Read ICANN Blogs to stay informed of the latest policymaking activities, regional events, and more.

Monthly Update by Theresa Swinehart

18 December 2014

In addition to the U.N. six languages, this content is also available in


It's hard to believe that 2014 is already coming to a close. This past year has been monumental towards validating the strength of the multistakeholder model, the true test beginning on March 14 with the announcement by NTIA of its intention to transition its stewardship of the IANA functions. Now at year's end, I am very pleased with the effort the community has made to inform and develop two global processes to achieve a successful transition.

To provide a broader picture of the groups involved in each process, we designed an infographic showing the interrelation of the two processes and the flow of proposals from each. Please take time to review it.

Chart depicting the Interrelation between the Iana Stewardship Transition and Enhancing ICANN Accountabilty Processes

Download here: https://www.icann.org/en/system/files/files/iana-stewardship-accountability-12dec14-en.pdf [PDF, 906 KB]

Another great resource that has surfaced is a slide deck published by NTIA [PDF, 180 KB] that describes its current Administrator role in the Root Zone management. To help inform transition discussions, the resource reiterates the "clerical and administrative" role that NTIA holds in its oversight of the IANA functions.

IANA Stewardship Transition

Three operational communities are in the homestretch towards meeting the January 15 target deadline to respond to the ICG Request for Transition Proposals [PDF, 84 KB].

The Names community Cross Community Working Group (CWG) met in Frankfurt at the end of November, where constituent parts of the RFP were further developed. The work of each sub-section was coordinated into a preliminary draft transition proposal [PDF, 1.72 MB], which is currently up for public comment through  December 22. Given the progress, the CWG has stated with reasonable optimism that its proposal would be finished sufficiently close to the ICG's target deadline.

Each of the five Regional Internet Registries communities has been discussing transition proposals [PDF, 68 KB] at RIR meetings, via mailing lists and through other forums. Each community has selected three members to participate on a Consolidated RIR IANA Stewardship Proposal Team (CRISP Team) to coordinate a single proposal to submit to the ICG. The CRISP Team acknowledged minor differences among the proposals outlined by each RIR, but has since collaborated on accommodating these differences and is in the final stages of developing a draft proposal [PDF, 173 KB], which should be published within the next few days.

Then following discussions at IETF 91 and through its public mailing list, the chairs of the IANAPLAN WG representing the protocol parameters community concluded that the working group had reached sufficient consensus on a draft proposal to move forward with a broader review. The draft proposal underwent an IETF-wide last call review through mid-December, and is now in the hands of the Internet Engineering Steering Group (IESG) for approval.

Enhancing ICANN Accountability

The CCWG-Accountability charter has been adopted by the GNSO, ALAC, ccNSO, GAC and ASO, and the working group currently totals 150 with 26 members and 124 participants plus 30 mailing list observers. Co-chaired by Mathieu Weill (ccNSO) and Thomas Rickert (GNSO Council), the group has met twice already and will be meeting every Tuesday until ICANN 52 in Singapore. The working group will also be holding one face-to-face meeting in Frankfurt on 19-20 January.

Here is the CCWG-Accountability's estimated timeline for completing its work:

Estimated Timeline of the CCWG-Accountability Process for 2015

In addition to the timeline, the CCWG has designated four sub-committees for organizing the vast amount of research necessary to complete its work. Each work area has designated a Coordinator, and members and participants are currently volunteering to assist with the work. The four areas are:

  • Work Area 1: Review existing accountability mechanisms (including ATRT 1 & ATRT 2 recommendations)
  • Work Area 2: Review input from the previous public comment period and categorize items into Work Stream 1 and Work Stream 2
  • Work Area 3: Review issues identified by the CWG-Stewardship
  • Work Area 4: Identify contingencies (especially in relation to Work Stream 1)

I am very pleased to see that the group has developed effective working methods and has become comfortable with the charter over a very short period of time. This perseverance has enabled the group to work promptly and cohesively and has put them on track for the timely development of accountability recommendations for both Work Stream 1 and Work Stream 2.

Lastly, the Public Experts Group (PEG) has announced its selection of Advisors to the CCWG. These Advisors will contribute research and advice to the working group, and will bring perspectives on global best practices on various topics ranging from Board Governance and Corporate Management to Global Ethics Frameworks and Human Rights. It is hoped that this external expertise will enrich the discussions of the working group and help to attain the level of accountability necessary for the transition.

We encourage the community to stay informed and get involved in the various discussions on each process. On behalf of ICANN and its community, I want to extend my appreciation and gratitude to all of the volunteers who will be working on these two processes through the upcoming holiday season.

In the meantime, continue to check the ICANN website, follow ICANN on Twitter, or like ICANN on Facebook, and for quick access to all recent developments on both processes visit the transition homepage here: https://www.icann.org/stewardship-accountability.

Happy holidays!

– TS


Theresa Swinehart

Theresa Swinehart

SVP, Global Domains & Strategy