ICANN Logo

ccNSO Assistance Group: Preliminary Recommendation on Policy-Development Process (for Comment and Feedback)

11 November 2002


ccNSO Assistance Group
Preliminary Recommendation on Policy-Development Process
(for Comment and Feedback)

11 November 2002

Consistent with the 29 October 2002 ccNSO Assistance Group Communiqué, the Assistance Group has prepared its preliminary recommendation on the Policy-Development Process. The Assistance Group requests feedback within the coming week (no later than 19 November 2002) for comments to be given utmost consideration. The preliminary recommendation on the Policy-Development Process can be found in Annex A. The ccNSO Assistance Group will consider feedback received on this preliminary recommendation and its effect on other recommendations.

Click here to read comments on this preliminary recommendation.

The posting of the preliminary recommendation on the Policy-Development Process is the second preliminary recommendation for the five issue areas that make up the Assistance Groupís work-plan (i.e. to come up with recommendations on five category areas identified out of the Blueprint, namely scope of the ccNSO as a global policy-development body; process of policy development in the ccNSO; ccNSO membership; structure of the ccNSO; ccNSO Council).

The preliminary thinking on scope was posted on 22 October 2002, and the ccNSO Assistance Group met with the ccTLD constituency on 28 October 2002 to receive input on its thinking. The Assistance Group received general support for its proposed methodology for defining scope and based on this it will solidify its recommendation.

The ccNSO Assistance Group will over the next weeks be issuing its preliminary recommendations on the three remaining areas of its work-plan: ccNSO membership; structure of the ccNSO; ccNSO Council.

As stated in its Communiqué, after the ccNSO Assistance Group has issued and received feedback on all of its preliminary recommendations, it will, following consideration of comments and their effect on other recommendations, compile the recommendations and provide them to the ERC. The ccNSO Assistance Group is extremely conscious of ensuring that it provides its recommendations in a prudent, timely, and efficient manner.


Annex A
Assistance Group DRAFT
11 November 2002
ccNSO Policy-Development Process

The following process shall govern the ccNSO policy-development process ("PDP") until such time as modifications are recommended to and approved by the ICANN Board of Directors ("Board").

1. Initiating an Issue Report

Step 1 in the PDP is to request an Issue Report. An Issue Report may be requested for consideration as part of the PDP by any of the following:

a. Council. The Council may initiate an Issue Report by an affirmative vote of at least 33% of the members of the Council present at any meeting at which a motion to begin the process outlined in this Annex is put.

b. Board. The Board may initiate an Issue Report by requesting the ccNSO Council ("Council") to begin the process outlined in this Annex.

c. Region. One or more of the 5 ccTLD Regions may initiate an Issue Report by requesting through its Council members that the Council begin the process outlined in this Annex.

d. ICANN Supporting Organisation or Advisory Committee. An ICANN Supporting Organisation or an ICANN Advisory Committee may initiate an Issue Report by requesting the Council to begin the process outlined in this Annex.

A request for an Issues Report must be in writing and must set out the issue upon which an Issue Report is requested in sufficient details to enable the Issue Report to be prepared. It shall be open to the Council to request further information should it consider it necessary in order for the Issue Report to be created.

2. Creation of the Issue Report

Within fifteen (15) calendar days after an affirmative vote as outlined in 1 a) above or the receipt of a request as outlined in 1 b), c) and d) above the Issue Manager will create a report (an Issue Report"). Each Issue Report shall contain at least the following:

a. The proposed issue raised for consideration;

b. The identity of the party submitting the issue;

c. How that party is affected by the issue;

d. Support for the issue to initiate the PDP;

e. A recommendation from the Issue Manager as to whether the Council should move to initiate the PDP for this issue (the "Manager Recommendation"). Each Manager Recommendation shall include the opinion of the ICANN General Counsel regarding whether the issue is properly within the scope of the ICANN policy process as it pertains to ccTLDs. In coming to his opinion, the General Counsel shall examine whether the issue:

1. is within the scope of ICANN's mission statement;

2. is within the scope of the ccNSO pursuant to the ccNSOs Scope Matrix;

3. is likely to have lasting value or applicability, albeit with the need for occasional updates;

4. will establish a guide or framework for future decision-making; or

5. implicates or affects an existing ICANN policy.

f. On or before the fifteen (15) day deadline, the Issue Manager shall distribute the Issue Report to the full Council for a vote on whether to initiate the PDP, as discussed below.

