ICANN58 is soon coming to a close. Copenhagen has been a beautiful backdrop for a productive meeting. We've all appreciated the natural light, open spaces and greenery of the Bella Center.
Before we know it, it will be time for the ICANN59 Policy Forum. South Africa is welcoming the world again after hosting ICANN Public Meetings twice before – ICANN21 in Capetown in 2004 and ICANN47 in Durban in 2013. This time, the host city will be Johannesburg. ICANN59 will take place from 26–29 June 2017 at the Sandton Convention Centre. The venue is just off Nelson Mandela Square, where you’ll find a statue of the renowned human rights leader and former President of South Africa measuring nearly 6 meters (almost 20 feet) tall.
So, what can you expect of the ICANN59 Policy Forum? First, the meeting is shorter – just four days. You’ll find fewer competing sessions, and you’ll attend smaller sessions where you’ll have more opportunity to interact with other community members. And you’ll have more time to discuss policy initiatives and learn what other consitutuencies are doing, which will help you make more informed decisions.
Johannesburg, which locals affectionately call Joburg, Jozi and eGoli (“City of Gold” in Zulu) – is the largest city in South Africa and the capital of the wealthiest province, Gauteng. This relatively young city emerged from the Gold Rush just over 130 years ago, but if you travel only 30 miles (50 kilometers), you’ll discover a different story. World Heritage-protected fossil sites provide rich archaeological evidence of early humans occupying the region between 2.5 and 4.5 million years ago.
If you come to ICANN59, I think you’ll find that Johannesburg is friendly and unpretentious. It has something for everyone – archaeology, nature, nightlife, modern architecture, art, open-air markets, cultural activities. And uniquely South African getaways are awaiting you on the outskirts of Joburg. Take your pick!
Registration for ICANN59 is now open. See you in Joburg!