One of Shelley’s main features is the rewards and incentivization mechanism, which helps ensure strong network participation and discourage bad actors. You can read IOHK’s paper on incentivization for more details. The Incentivized Testnet will feature live incentivization within a sandboxed environment: the ada rewards earned for delegating a stake or running a stake pool are real and, once the testnet is complete, spendable. We’re using real money to monitor real responses, and to assess how the mechanism functions within a live setting.
In addition, hosting the Incentivized Testnet allows IOHK to:
- Gather a diverse set of high-quality stake pool operators in preparation for Shelley’s release on the mainnet
- Optimize network stability and performance
- Test economic incentives and protocol features
- Ensure incentives for delegators and stake pool operators align with those of the overall network