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Minutes | Board Organizational Effectiveness Committee (OEC) Meeting

OEC Attendees: Avri Doria – Chair, Alan Barrett, Akinori Maemura, Katrina Sataki and Matthew Shears

OEC Apologies: Patricio Poblete

Other Board Member Attendee: Manal Ismail

Executive and Staff Attendees: Franco Carrasco (Board Operations Specialist), Steve Conte (Director, IROS Operations), Negar Farzinnia (Director, Implementation Operations), Larisa Gurnick (VP, Review Support & Accountability), Alice Jansen (Implementation Operations Senior Manager), Jason Kean (Project Manager, Review Support & Accountability), Becky Nash ((VP, Planning), Wendy Profit (Board Operations Senior Manager), Laena Rahim (Regional Counsel, APAC), Giovanni Seppia (VP, Implementation Operations) and Pamela Smith (Senior Coordinator, Review Support & Accountability), Theresa Swinehart (SVP, Global Domains and Strategy) and Mary Wong (VP, Strategic Community Operations, Planning and Engagement).


The following is a summary of discussions, decisions, and actions identified:

The Meeting was called to order at 14:00 UTC.

  1. Agenda – The Chair established the agenda for the meeting and gave an overview of items to be discussed. 
  2. Review of Open Action Items and Watched Action Items – The OEC noted that several "Open Action Items" will be discussed at the next OEC meeting in July 2022, and there are also other action items which will require more time to complete.

    In relation to Recommendation 10 (Rebalancing of the Nominating Committee) from the second organizational review of the Nominating Committee, the Nominating Committee Review Implementation Working Group (NomCom RIWG) has withdrawn this proposal as significantly more time needs to be devoted to this issue at a broader community level to address the representational issues raised by this recommendation. The Chair reiterated that the OEC will address this item at its future meeting on how to formally "conclude" this recommendation.

    • Action Item:

      • ICANN organization to circulate the OEC's workplan and semi-annual activities report, highlighting the relevant projects and upcoming milestones that are coming up for OEC action and Board action between now and ICANN75, for the OEC's ease of reference. 
  3. Update on the Pilot Holistic Review – The OEC continued its discussion on this topic. ICANN org updated the OEC on the following:

    1. Overview of the Pilot Holistic Review Draft Terms of Reference (ToR) – The Pilot Holistic Review Terms of Reference (ToR) Team (comprising members from the OEC and former members of the ATRT3) has delivered the Draft ToR. ICANN org circulated the Draft ToR to the OEC on 16 June 2022, seeking the OEC's additional input before the Draft ToR is published for public comment. ICANN org provided a brief overview of the key sections of the Draft ToR. Part of the OEC's conversation focused on Objective C(d), which states:

      "Review SO/AC/NomCom as a whole to determine if they continue to have a purpose in the ICANN structure as they are currently constituted or if any changes in structures and operations are desirable to improve the overall effectiveness of ICANN as well as ensure optimal representation of community views (but taking into consideration any impacts on the Board or the Empowered Community)." This will be addressed within the Holistic Review Program by the following proposed Pilot Holistic Review steps:… d. Consider what impact, if any, the ongoing work on enhancing the effectiveness of the multistakeholder model has on this work area."

      The OEC commented that the work that will be carried out by the Pilot Holistic Review Team across Objective C is likely to have a significant impact on the ongoing work on the project on enhancing the effectiveness of the multistakeholder model. Thus, the OEC discussed the possibility of including a report on the impact of the evolution of the multistakeholder model on the ATRT3 objectives as a common deliverable for Objective C.

      Additionally, the OEC further remarked that Objective C focuses on the structures and operations of the SO/ACs and NomCom, rather than the processes and/or procedures; and that the effectiveness of the multistakeholder model should also include an assessment of the effectiveness and efficiency of the processes and/or procedures relating to the SO/ACs and NomCom. The OEC conveyed its overall concern that a one-way approach of assessing the broader issue of the evolution of the multistakeholder model may not be advantageous to the ongoing work on enhancing the effectiveness of the multistakeholder model; and thus this is an area which the Board will take note of when the Pilot Holistic Review takes place.

      ICANN org highlighted that the Draft ToR contains guiding principles on the scope and approach to the work to be undertaken, and it contains explicit sections relating to engagement and interaction among the Pilot Holistic Review Team, the community, the Board and ICANN org. The Draft ToR ensures that there are consistent checkpoints between the Pilot Holistic Review Team and the SO/ACs and NomCom. For instance, SO/ACs and NomCom should be openly and transparently engaged to ensure their input on findings is considered, especially as it relates to their unique operations, processes and procedures. 

      In terms of the approach to work, the Draft ToR also states that pursuant to the public comment proceeding, the revised draft report should be shared with the SO/AC leadership for their review prior to sending the final report to the Board. The Pilot Review Team will work to address any significant SO/AC leadership concerns in a timely manner. Such engagement and interaction with the SO/ACs and NomCom will help flag potential issues with recommendations, before they are finalized and included in the final report. 

