Second GNSO Organizational Review
The Second GNSO Organizational Review (GNSO2) was initiated in 2014 and completed in 2016, with the implementation of improvements continuing through January 2019.
Article 4.4 of the ICANN Bylaws requires periodic review of all supporting organizations and advisory committees, as well as the Nominating Committee. The bylaws state three objectives for the review:
- to determine whether that organization, council or committee has a continuing purpose in the ICANN structure;
- if so, whether any change in structure or operations is desirable to improve its effectiveness; and
- whether that organization, council or committee is accountable to its constituencies, stakeholder groups, organizations and other stakeholders.
The First GNSO Organizational Review, initiated in 2008, was a substantial and far-reaching undertaking that included the development of the two-house structure of the GNSO Council. Implementation of improvements from GNSO1 extended into the middle of 2012. This led the Structural Improvements Committee (as it was then known) to seek public comment on a proposal to defer GNSO2. The proposal received eight comments, seven of which were strongly in favor of initiating the review as soon as possible. Some commenters noted that the independent examiner's assessment of the GNSO dated to 2006, with prior reviews of the GNSO Council (as well as the GNSO Council's self-assessment) being performed even earlier. Upon review of the comments, the SIC determined that it should propose a start date of 2014 to the ICANN Board. At its regular meeting on September 28, 2013, the board passed a resolution instructing the SIC to initiate GNSO2: "Resolved (2013.09.28.09), that the Board directs the SIC to schedule the review of the Generic Names Supporting Organization (GNSO), which is mandated by ICANN Bylaws Article IV, Section 4, to commence in 2014, and that preparations for this Review commence as soon as feasible."
Initiation and RFP
Although the GNSO2 dashboard indicates that the review process was launched in January 2014, the first substantive documentation of the review comes from ICANN 49 in Singapore, when Ray Plzak of the SIC gave a presentation to a working session of the GNSO regarding the upcoming review. Plzak emphasized that the review would take the first question - whether the GNSO should continue to exist - as a given. In addition, he described the "improvements" to the review process that were being made to focus the efforts of the independent examiner:
For those of you that endured the last review of the GNSO, the contractor was able to basically go out and figure out what he wanted to talk about, spend time figuring out what the organization is supposed to be doing, and then go out and charge around. And that was true not only for the GNSO, but true of the rest of the reviews, so we’re not going to let that occur this time so we’re going to keep him focused.
The RFP, according to Plzak, identified narrowly structured areas of inquiry specific to "organizational effectiveness," so that the independent examiner had just one question to answer. It appears, but was not explicitly stated, that the predetermination of the GNSO's continued existence within ICANN was also a means of avoiding an examination of, or proposed alterations to, the structure of the GNSO.
In April 2014, ICANN posted its RFP for an independent examiner to conduct the review. The RFP included submission guidelines and documents for vendors to use in submitting their proposals. The SIC then hosted a webinar on May 7, 2014, discussing the intent and scope of the GNSO2 review. The briefing outlined the same scope that Ray Plzak presented at the March working session. Avri Doria asked during the webinar if the Terms of Reference for the review had been shared or workshopped with the GNSO community. The response was that the working session at ICANN 49 "shared" the scope of the review.
GNSO2 was notable for the addition of a "360-degree Assessment" of the GNSO's activity and effectiveness. This was intended to focus on GNSO Council members and other stakeholders to provide a self-assessment of the GNSO's effectiveness. It appears that this was intended to limit the number and breadth of interviews required to gather information for the independent examiner.
At the webinar, staff presented a timeline that anticipated the final report by February 2015, with implementation of improvements beginning in the spring of 2015. The process of budgeting for and launching improvements was anticipated to take a year, with feedback and refinement of improvements continuing through 2018. The review cycle anticipated an effectiveness self-assessment in 2018, to prepare for the next Article 4.4 review.
Influence of Review Improvement Discussions within the SIC
At the time that GNSO2 was initiated, the Structural Improvements Committee (as it was then known) was engaged in a discussion regarding the standardization and streamlining of reviews. Ray Plzak's observation, above, that independent examiners were "charging around" appeared to be part of the impetus for implementing a standard framework for reviews and closely guiding the activities of the independent examiners. It also appears that GNSO2 was in some ways a pilot project for a new, restrictive, set of guidelines regarding the scope and intent or the review.
