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ICANN SubPro ODP Update: Highlighting the Project Governance Work Track

28 February 2022

In my last blog, I shared the approach we are using to conduct the New Generic Top-Level Domain (gTLD) Subsequent Procedures (SubPro) Policy Development Process (PDP) Operational Design Phase (ODP), including an overview of the nine work tracks that we've organized the work into. Today's blog focuses on Work Track 1 – Project Governance.

The Project Governance work track is designed to oversee and manage the project, including the ODP itself. The activities in this work track form the umbrella under which all the work is conducted. Currently, we estimate 60 unique projects within the ICANN organization (org) to develop the Operational Design Assessment. Project Governance involves coordinating the activities of all work tracks to provide the required tools, resources, guidance, and consistency. Coordination of activities, strategy, status reporting, management of project assumptions, and overall risk assessment are key areas of focus to ensure each of the work tracks is managed effectively and the outputs are analyzed appropriately.

The SubPro PDP ODP is a major effort, consisting of synthesizing the more than 300 outputs (affirmations, recommendations, and implementation guidance) from the Final Report and the experience of policies, processes, and procedures from the 2012 application round.

A robust Project Governance structure is especially important in a project such as this because of the cross-functional nature of the work. Once the work tracks assess each Final Report output and develop their proposed approach, the work track leads will review and identify interdependencies, issues, and potential risks. Work Track 1 is responsible for supporting each of the work tracks in setting up the cross-functional teams that will perform these tasks. Project Governance ensures that all the aspects of the project are aligned and working together.

The Project Governance work track is made up of a dedicated project management team, consisting of members from key functions within the org. Team members also regularly share information and interface with the SubPro Board Caucus, and the SubPro PDP ODP Generic Names Supporting Organization Council Liaison.

We'll continue to highlight each of the work tracks in future blogs. Please remember to register to join us at the ICANN73 Virtual Community Forum, taking place 7–10 March, for an update on the New gTLD SubPro PDP ODP. You can also find information on the New gTLD SubPro PDP ODP webpage, and if you wish to ask questions, email subpro-odp@icann.org.


Karen Lentz

Karen Lentz

VP Policy Research & Stakeholder Programs