3. Initiation of PDP

The Council shall decide whether to initiate the PDP as follows:

a. Within 15 days after receipt of an Issue Report from the Issue Manager, the Council shall meet to vote on whether to initiate the PDP. Such meeting may be convened in any manner deemed appropriate by the Council, including in person, via conference call or via electronic mail.

b. A vote of either more than 50% of the Council members present or a vote of 100% of the Council members present representing 2 or more Regions, in favor of initiating the PDP will suffice to initiate the PDP PROVIDED THAT in the event that the Manager Recommendation states that the issue is not properly within the scope of the ICANN mission statement or the ccNSO Scope Matrix, then a Supermajority Vote of the Council members present in favor of initiating the PDP will be required to initiate the PDP.

4. Commencement of the PDP

At the meeting of the Council where the PDP has been initiated pursuant to Item 3 above, the Council shall decide, by a majority vote of members present at the meeting, whether or not to appoint a task force to address the issue. If the Council votes:

a. In favor of convening a task force, it shall do so in a accordance with the provisions of Item 7 below.

b. Against convening a task force, then it will collect information on the policy issue in accordance with the provisions of Item 8 below.

5. Composition and Selection of Task Forces

a. Upon voting to appoint a task force, the Council shall invite each of the Regions to appoint two individuals to participate in the task force. Additionally, the Council may appoint up to three outside advisors to sit on the task force. (Each task force member representing a Region is referred to in this Annex as a "Representative" and collectively, the "Representatives"). The Council may increase the number of Representatives that may sit on a task force in its discretion in circumstances that it deems necessary or appropriate.

b. Any Region wishing to appoint Representatives to the task force must submit the names of the Representatives to the Issue Manager within ten (10) calendar days after such request in order to be included on the task force. Such Representatives need not be a member of the Council, but must be an individual who has an interest, and ideally knowledge and expertise, in the Issue to be developed, coupled with the ability to devote a substantial amount of time to task force activities.

c. The Council may also pursue other options that it deems appropriate to assist in the PDP, including appointing a particular individual or organization to gather information on the issue or scheduling meetings for deliberation or briefing. All such information shall be submitted to the Issue Manager within thirty-five (35) calendar days after initiation of the PDP.

6. Public Notification of Initiation of the PDP and Comment Period

After initiation of the PDP, ICANN shall post a notification of such action to the Website and to the other ICANN Supporting Organisations and Advisory Committees. A comment period shall be commenced for the issue for a period of twenty (20) calendar days after initiation of the PDP. Comments will be accepted from ccTLD managers, other Supporting Organizations, Advisory Committees, and from the public. The Issue Manager, or some other designated representative of ICANN, shall review the comments and incorporate them into a report (the "Comment Report") to be included in either the Preliminary Task Force Report or the Initial Report, as applicable.

7. Task Forces

a. Role of Task Force. If a task force is created, its role will generally be to (i) gather information detailing the positions of the Regions; and (ii) otherwise obtain relevant information that will enable the Task Force Report to be as complete and informative as possible.

The task force shall not have any formal decision-making authority. Rather, the role of the task force shall be to gather information that will document the positions of various parties or groups as specifically and comprehensively as possible, thereby enabling the Council to have a meaningful and informed deliberation on the issue.

b. Task Force Charter or Terms of Reference. The Council, with the assistance of the Issue Manager, shall develop a charter or terms of reference for the task force (the "Charter") within ten (10) calendar days after initiation of the PDP. Such Charter will include:

1. the issue to be addressed by the task force, as such issue was articulated for the vote before the Council that commenced the PDP;

2. the specific timeline that the task force must adhere to, as set forth below, unless the Council determines that there is a compelling reason to extend the timeline; and

3. any specific instructions from the Council for the task force, including whether or not the task force should solicit the advice of outside advisors on the issue.
The task force shall prepare its report and otherwise conduct its activities in accordance with the Charter. Any request to deviate from the Charter must be formally presented to the Council and may only be undertaken by the task force upon a vote of a majority of the Council members present.

c. Appointment of Task Force Chair. The Issue Manager shall convene the first meeting of the task force within five (5) calendar days after receipt of the Charter. At the initial meeting, the task force members will, among other things, vote to appoint a task force chair. The chair shall be responsible for organizing the activities of the task force, including compiling the Task Force Report. The chair of a task force need not be a member of the Council.

d. Collection of Information.