NCPH Objection to Scope, January 2015
In January 2015, during the course of the review, the Non-Contracted Parties House of the GNSO met to discuss a variety of issues relevant to its constituency. Among those issues was the scope and focus of the GNSO2 review. The result was a letter to the ICANN Board regarding the failure of the review to address structural issues. In contradiction to Ray Plzak's position, above, the NCPH urged the Board to address the GNSO's structural issues:
What is required is a thorough review of the current GNSO structure that takes full account of the evolution of the DNS and the interaction that is required between those players who have a major role to play in GNSO policy development. Without recognition of the need to undertake this exercise and commit to a program that is developed with the full cooperation of all impacted parties, an important part of ICANN's multi-stakeholder model will continue to be viewed as dysfunctional by many of those who remain committed to try and deliver coherent and progressive policy within the current structural architecture of the GNSO.
The letter generated discussion first in the SIC, where it shared agenda space with the SIC's ongoing discussions on the streamlining of ICANN's review processes. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the letter was met with minimal enthusiasm:
The SIC discussed that the limitation [on structural review] was to not wind up with a situation that the reviewer would impose their own proposed structure onto the GNSO, as had previously occurred, though issues of structure were clearly anticipated to be highlighted within the findings. The SIC also discussed that it was important for the GNSO community to understand that it remains empowered to try to determine if there is a better structure that will serve its needs.
The committee proposed to draft a letter to that effect to the NCPH - however, at the next meeting no such draft had emerged. Instead, with the draft report from Westlake Consulting in hand, the committee decided that "as the changing environment of the GNSO was part of the findings, concerns with specific recommendations and methodology at this point are best handled through the public comment process and through the working group." The task of responding to the NCPH fell to board chair Steve Crocker, who sent an email in May 2015. Noting that "the objective of the GNSO Review is to examine organizational effectiveness of the GNSO, including its structure components," the email proposed a conversation on the issue at ICANN 53 in Buenos Aires. It does not appear that that conversation occurred, at least not in a public session. The draft report was addressed in multiple sessions held by the GNSO and its constituency groups, and attended by Westlake (see below). The topic was also briefly mentioned at the board's meeting with the Non-Commercial Stakeholders Group. The topic was not raised at the Public Forum.
Independent Examiner Draft Report
The Westlake team's methodology "expanded well beyond" the proposed scope in the RFP. The team utilized the following approaches:
- Examination of documentation, records, and reports;
- Outcomes from the 360-degree Assessment and Supplementary Working Group Surveys;
- Integration of Assessments from ATRT2; and
- "Limited" interviews (see below).
The Westlake team encountered some challenges in the information-gathering phase. First, the 360-degree assessment, while widely responded to, did not present sufficient feedback on the effectiveness and operations of working groups within the GNSO. A separate survey was launched specific to working groups, and while the responses received were a useful source of qualitative data, there were not enough responses to draw conclusions on quantitative grounds. There were also a number of "high priority" respondents that did not answer either survey, resulting in a need to increase the number of interviews conducted. In all, there were over 150 completed responses to the initial 360-degree assessment, twenty-five responses from twenty individuals to the follow-up survey on working groups, and forty interviews conducted to both validate findings from the assessments and to provide depth and background. As Westlake reported:
In retrospect this approach was less than ideally efficient:
- It is almost axiomatic that members of the Working Party are currently active in the GNSO and a significant number of its members have significant experience with ICANN over many years. Not surprisingly, the composition of the Working Party largely reflects ICANN’s and the GNSO’s demographic make-up – most of them would likely be viewed as GNSO ‘insiders’. As a result, issues of concern to ‘outsiders’ and those with little experience in ICANN did not emerge as clearly in the early stages as they did later.
