GNSO Review 2014

Last Updated: 30 July 2014

Introduction

Review of Generic Names Supporting Organization (GNSO) The objective of the Review is to examine organizational effectiveness of the GNSO, including its structure components (GNSO Council, GNSO Working Groups, GNSO Stakeholder Groups and Constituencies). The review will be tightly scoped based on objective and quantifiable criteria provided to the independent examiner.

The work methods are expected to include the examination of documentation, records and reports; outcomes from the 360 Assessment; and limited interviews. The 360 Assessment is an online mechanism to collect and summarize feedback from members of the GNSO community ‹ a self-review relative to objective and quantifiable criteria. Interested members of other ICANN organizations, Board and staff also may offer feedback. Relevant assessments of the Second Accountability and Transparency Review Team 1 regarding the GNSOpolicy development process will be factored into the review.

GNSO and community participation Involvement of the GNSO community as well as input and participation from the broader community are important components of this review process.

As discussed in GNSO Council meetings, the Structural Improvements Committee (SIC) is requesting that aGNSO Review Working Party be assembled to function as a liaison between the GNSO, the independent examiner and the SIC, to provide input on review criteria and the 360 Assessment, coordinate interviews and objectively supply clarification and responses to the draft findings and recommendations. Once a final report is issued and the Board takes action on it, as appropriate, the GNSO Review Working Party is expected to coordinate with the GNSO community to prepare an Implementation Plan and champion implementation of improvement activities. More information about this will be provided shortly.

Latest development

For all latest developments please see the 2014 GNSO Review wikipage, where you will also find a FAQ in all six UN languages.

Webinar

An introductory webinar on the GNSO Review and its envisaged process took place on 7 May 2014. All webinar materials are available online:

Background

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers ("ICANN") is seeking a provider to conduct an independent review of the Generic Names Supporting Organization (GNSO), as mandated by ICANN's Bylaws.

As part of ICANN's ongoing commitment to its evolution and improvement, Article IV ­ Section 4 of ICANN's Bylaws contains provisions for "periodic review of the performance and operation of each Supporting Organization, each Supporting Organization Council, each Advisory Committee (other than the Governmental Advisory Committee), and the Nominating Committee."

These periodic reviews present ICANN structures with opportunities for continuous improvement through consistent application of compliance review principles to objectively measure performance relative to specific and quantifiable criteria developed by ICANN based on the unique nature of its structures. The resulting implementation of improvements and the systematic means of measuring performance and validating effectiveness of implementation are of utmost importance to the ongoing legitimacy of ICANN.

The GNSO is the policy-making body responsible for generic top-level domains, such as .COM, .NET, and .ORG. Its members include representatives from generic Top Level Domains (gTLD) registries, gTLD registrars, intellectual property interest, Internet service providers, businesses and non-commercial interests. The GNSOstrives to keep gTLDs operating in a fair, orderly fashion across one global Internet, while promoting innovation and competition.

Given the significant increases in the number and nature of the generic Top Level Domains resulting from the recent launch of the New gTLD Program, the upcoming review of the GNSO is of critical importance to theICANN community.

ICANN is planning to start the review on 1 July 2014, with an anticipated duration of 6 months, and is seeking qualified providers to conduct the review in a timely and efficient manner.

For additional information and instructions for submitting responses please see http://www.icann.org/en/news/rfps/rfp-gnso-review-22apr14-en.zip [ZIP, 672 KB].