Welcome to ICANN63
¡Bienvenidos! Welcome to ICANN63 – our Annual General Meeting – in Barcelona, Spain. There’s quite a lot taking place this week, between the Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC)’s High Level Government Meeting, celebrations for ICANN’s 20th anniversary, an impressive number of sessions, and more.
ICANN’s multistakeholder community continues to expand, with more and more people joining from all over the globe. These meetings are an excellent opportunity for our diverse group of stakeholders to interact face-to-face and strengthen relationships that have been forged over email, phone bridges, and various collaboration tools. Building these productive working relationships are all the more important as we look for solutions to some of the most critical issues impacting us, whether it be the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the future of new generic top-level domain (gTLD) auction proceeds, or the evolving needs of the Internet’s end-users.
For many of you, ICANN63 is not your first meeting. Some of you have a collection of lanyards that stretch back well into the early days of ICANN’s Public Meetings. But whether you’re a veteran or a newcomer, I encourage you to look at the meeting schedule and identify at least one session that is outside of the norm for you to attend. Having your voice and perspective heard is an important part of preserving the diversity that strengthens our community, and you might be surprised by just how much you have to learn and contribute.
During the past few meetings, the ICANN org’s Executive Team has held an open question and answer session. For ICANN63, we’re going to be replacing that session with one exclusively focused on the FY20 budget. I invite you to join me and the rest of the Executive Team on Wednesday, 24 October, from 17:00-18:00, to ask a question or make a comment related to the budget development process. We will share an overview of our budget, and we need your feedback to help us identify what projects and tasks to prioritize.
I also invite you to download the latest ICANN CEO Report to the Board, which was published just before the Genval Board Workshop in Belgium. These reports are an excellent way of understanding what the ICANN org is currently working on and will provide you with a wealth of insight before the meeting starts. I also recommend reading ICANN Board Chair Cherine Chalaby’s preview of the Barcelona Board Workshop which concluded today.
This is the first ICANN Public Meeting in Spain, and we are pleased to be here to celebrate and look back on twenty years of ICANN. Over the past two decades, ICANN and its global community has evolved and grown into a trusted leader within the Internet’s governance ecosystem. Please join us on Thursday for the Community Recognition ceremony. It’s a chance to say thank you to some of our most dedicated community members.
This meeting is an important opportunity to reflect on not only the successes, but the challenges you’ve worked together to overcome. Please make sure to join us on Thursday, 25 October, from 17:00-18:00 for ICANN@20 Years, where we’ll be taking a trip down memory lane to remember some of the key moments in ICANN’s history.
As always, my team and I will be on the ground to support your efforts and work. Please don’t hesitate to either reach out to me or the rest of the Executive Team with any questions or stop one of us in the hallways to say hello. I wish you all a productive meeting.