    2. Next Steps– ICANN org briefed the OEC on the proposed next steps in relation to the Pilot Holistic Review Draft ToR:

      29 June 2022

      • OEC provides input on the Draft ToR and directs ICANN org to initiate a public comment proceeding.
      • Outreach to the SO/ACs – similar process that is outlined in the Draft ToR to ensure that the SO/ACs are given the opportunity to review and provide input.

      July 2022

      OEC/Board communication to raise community awareness on the Draft ToR development process.

      August – September 2022

      Public comment proceeding.

      October 2022

      Analysis of comments and OEC to consider public comment received and the way forward.

      The OEC members expressed their support and agreement that the Pilot Holistic Review Draft ToR is ready to be published for public comment proceeding and directed ICANN org to proceed with the next steps.

      • Action Items:

        • ICANN org to prepare for public comment proceeding to start in August 2022.
        • ICANN org to draft a communication and engagement plan to increase community awareness and understanding of the Pilot Holistic Review ToR and subsequent steps toward a Pilot Holistic Review.
        • ICANN org to coordinate with the Board Governance Committee (BGC) on the appointment of Board-appointed Pilot Holistic Review Team member/liaison.

      The OEC will continue its discussion on this topic at its future meetings, and ICANN org will keep the OEC abreast of further developments.

  4. Update on Prioritized Specific Reviews Recommendations – ICANN org provided a comprehensive update to the OEC on the progress and timelines of the ongoing work for the implementation of prioritized Specific Review recommendations.

    The pilot Planning Prioritization Framework project was conducted by the community group in April – May 2022 which resulted in assigning priority levels to 45 Board-approved recommendations (or components thereof) from Specific Reviews. 

    ICANN org provided a brief overview of the progress of Specific Review recommendations for the third Accountability and Transparency Review (ATRT3), the Competition, Consumer Trust and Consumer Choice Review (CCT), Registration Directory Service Review (RDS/WHOIS2) and the second review of the Security, Stability and Resiliency of the DNS (SSR2).

    ICANN org reported that an internal action plan was launched after the conclusion of the prioritization pilot through a new dedicated ICANN org Cross-Functional Project Team, which will focus on three pillars:

    Pillar 1

    Design and deliver implementation using prioritization proposed by the community as input.

    Pillar 2

    Document implementation.

    Pillar 3

    Monitor and resolve, where possible, dependencies that made Board approved recommendations ineligible for prioritization. Responding to a query from the OEC, ICANN org clarified that in the event that there is community work that may impact some of the dependencies, such work will be taken into consideration when assessing the recommendations, etc.

    Whilst priority is being given to P1 and P2 recommendations, ICANN org underscored that there is commitment within ICANN org to address as many of the 45 prioritized recommendations as possible by the end of FY23 (if not earlier).

    Upon being briefed by ICANN org, the OEC commended ICANN org for the progress made thus far and the significant work and effort involved towards the implementation of prioritized Specific Reviews recommendations.

    The Chair called the meeting to a close.

Published on 1 August 2022

Domain Name System
Internationalized Domain Name ,IDN,"IDNs are domain names that include characters used in the local representation of languages that are not written with the twenty-six letters of the basic Latin alphabet ""a-z"". An IDN can contain Latin letters with diacritical marks, as required by many European languages, or may consist of characters from non-Latin scripts such as Arabic or Chinese. Many languages also use other types of digits than the European ""0-9"". The basic Latin alphabet together with the European-Arabic digits are, for the purpose of domain names, termed ""ASCII characters"" (ASCII = American Standard Code for Information Interchange). These are also included in the broader range of ""Unicode characters"" that provides the basis for IDNs. The ""hostname rule"" requires that all domain names of the type under consideration here are stored in the DNS using only the ASCII characters listed above, with the one further addition of the hyphen ""-"". The Unicode form of an IDN therefore requires special encoding before it is entered into the DNS. The following terminology is used when distinguishing between these forms: A domain name consists of a series of ""labels"" (separated by ""dots""). The ASCII form of an IDN label is termed an ""A-label"". All operations defined in the DNS protocol use A-labels exclusively. The Unicode form, which a user expects to be displayed, is termed a ""U-label"". The difference may be illustrated with the Hindi word for ""test"" — परीका — appearing here as a U-label would (in the Devanagari script). A special form of ""ASCII compatible encoding"" (abbreviated ACE) is applied to this to produce the corresponding A-label: xn--11b5bs1di. A domain name that only includes ASCII letters, digits, and hyphens is termed an ""LDH label"". Although the definitions of A-labels and LDH-labels overlap, a name consisting exclusively of LDH labels, such as""icann.org"" is not an IDN."