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President's Corner: Catching up with Stakeholders

11 April 2017
By Göran Marby

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It was great to see so many of you in person during ICANN58 in Copenhagen. With more than 2,500 registered attendees, and more than 300 sessions, we were all very busy, and I thank you all for your hard work and focus. I also want to thank our generous hosts from Copenhagen’s business and government communities, who helped make the meeting possible. We released the ICANN58 survey results last week, as well as the Post-ICANN 58 Policy Report, if you want to read up on what took place during the meeting. And if you haven’t had a chance, I highly encourage you to read the ICANN Org Report to the Board that we prepared before the meeting.

We’ve been busy working through our FY18 planning and reviewing the public comments for the budget as they come in. That public comment period is closing on 28 April, so if you are interested in submitting comments, please make sure you do so before then.

I recently attended World Hosting Days (WHD), an annual industry event, which was held in Germany this year. I met with many stakeholders and visited the WHD exhibition, where many ICANN contracted parties and stakeholders had booths showcasing their latest innovations and offerings. While there, I participated in a Q&A session where we touched on the importance of ICANN’s work to the operations and business future for hosting companies, and discussed subjects ranging from IPv6 to the KSK Rollover.

I also got to take part in one of the world’s leading and fastest-growing civil society-led conferences, RightsCon. Outside of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF), RightsCon is the largest gathering of civil society stakeholders that are active in Internet issues. I joined a panel titled “Taking Forward the Multistakeholder Debate,” that featured an excellent discussion about where and how multistakeholder approaches can be applied, with frequent reference to ICANN’s model, including our successes, challenges and desire for continuous improvement.

The ICANN community was well represented at RightsCon. The Non-Commercial Users Constituency (NCUC) sponsored their own panel on domain industry developments. Members of At-Large, ICANN fellows, the Regional Internet Registries (RIRs), the Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC) and numerous business stakeholders – including major Internet companies and Internet Service Providers – were all well represented. At ICANN’s booth, community members and staff kept busy, engaging and interacting all throughout the conference. We held an informal meet-up with ICANN stakeholders, making use of the comfortable bean bag chairs and enjoying the informal setting; for me, this was a highlight.

I also had the pleasure of meeting with members of the American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN) at ARIN39 and the North American Regional At Large Organization (NARALO) while in New Orleans last week. It was very rewarding for me to interact with these two key community groups and participate in brainstorms, sessions and Q&As.

2017 has been a busy year for me, as I strive to meet and work with members of the multistakeholder community all around the world. In the next few months, I will be in Beijing meeting with members of the multistakeholder community, at a Board workshop in Geneva, the Global Domains Division (GDD) Summit in Madrid, and soon after to a regional RIR meeting with LACNIC in Iguazu Falls, Brazil. And of course, I hope to see many of you, whether in person or remotely, participating at ICANN59 in Johannesburg, South Africa.


Göran Marby

Göran Marby

Former President & CEO