1. Region Statements. The Representatives will each be responsible for soliciting the position of their Region, at a minimum, and other comments as each Representative deems appropriate, regarding the issue under consideration. This position and other comments, as applicable, should be submitted in a formal statement to the task force chair (each, a "Region Statement") within thirty-five (35) calendar days after initiation of the PDP. Every Region Statement shall include at least the following:

(i) If a Supermajority Vote was reached, a clear statement of the Regionís position on the issue;

(ii) If a Supermajority Vote was not reached, a clear statement of all positions espoused by Region members;

(iii) A clear statement of how the Region arrived at its position(s). Specifically, the statement should detail specific Region meetings, teleconferences, or other means of deliberating an issue, and a list of all members who participated or otherwise submitted their views;

(iv) An analysis of how the issue would affect the Region, including any financial impact on the Region; and

(v) An analysis of the period of time that would likely be necessary to implement the policy.

2. Outside Advisors. The task force, should it deem it appropriate or helpful, may solicit the opinions of outside advisors, experts, or other members of the public, in addition to those of constituency members. Such opinions should be set forth in a report prepared by such outside advisors, and (i) clearly labeled as coming from outside advisors; (ii) accompanied by a detailed statement of the advisors' (A) qualifications and relevant experience; and (B) potential conflicts of interest. These reports should be submitted in a formal statement to the task force chair within thirty-five (35) calendar days after initiation of the PDP.

e. Task Force Report. The chair of the task force, working with the Issue Manager, shall compile the Region Statements, Comment Report, and other information or reports, as applicable, into a single document ("Preliminary Task Force Report") and distribute the Preliminary Task Force Report to the full task force within forty (40) calendar days after initiation of the PDP. The task force shall have a final task force meeting within five (5) days after the date of distribution of the Preliminary Task Force Report to deliberate the issues and try and reach a Supermajority Vote. Within five (5) calendar days after the final task force meeting, the chair of the task force and the Issue Manager shall create the final task force report (the "Task Force Report") and post it on the Comment Site. Each Task Force Report must include:

1. A clear statement of any Supermajority Vote position of the task force on the issue;

2. If a Supermajority Vote was not reached, a clear statement of all positions espoused by task force members submitted within the twenty-day timeline for submission of constituency reports. Each statement should clearly indicate (i) the reasons underlying the position and (ii) the Region(s) that held the position;

3. An analysis of how the issue would affect each Region, including any financial impact on the Region;

4. An analysis of the period of time that would likely be necessary to implement the policy; and

5. The advice of any outside advisors appointed to the task force by the Council, accompanied by a detailed statement of the advisors' (i) qualifications and relevant experience; and (ii) potential conflicts of interest.

8. Procedure if No Task Force is Formed

a. If the Council decides not to convene a task force, the Council will request that, within ten (10) calendar days thereafter, each Region appoint a representative to solicit the Regionís views on the issue. Each such representative shall be asked to submit a Region Statement to the Issue Manager within thirty-five (35) calendar days after initiation of the PDP.

b. The Council may also pursue other options that it deems appropriate to assist in the PDP, including appointing a particular individual or organization to gather information on the issue or scheduling meetings for deliberation or briefing. All such information shall be submitted to the Issue Manager within thirty-five (35) calendar days after initiation of the PDP.

c. The Issue Manager will take all Region Statements, Comment Statements, and other information and compile (and post on the Comment Site) an Initial Report within fifty (50) calendar days after initiation of the PDP. Thereafter, the PDP shall follow the provisions of Item 9 below in creating a Final Report.

9. Comments to the Task Force Report or Initial Report

a. The comment period will last for twenty (20) calendar days after posting of the Task Force Report or Initial Report. Comments will be accepted from ccTLD Managers and from the public. All comments shall be accompanied by the name of the author of the comments, the author's relevant experience, and the author's interest in the issue.

b. At the end of the twenty (20) day period, the Issue Manager will be responsible for reviewing the comments received and adding those deemed appropriate for inclusion in the Issue Manager's reasonable discretion to the Task Force Report or Initial Report (collectively, the "Final Report"). The Issue Manager shall not be obligated to include all comments made during the comment period, including each comment made by any one individual or organization.

c. The Issue Manager shall prepare the Final Report and submit it to the Council chair within ten (10) calendar days after the end of the comment period.

10. Council Deliberation

a. Upon receipt of a Final Report, whether as the result of a task force or otherwise, the Council chair will (i) distribute the Final Report to all Council members; and (ii) call for a Council meeting within ten (10) calendar days thereafter. The Council may commence its deliberation on the issue prior to the formal meeting, including via in-person meetings, conference calls, e-mail discussions or any other means the Council may choose. The deliberation process shall culminate in a formal Council meeting either in person or via teleconference, wherein the Council will work towards achieving a Supermajority Vote to present to the Board.

b. The Council may, if it so chooses, solicit the opinions of outside advisors at its final meeting. The opinions of these advisors, if relied upon by the Council, shall be (i) embodied in the Council's report to the Board, (ii) specifically identified as coming from an outside advisor; and (iii) be accompanied by a detailed statement of the advisor's (a) qualifications and relevant experience; and (b) potential conflicts of interest.

