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[council] Summary of meeting - Sunday morning 18 July 2004 in Kuala Lumpur to discuss ICANN staff/GNSO interaction

  • To: "Philip Sheppard" <philip.sheppard@xxxxxx>, <paul.verhoef@xxxxxxxxx>, "Kurt Pritz" <pritz@xxxxxxxxx>, <twomey@xxxxxxxxx>, "Neuman, Jeff" <Jeff.Neuman@xxxxxxxxxx>, "Cade,Marilyn S - LGCRP" <mcade@xxxxxxx>, <kstubbs@xxxxxxxxxxxx>, "Ross Wm. Rader" <ross@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • Subject: [council] Summary of meeting - Sunday morning 18 July 2004 in Kuala Lumpur to discuss ICANN staff/GNSO interaction
  • From: "Bruce Tonkin" <Bruce.Tonkin@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sun, 18 Jul 2004 20:09:25 +1000
  • Cc: <council@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Sender: owner-council@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Thread-index: AcRfDTQ/3pkv7hUwS0u0Wv28aslQTwA30R7QABv4MeAArzbBsAAIbZdQAACVLkAAVY7/AAAJZbPwAfyumNA=
  • Thread-topic: Summary of meeting - Sunday morning 18 July 2004 in Kuala Lumpur to discuss ICANN staff/GNSO interaction

Hello All,

Here are my notes from the meeting this morning.

There were three main topics discussed:
- policy development process
- end-to-end project management to deliver outcomes to the ICANN
- ICANN staff resource management

(1) Policy development process

A document needs to be created as a manual for participants in the
policy process.
Chairs of task forces or Council should ideally have experience within
the GNSO policy development process prior to becoming chairs.

The role of a task force or council member is to work as a member of the
team to create a new consensus policy.  The member should bring their
expertise from their relevant constituency, but should work to
understand the positions of the other constituencies and identify
compromises that lead to an overall improvement for the ICANN community
as-a-whole (rather than just the specific constituency).  The overall
duty of a task force or Council member is to the ICANN community

The role of the chair is to manage the policy development process and
ensure that all members of the committee can contribute using their
particular skills and expertise.   Currently there is a heacvy reliance
on chairs to do much of the editing of reports and analysis of public
comments or constituency positions.  The aim with the additonal ICANN
budget is to reduce the reliance on the chairs, and encourage people
expeirneced in the GNSO policy process to take on the role of chair.

The role of the staff support person is as described in:
- Liaise with the Chair and members of the GNSO Council to conduct
background research, data gathering and data analysis of current issues
of importance to the Council 
- Assist with the formation of a Task Force or Sub-Committee and provide
guidance to those participating in the policy development processes on
relevant steps and timelines (as set out in the bylaws) 
- As part of the policy development processes, assist the GNSO Council
and eventual Task Forces or Sub-committees in the management of their
tasks, drafting and producing reports, posting and evaluating public
comments, as well as related activities, such as coordination and
incorporation of reports from outside advisors 
- Attend meetings of the Council, Task Forces and/or Sub-committees
(mostly by teleconference and including outside office hours) 
- Provide other assistance to the GNSO Council as may be needed to
ensure the smooth running of the policy processes 
- Where relevant, prepare reports and other materials to the ICANN Board

The meeting noted that it would be useful for staff support personnel to
have a thorough understanding og the ICANN bylaws with respect to policy
development, and assist the chair with the process steps necessary to
comply with the policy development process.

Note although the staff support person is intended to assist in the
editing of reports, members must work to contribute the raw material
that allows the report to be created using their specific areas of
expertise.   A report cannot be created in a vacuum.

(2) Project management

The ICANN community currently has 3 policies in the implementation phase
that were approved early in 2003:
- transfers
- deletes

The implementations of these policies are not complete.

The ICANN community currently has 3 issues in the policy development
- next improvement of WHOIS (broken up into 3 components)
- approval process for gtld registry service changes
- .net criteria

We need to work collectively to establish a project management framework
that sets out the steps from issues report, through to policy, through
to implementation, through to measurement of outcomes, through to review
of policy - and re-start the process.

We should be able to report on the projects as a whole to the ICANN
community with clear indivations of status and estimated dates for
project deliverables.   

It was recognised that the bylaws specify a set of dates for all issues,
when in fact some issues (such as WHOIS) are far more complex and more
contentious than other issues (e.g redemption grace period).

To encourage participation and build confidence in ICANN we need to work
to make incremental improvements to the main policy areas each year,
rather than trying for years to form an ideal policy, and then
struggling for years to implement that policy.   This needs better
project management.

(3) ICANN staff resource management

In the past there were a few ICANN staff members that were required out
of necessity to do everything.

With ICANN's new budget there will be additional staff resources

It is important for ICANN staff to work with the GNSO Council to create
a view of the current staff resource allocations across the projects.
Projects at different stages will need different skill sets.  For
example during the policy implementation stage, legal changes may need
to be made to registry or registrar agreements.   During the policy
development stage, legal advice on the current obligations of the
contracts may be required.

It would be useful for the chairs to have a weekly view of staff (or
outside consultants) allocations across the projects, and what work is
underway.  This will assist us all in planning and understanding where
there are resource shortfalls.   An understanding of resource
allocations will also assist in setting more realistic timelines for
specific projects underway.

Bruce Tonkin

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