- As a result of feedback we received after the launch of the 360 Assessment, we were made aware that we needed to examine the role of GNSO Working Groups in more detail than the 360 Assessment had provided. We therefore developed and launched a Supplementary Working Group survey that was posted after the close of the main 360 Assessment. This Supplementary survey gathered some useful information, from a small number of people who completed it, but the number of responses was small (25 responses – including multiple responses from a small number of people who commented on more than one Working Group). The actual number of individuals responding was fewer than 20 so we attempted where possible to cross-check comments against those from people we later interviewed.
- The 360 Assessment and the Working Group surveys for this review were initially published in English, and ICANN translated both surveys into the five other United Nations languages, posting invitations in all of these languages on the GNSO website. Social media, including communications in the five other UN languages, were deployed consistently to promote the surveys and encourage participation. Despite these efforts and significant promotion of both surveys, we did not receive a single request to send a copy of the survey in any language other than English. We did receive two sets of responses in French, but these were posted to the English language version of the 360 Assessment. We conclude from this that even those respondents had at least a working knowledge of English, in order to understand the statements they were responding to.
The draft report identified a number of findings that could be clustered into four broad topics: participation and representation; continuous development; transparency; and alignment with ICANN's future. Westlake also incorporated an assessment of the implementation of improvements recommended in GNSO1, finding that most of the recommended improvements had been implemented. Failures in implementation, as well as areas for improvement, generally aligned with the four themes identified by Westlake. The draft report organized Westlake's findings using the framework of GNSO1's recommendations, adding a sixth topic, "Changing Environment," to reflect the new issues and changes that the GNSO could expect to face in the future.
Working Group Model
- The working group model has been effective;
- Staff support for working groups was rated highly;
- A relatively small group of volunteers does the majority of the work;
- Working groups are dominated by English speakers from North America and Europe; and
- Working group involvement in policy implementation is limited.
Policy Development Process
- Opinion is evenly divided regarding the pace of PDPs (too slow or too fast to developed policies);
- Technology support is present but presents separate challenges to efficiency;
- Consistent measurement and evaluation of policy impact is still lacking; and
- The GNSO has not taken steps to align its processes with ICANN's strategic plan.
GNSO Council Restructure
- The Council's function as strategic manager of policy development initiatives should continue to emphasize the proper composition, completion of work, and process of each PDP working group;
- Prioritization of projects and policy efforts remains an important - and under-developed - function of the Council; and
- The effectiveness of the Council is hampered by incomplete implementation of training for Council members.
- The GNSO and ICANN Board are perceived to be hostile to new constituency applications;
- The decision-making process for constituency applications is opaque;
- Statements of Interest have not been fully utilized, publicized, or enforced by the various constituencies, and the availability of SoI information is dependent upon research skills; and
- Staff support for constituencies is perceived to vary widely, and some groups and constituencies are unsupported.
Improving Communication and Coordination with ICANN Bodies
- Communication with the Board appears to be excellent; and
- Communication and coordination with other SOs and ACs could be improved.
- There is a significant absence of geographic and cultural diversity in the make-up of most GNSO structures, and in the Council;
- The GNSO should aim to include the widest practicable community of stakeholders in its processes;
- A global organization must find ways to share the discomfort of global interaction; and
- Substantial barriers to participation exist for non-English speakers.
The draft report presented thirty-six recommendations based on its findings. For ease of reference, the report created a separate annex of recommendations against the four themes of the findings:
Participation and Representation
- Recommendation 1: Develop and monitor metrics to evaluate the ongoing effectiveness of current outreach strategies and pilot programmes with regard to GNSO Working Groups (WGs) (as noted in the WG participation recommendations under section 5.4.5)
- Recommendation 2: Develop and fund more targeted programmes to recruit volunteers and broaden participation in PDP WGs, given the vital role volunteers play in Working Groups and policy development.
- Recommendation 3: Review the level, scope and targeting of financial assistance to ensure volunteers are able to participate on a footing comparable with those who participate in GNSO as part of their profession.
- Recommendation 4: Explore a tailored incentive system to increase the motivation of volunteers. (For example, this may include training & development opportunities or greater recognition of individuals).
- Recommendation 5: Continue initiatives that aim to reduce the barriers to newcomers.
- Recommendation 6: That the GNSO record and regularly publish statistics on WG participation (including diversity statistics).