11. Agreement of the Council

A Supermajority Vote of the Council members will be deemed to reflect the view of the Council, and may be conveyed to the Board as the Council's recommendation in the Board Report (outlined below). In such a vote, abstentions shall not be permitted unless a Council Member identifies a financial interest in the outcome of the policy issue. Notwithstanding the foregoing, as outlined below, all viewpoints expressed by Council members during the PDP must be included in the Board Report.

11. Council Report to the Board

The Issue Manager will be present at the final meeting of the Council, and will have five (5) calendar days after the meeting to incorporate the views of the Council into a report to be approved by the Council and then to be submitted to the Board (the "Board Report"). The Board Report must contain at least the following:

a. A clear statement of any Supermajority Vote recommendation of the Council;

b. If a Supermajority Vote was not reached, a clear statement of all positions held by Council members. Each statement should clearly indicate (i) the reasons underlying each position and (ii) the Region(s) that held the position;

c. An analysis of how the issue would affect each Region, including any financial impact on the Region;

d. An analysis of the period of time that would likely be necessary to implement the policy;

e. The advice of any outside advisors relied upon, which should be accompanied by a detailed statement of the advisor's (i) qualifications and relevant experience; and (ii) potential conflicts of interest;

f. The Final Report submitted to the Council; and

g. A copy of the minutes of the Council deliberation on the policy issue, including the all opinions expressed during such deliberation, accompanied by a description of who expressed such opinions.

13. Board Vote

a. The Board will meet to discuss the ccNSO Council recommendation as soon as feasible after receipt of the Board Report from the Issue Manager.

b. In the event that the Council reached a Supermajority Vote, the Board shall adopt the policy according to the Council Supermajority Vote recommendation unless by a vote of more than sixty-six (66%) percent the Board determines that such policy is not in the best interests of the ICANN community or ICANN.

1. In the event that the Board determines not to act in accordance with the Council Supermajority Vote recommendation, the Board shall (i) state the reasons for its determination not to act in accordance with the Vote in a report to the Council (the "Board Statement"); and (ii) submit the Board Statement to the Council.

2. The Council shall review the Board Statement for discussion with the Board within twenty (20) calendar days after the Council's receipt of the Board Statement. The Board shall determine the method (e.g., by teleconference, e-mail, or otherwise) by which the Council and Board will discuss the Board Statement. The discussions shall be held in good faith and in a timely and efficient manner, to find a mutually acceptable solution

3. At the conclusion of the Council and Board discussions, the Council shall meet to affirm or modify its recommendation, and communicate that conclusion (the "Supplemental Recommendation") to the Board, including an explanation for its current recommendation. In the event that the Council is able to reach a Supermajority Vote on the Supplemental Recommendation, the Board shall adopt the recommendation unless more than sixty-six (66%) percent of the Board determines that such policy is not in the interests of the ICANN community or ICANN.

4. In the event that the Board determines not to act in accordance with the Supermajority Vote on the Supplemental Recommendation then the Board will state in its final decision the reasons for its determination not to act in accordance with the Vote

c. In any case in which the Council is not able to reach Supermajority, but is able to reach a Majority then the Board shall adopt the policy according to the Council Majority Vote recommendation unless by a vote of more than fifty (50%) percent the Board determines that such policy is not in the best interests of the ICANN community or ICANN.

14. Implementation of the Policy

Upon a final decision of the Board, the Board shall, as appropriate, give authorization or direction to the ICANN staff to take all necessary steps to implement the policy.

15. Maintenance of Records

Throughout the PDP, from policy suggestion to a final decision by the Board, ICANN will maintain on the Website, a status web page detailing the progress of each PDP issue, which will describe:

a. The initial suggestion for a policy;

b. A list of all suggestions that do not result in the creation of an Issue Report;

c. The timeline to be followed for each policy;

d. All discussions among the Council regarding the policy;

e. All reports from task forces, the Issue Manager, the Council and the Board; and

f. All public comments submitted.

Click here to read comments on this preliminary recommendation.


Comments concerning the layout, construction and functionality of this site
should be sent to webmaster@icann.org.

Page updated 20-Aug-2003
©2002 The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers. All rights reserved.