President's Strategy Committee
Consultation with the ICANN Community
Improving the Inherent Strength of the Multi-stakeholder Model
At its December 2005 ICANN meeting, the ICANN Board, emphasizing the importance of the bottom-up ICANN processes, noted that the ICANN community could also 'benefit from the advice of a group responsible for making observations and recommendations concerning strategic issues facing ICANN.' In light of this, the ICANN Board passed a resolution for the President to appoint a President's Strategy Committee. This Committee plays an important role in providing observations and recommendations concerning strategic issues facing ICANN and contributing to ICANN's strategic planning process, which occurs in consultation with the community.
As ICANN heads towards 30 September 2006 expiration of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the United States Government, members of the President's Strategy Committee have had preliminary discussions about the path ahead. Out of these discussions the Committee has identified several themes where input from the community is needed.
ICANN's mission is founded on two key concepts. They are acting in the public trust, and developing decisions through a bottom up, consensus based process. ICANN is committed to a single, authoritative stable public root for the Internet Domain Name System (DNS) through the coordination and management of a unique identifier system. It is also committed to the management of that unique root in the public trust according to policies developed through participation and acceptance by the community. By offering users an easy-to-use and reliable means of unambiguously referring to web sites, e-mail servers, and the Internet's many other services, the DNS is helping the Internet achieve its promise of a global communications medium for commerce, research, education, social and cultural and other expressive activities. Effectively ICANN operates as a steward for users who depend on the Internet's naming resources. As a result ICANN needs to focus on participation and input to decision making regarding this global resource.
Members of the Committee have the view that the community believes that the basic elements of the model are strong. One of its main strengths is the model's emphasis on broad and informed participation by the community.
The model that ICANN represents has evolved over the past 7 years, and is now broadly endorsed around the world. It is unique in that it provides for participation by all stakeholders - and is a model for multi-stakeholder participation. One of the model's main strengths is its accountability to the Internet community and emphasis on broad and informed participation by the global community. Reported on by the OECD and discussed at the World Summit on the Information Society, ICANN has been accepted as an organization responsible for certain key issues and topics relevant to Internet governance.
Another strength of the ICANN model is that it able to evolve as necessary to accomplish its mission. To assist that evolution, members of the Committee agree that it should build on the inherent strength of the existing model and invite the participation of the community to provide feedback and ideas on certain key areas.
The basic question the Committee has asked itself is: How can the ICANN model be strengthened in the context of the evolution and growth of the Internet?
While a high level of analysis of the model has taken place already, there are specific questions on which the Committee would like input from the community.
The questions below identify some areas for further exploration and relate to ICANN's legal framework, policy making processes, administrative operations, transparency and accountability as well as the continued stable growth and operation of the domain name system.
Some specific questions are:
Process and Feedback:
The Committee welcomes feedback from the community in response to the above.
Accordingly, a web-enabled online consultation will take place on Friday, 21 July (time to be advised). This date and process was foreshadowed at the recent ICANN Marrakech conference.
So as to maximize use of the time available on the 21st, the Committee invites submissions and comments on the above to be lodged before Tuesday 18 July and sent to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Submitted comments may be viewed at http://forum.icann.org/lists/psc/.
On Thursday 20 July, an agenda for the Friday 21 July web-enabled online consultation will be posted. Contributors will be contacted on Wednesday 19 July and Thursday 20 July and may be invited to speak to their contributions on the next day. This will allow the Committee to examine particular issues in greater detail, and give the contributor an opportunity to provide more information and to amplify the points they have made.
All submissions and commentaries will be posted on-line.
Submissions can include:
There is no set format for a written submission. You can write a brief letter or a more substantial paper. If you want, you can attach appendices and other supporting documents. But it would be helpful if submissions addressed the above issues on which the committee would like input. If your submission is long, a brief summary would be also helpful.
The initial feedback received through this consultation will be reviewed by the Committee with the possibility of a summary provided to the US DoC consultations which take place on 26 July.
However, ongoing input and responses can be provided to the Committee through 15 August. The Committee will consider these and post a summary for further comment on 25 August to ensure the summary is an accurate reflection of the views received. The Committee will then report back to the ICANN Board and community by 1 September.
To summarize the process and timetable:
11 July Posting of this notice
18 July Submissions/comments from community to be lodged
20 July Agenda for web-enabled online consultations to be posted
21 July Web-enabled online consultations
26 July Summary of Committee's initial consultation to be provided to US DoC consultations
15 Aug Final date Committee will receive further submissions and comment
25 Aug Committee's summary of consultation to be posted
1 Sept Committee to report to ICANN Board and community
Please refer back to this site for further updates, relevant material and also the agenda for the consultation.
Current list of Committee members
Paul Twomey (Chair)
Carl Bildt (co-Chair)
Peter Dengate Thrush (co-Chair)