- Recommendation 7: That Stakeholder Groups (SGs) and Constituencies (Cs) explore and implement ways to engage more deeply with community members whose first language is other than English, as a means to overcoming language barriers.
- Recommendation 12: That ICANN assess the feasibility of providing a real-time transcribing service in audio conferences for prioritised PDP WGs
- Recommendation 19: As a strategic manager rather than a policy body the GNSO Council should continue to focus on ensuring that a WG has been properly constituted, has thoroughly fulfilled the terms of its charter and has followed due process.
- Recommendation 23: That the GNSO Council and SGs and Cs adhere to the published process for applications for new constituencies. That the ICANN Board in assessing an application satisfy itself that all parties have followed due process. Subject to the application meeting the conditions, the default outcome should be that a new Constituency is admitted.
- Recommendation 25: That the GNSO Council commission the development of, and implement, guidelines to provide assistance for groups wishing to establish a new Constituency.
- Recommendation 32: That ICANN define “cultural diversity” and that relevant metrics (encompassing geographic, gender, age group and cultural, possibly by using birth language) be monitored and published.
- Recommendation 33: That SGs, Cs and the Nominating Committee, in selecting their candidates for appointment to the GNSO Council, should aim to increase the geographic, gender and cultural diversity of its participants, as defined in ICANN Core Value 4.
- Recommendation 34: That PDP WGs rotate the start time of their meetings in order not to disadvantage people who wish to participate from anywhere in the world. This should be the norm for PDP WG meetings even if at first all the WG’s members come from the “traditional” regions of North America and Europe.
- Recommendation 35: That the GNSO Council establish a WG, whose membership specifically reflects the demographic, cultural and gender diversity of the Internet as a whole, to identify and develop ways to reduce barriers to participation in the GNSO by non-English speakers and those with limited command of English.
- Recommendation 36: That, when approving the formation of a PDP WG, the GNSO Council require that its membership represent as far as reasonably practicable the geographic, cultural and gender diversity of the Internet as a whole. Additionally, that when approving GNSO Policy, the ICANN Board explicitly satisfy itself that the GNSO Council undertook these actions when approving the formation of a PDP WG.
- Recommendation 8: That WGs should have an explicit role in responding to implementation issues related to policy they have developed, and that the current Policy and Implementation Working Group specifically address the role of WGs in responding to policy implementation issues
- Recommendation 9: That a formal Working Group leadership assessment programme be developed as part of the overall training and development programme.
- Recommendation 10: That a professional facilitator/moderator is used in certain situations (for example, when policy issues are complex, where members of the WG are generally inexperienced and/or where WG members have interests that conflict), and that the GNSO develop guidelines for the circumstances in which professional facilitators/moderators are used for Working Groups.
- Recommendation 11: That the face-to-face PDP WG pilot project be assessed when completed. If the results are beneficial, guidelines should be developed and support funding made available.
- Recommendation 13: That ICANN evaluate one or more alternative decision support systems and experiment with these for supporting WGs.
- Recommendation 14: That the GNSO further explores PDP ‘chunking’ and examines each potential PDP as to its feasibility for breaking into discrete stages.
- Recommendation 15: That the GNSO continues current PDP Improvements Project initiatives to address the timeliness of the PDP.
- Recommendation 16: That a policy impact assessment (PIA) be included as a standard part of any policy process.
- Recommendation 17: That the practice of Working Group self-evaluation becomes standard at the completion of the WG’s work; and that these evaluations should be published and used as a basis for continual process improvement in the PDP.
- Recommendation 18: That the GNSO Council evaluate post implementation policy effectiveness on an ongoing basis (rather than periodically as stated in the current GNSO Operating Procedures); and that these evaluations are analysed by the GNSO Council to monitor and improve the drafting and scope of future PDP Charters and facilitate the effectiveness of GNSO policy outcomes over time.
- Recommendation 22: That the GNSO should review and implement a revised training and development programme encompassing:
- Skills and competencies for each Council member
- Training and development needs identified
- Training and development relevant to each Council member
- Formal assessment system with objective measures
- Continual assessment and review.
