ICANN: CWG-Stewardship Chairs’ Statement – Summary of ICANN 52 Meeting | Lise Fuhr & Jonathan Robinson

The Cross Community Working Group (CWG) on Naming Related Functions held two sessions at the ICANN 52 Meeting in Singapore (8-12 February 2015): a two-hour working session on Wednesday, and a questions and answers session on Thursday.
In addition to these sessions, there was participation in sessions hosted by many other groups across the ICANN community, as well as many rewarding conversations and engagements throughout the week on behalf of the co-Chairs, the members and their chartering organizations, the individual participants of the CWG-Stewardship, and the broader multistakeholder community.1

Summary of ICANN 52 Meeting

The Wednesday working session focused primarily on reviewing and refining the CWG-Stewardship’s working methods. These revisions dedicate the group to working in a committee of the whole moving forward, meeting at minimum once per week and, and building out the converging areas of the Proposal towards developing a final Proposal. As needed, the CWG-Stewardship will funnel specific subjects through expertise-based Task Forces. Task Forces will serve the purpose of developing specific aspects of the Proposal as well as demonstrating incremental progress. Drafts from Task Forces will be brought to the group for review and decision making on inclusion within the draft proposal.

The Thursday questions and answers session was focused on receiving community feedback. In preparation for the ICANN 52 Meeting, the CWG-Stewardship created a Discussion Document [PDF, 447 KB] that attempted to capture and summarize the considerable progress made by this group to date and to encourage community input on key and intractable issues that were addressed in detail on Thursday.

The CWG-Stewardship appreciates the high-quality comments and responses received, and expects to devote time in its next meeting on 19 February 2015 to further assess the feedback received. The group remains open to feedback on the specific questions on the Discussion Document, and requests that feedback before the 19 February meeting. Feedback can be provided through a CWG-Stewardship member or participant, or to the support staff (grace.abuhamad@icann.org) for transmission to the group.

Looking Ahead

The ICANN 52 meeting maintained much needed focus on the work related to the IANA Stewardship Transition and Enhancing ICANN Accountability. Throughout the meeting the co-Chairs, the members and their chartering organizations, the individual participants of the CWG-Stewardship, and the broader community all dedicated their time to constructive feedback and progress. With the sustained support of the community, the CWG-Stewardship commits to continuing to work at a high-intensity and pace. The group will remain regularly engaged with the community and any interested observers in order to provide updates on its work as well as related elements such as receipt of legal advice, as it did during the Webinars on 3 February.

Coordination with CCWG-Accountability

As agreed to in their Joint Statement on 28 January 2015, the Chairs of both the CWG-Stewardship and the CCWG-Accountability committed to attending and participating in each other’s sessions at ICANN 52. The CWG-Stewardship recognizes that, wherever possible and appropriate, the group will take advantage of the efforts of the CCWG-Accountability to avoid duplication or overlaps in the work to be done. With this robust coordination, the co-Chairs are assured of the effective progress of the CWG-Stewardship.

Work to Date

The CWG-Stewardship began its work in October 2014, with regular weekly virtual meetings and a working meeting at ICANN 51 in Los Angeles, California. In addition to ICANN supported regular weekly CWG-Stewardship virtual meetings, and at the request of the Chairs, ICANN agreed to support a two-full-day face-to-face meeting in Frankfurt, Germany on 19-20 November 2014 to advance the work of the group.

On 1 December, the CWG-Stewardship published its draft proposal for a 21-day public comment period. Following the publication of the draft proposal [PDF, 1.7 MB], between 4 – 6 December, the CWG hosted three public webinars to present the draft proposal and engage with the broader community.

At the conclusion of the public comment, the CWG-Stewardship dedicated its time to full review and analysis of the feedback received, in particular during an intensive work weekend on 10-11 January. As part of the outcome, the group began to study a series of alternative models that had not yet been fully considered. These models were presented in two public webinars on 3 February and in a Discussion Document [PDF, 447 KB] that was released for discussion at ICANN 52 in Singapore.

The next CWG-Stewardship working meeting is scheduled for 19 February from 11:00-13:00 UTC.

There are plans for another face to face meeting on 25 – 27 March 2015.


The CWG consists 138 people, organized as 19 members, appointed by and accountable to chartering organizations, and 119 participants, who participate as individuals. The CWG is an open group: anyone interested in the work of the CWG, can join as a participant. Participants may be from a chartering organization, from a stakeholder group or organization not represented in the CWG or currently active within ICANN, or self-appointed.

Of the 138 CWG members and participants, the regional representation is as follows:

  • 47 Asia/Asia Pacific
  • 36 Europe
  • 31 North America
  • 12 Latin America
  • 12 Africa

Of the 138 CWG members and participants, the stakeholder group representation is as follows:

  • 47 (no affiliation)
  • 32 GNSO
  • 20 GAC
  • 18 ccNSO/ccTLD
  • 18 At-Large
  • 2 SSAC
  • 1 ASO

Also, there are 6 ICG members who participate in the CWG.

1 For a full list of sessions relevant to the IANA Stewardship Transition, please see here.

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