that ensures the stablecoin can hold its own wealth in value.

The Diem Association has entrusted SilverGate Bank with a number of operational responsibilities related to the Diem Network, including minting new Diem Dollars, maintaining the Diem Reserve, and burning Diem Dollars when they’re redeemed. 

SilverGate is responsible for maintaining and overseeing the Diem Reserve which protects users’ funds by ensuring they are backed 1:1 with cash and cash equivalents. That means, if Diem users want to redeem 100 Diem Dollars, the Diem Association will give you the equivalent value it holds in its reserve.

Ensuring Regulatory Compliance

Another responsibility of the Diem Association is to make sure that the Diem payment system is compliant with local regulation and policy. According to the Diem Association, the Diem Dollar is designed to complement existing currencies. That means it is part of the Association’s responsibility to ensure that the Diem currency is able to integrate into the global financial system without posing any threat to the stability of local economies.

The Diem Association has dedicated roles that make sure the Association’s activities are fully compliant legally. Members of the Diem Association are also responsible for monitoring Diem’s permissioned blockchain and preventing fraud on the Diem network.

Scaling Diem Globally

Diem aims to develop rapidly and become a major cryptocurrency in just a few short years. Part of the Association’s purpose is to develop new functionalities and help the payment system scale. In keeping with the goals of the Diem project, the Association wants to make Diem an affordable payment method that fosters financial inclusion.

See Also: Why You Should Add Diem as a Payment Method to Your Store

How the Diem Association Works

The Diem Association is headquartered in the US and is made up of 27 members. With dozens of varying roles, councils, and a board of directors, it’s easy to lose track of its structure. Here’s a simple breakdown of how the Diem Association works from the inside out.

Association Members

The Diem Association is made up of 27 member organizations that function independently of Facebook. Facebook itself has a single governing vote at the Association Council, just like all other 26 members of the Diem Association. 

As well as coming from many different countries, these member organizations represent a wide range of industries. Some are VCs or non-profits, and some come from the e-commerce and financial sectors. 

“Some of the most prominent Diem Association Members you may recognize include Uber, Lyft, Spotify, Coinbase, Checkout.com, and PayU. Not-for-profit member corporations also include Women’s World Banking and the micro-loan pioneer Kiva.”

Association Council

In 2019, Diem Association Members signed the Diem Association Charter which established the creation of the Diem Association Council. The council is made up of one representative from each member of the consortium. That means each of the Association’s 27 member organizations has a representative on the Diem Association’s Council which is designed to ensure that each has the same privileges and obligations as the others. See How Diem Works

Board of Directors

In addition to the Association Council, a five-member board of directors is elected to carry out the day-to-day management and representation of the Diem Association. Although all 27 members of the Association have a say in major policy decisions, the board of directors handles the minor everyday management. Today, these members are the General Counsel of PayU, the CEO of Xapo, the CSO of Kiva, the General Partner of Andreessen Horowitz, and the Head of Novi.

Association Voting

The way the Diem Association’s voting system works is very simple. All major policy decisions concerning the operations and development of the Diem cryptocurrency go through the process of Association Council voting. In order to pass a vote, two-thirds of the Association Council representatives need to agree. This is a tried-and-true supramajority consortium structure that has remained since the days of the Libra Association.

Learn More About the Diem Association

To learn more about the Diem Association and how it works, we recommend reading the Association’s extensive White Paper outlining the structure of the organization and all its inner-workings.

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