Delegated Proof of Stake is a method of achieving distributed consensus in a cryptocurrency system. It is a variation of the Proof of Stake, which was developed as an alternative to the Proof of Work system that is used in mining for Bitcoin (and other cryptocurrencies). In Proof of Stake, the ability to earn rewards through processing transactions rests with coinholders (those with “stake”) rather than miners. In Delegated Proof of Stake, coinholders vote for delegates who are responsible for validating transactions and can earn transaction fees.
Read the original white paper here.