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Committee on ICANN Evolution and Reform

Summary

The Committee on ICANN Evolution and Reform is a Committee of the Board that was originally established as the "Committee on Restructuring" by resolution 01.132 at the third ICANN annual meeting on 15 November 2001. It was given its current name and charter by resolution 02.20 on 14 March 2002.

The Committee is responsible for:

  • monitoring and providing reports to the Board on possible changes to the structure of ICANN;
  • evaluating and making recommendations to the Board concerning any specific proposals or applications to the Board that would or could affect the structure of ICANN or the composition of the Board;
  • considering input from the community on reform of ICANN's structure and consulting with specific stakeholders for clarifications or further input; and
  • preparing recommendations to the Board regarding, first and foremost, a statement of ICANN's essential functions and its mission, as well as the appropriate structure of ICANN and the processes by which it should function.

Background

The Committee was originally created on 15 November 2001 by resolutions 01.132 through 01.134, in view of considerable discussion at that time within the ICANN community of possible changes in the structure of ICANN, including possible new Supporting Organizations and new or revised mechanisms for selecting ICANN Directors. The original resolution established the committee, appointed its membership, and directed ICANN's President to to bring to the Board for its review and approval recommendations for how best to reaffirm and clarify the nature and scope of ICANN's limited mission."

On 24 February 2002, ICANN President Stuart Lynn issued a report entitled "ICANN–the Case for Reform", which discussed the mission ICANN was attempting to achieve, reviewed the performance of the existing processes and structure of ICANN in relation to that mission, concluded that those processes and structures would not permit ICANN to achieve its mission (as then understood), and recommended significant evolutionary reforms.

The subject of ICANN reform was extensively discussed by the participants in the March 2002 ICANN meeting in Accra, Ghana. The ICANN Board responded to this discussion by adopting a series of resolutions at its Accra meeting on 14 March 2002. Those resolutions:

  • Changed the Committee's name to "Committee on ICANN Evolution and Reform";

  • Instructed the Committee to recommend a framework for the structure and functioning of a reformed ICANN, and a timetable for implementing that framework;

  • Provided that the Committee would consider the following issues:

    • first and foremost, a list of essential functions of ICANN, and a proposed mission statement for ICANN;
    • means of ensuring that ICANN decisionmaking takes proper account of the public interest in its activities;
    • mechanisms for meaningful participation and input from informed Internet users;
    • structures for participation of all stakeholders in ICANN's deliberations and decision making;
    • the interactions and cooperative functioning of the different components of any proposed structure;
    • checks and balances that will ensure both the effectiveness and the openness of the organization;
    • the ways in and conditions under which essential components of any proposed structure that may not be able to be fully incorporated at the start of the reform process will be included when appropriate; and
    • a proposed transition process from the current structure to any recommended new structure, including a description of how the present components of ICANN relate to the new proposed structure, and the anticipated timetable for that transition.

  • Strongly encouraged comments and suggestions relating to ICANN evolution and reform from all stakeholders to the Committee;

  • Provided that the Committee should work closely with the President and staff throughout the process, including in the solitication of comments, views, and proposals from the Internet community;

  • Scheduled the Board's consideration of any recommendations for the Bucharest meeting on 28 June 2002, with prior posting for public review by 31 May 2002.

Members of the Committee

The members of the Committee on ICANN Evolution and Reform are Alejandro Pisanty (chair), Lyman Chapin, and Nii Quaynor.

Activities

The Committee is currently working on the task list set out in resolutions 02.21 through 02.26, described above.

The Committee is engaged in reaching out to stakeholders regarding their views on ICANN reform and is employing the following mechanisms for receiving written input:

1. Substantive submissions can be made to reform-comments@icann.org (Forum closed 18 August 2003). All submissions made will be reviewed, sorted by subject, indexed, and posted on the ICANN forum web site. This mechanism is intended to promote thoughtful community discussion of the issues involved in the ICANN reform process.

2. The Committee has also established an e-mail address (reform@icann.org) which can be used for direct communications to the Committee, including both inquiries and comments regarding the Committee's report and proposals for the Committee's consideration.. Submissions to this address will not be routinely posted.

3. Finally, the existing web-based forum on President Lynn's proposal will remain available to all who wish to use it. This forum is automatically updated and will not be sorted in any way.

The Committee encourages all interested parties to offer their views on the important and complicated subject of ICANN evolution and reform. It will appreciate all the help it can get in formulating recommendations.

On 2 October 2002, the Commitee posted its Final Implementation Report and Recommendations, which will be the main topic of discussion at the ICANN meetings in Shanghai from 28-31 October 2002.

Committee Documents

ICANN Board:

Submissions of Assistance Efforts

Links to Other Relevant Documents and Resources

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