- Recommendation 29: That new members of WGs and newcomers at ICANN meetings be surveyed to determine how well their input is solicited and accepted by the community, and that the results be published and considered by the GNSO Council at its next meeting.
- Recommendation 30: That the GNSO develop and implement a policy for the provision of administrative support for SGs and Cs; and that SGs and Cs annually review and evaluate the effectiveness of administrative support they receive.
- Recommendation 31: That the GAC-GNSO Consultation Group on GAC Early Engagement in the GNSO Policy Development Process continue its two workstreams as priority projects. As a part of its work it should consider how the GAC could appoint a non-binding, non-voting liaison to the WG of each relevant GNSO PDP as a means of providing timely input.
- Recommendation 24: That all applications for new constituencies, including historic applications, be published on the ICANN website with full transparency of decision-making.
- Recommendation 26: That GNSO Council members, Executive Committee members of SGs and Cs and members of WGs complete and maintain a current, comprehensive SoI. Where individuals represent bodies or clients, this information is to be posted. If not posted because of client confidentiality, the participant’s interest or position must be disclosed. Failing either of these, the individual not be permitted to participate.
- Recommendation 27: That the GNSO establish and maintain a centralised publicly available list of members and individual participants of every Constituency and Stakeholder Group (with a link to the individual’s SOI where one is required and posted).
- Recommendation 28: That section 6.1.2 of the GNSO Operating Procedures be revised, as shown in Appendix 6, to clarify that key clauses are mandatory rather than advisory, and to institute meaningful sanctions for non-compliance where appropriate.
Alignment with ICANN's Future
- Recommendation 20: That the GNSO Council should review annually ICANN’s Strategic Objectives with a view to planning future policy development that strikes a balance between ICANN’s Strategic Objectives and the GNSO resources available for policy development.
- Recommendation 21: The GNSO Council should regularly undertake or commission analysis of trends in gTLDs in order to forecast their likely requirements for policy and to ensure those affected are well-represented in the policy-making process.
Comment on the draft report was collected at public sessions during ICANN 53 in Buenos Aires, as well as via written submission. The topic of structure was addressed multiple times, including Westlake's update to the GNSO during its working session on June 21. The GNSO's meeting with the board during the same working session was focused largely on implementation and process of the New gTLD Round, and there was little mention of the Review. At a session with the Commercial Stakeholders Group, Richard Westlake explained the team's approach in response to the large number of comments received about structure:
So what we said was two things. First of all that we are very conscious that structural change can be enormously time-consuming and distracting and in our view would not address the substantive issues which are covered by our 36 recommendations... ...And therefore if anybody is thinking of perhaps taking one card out of that pile of a very complex structure we would caution against doing so until you have agreed among yourselves or had agreed upon you if must something that will replace it that will be certainly no worse. But until that happens it is functioning. It may not be efficient. It may not be simple. It may not please everybody but it probably displeases most people about evenly.
Westlake was obligated to provide similar explanations at meetings with the Business Constituency and the Intellectual Property Constituency at ICANN 53. Throughout, he frequently affirmed that, from the outset, Westlake's instructions were to avoid an examination or review of the structure of the GNSO. In the BC meeting, John Berard confirmed this in his comment:
I believe it was the Singapore meeting, not the last one but the one before, when Ray Plzak came to the GNSO Council to talk about the start of this review process. Ray made it clear that his intention as the lead board member was for this to be essentially a set of checkboxes reviewing the activities of each of the constituencies and the stakeholder groups to see what they did and where they did it and how they did it and if they get it. And he was clear that there was not to be a structural review aspect to this.
Fifteen written comments were also received during the comment period. Among those written submissions, consensus statements from the BC, the IPC, the ISPCP, and the NOPC, as well as a non-consensus statement from NCUC & NCSG members, all reiterated complaints that were raised in Buenos Aires about the scope and focus of the review. Comments submitted by individuals and external organizations echoed those concerns. Klaus Stoll stated that "As the report does not address the underlying structures and relationships, the recommendations can only seen as bad aids [sic] and as markers to an ongoing and deeper discussion." Edward Morris, then a member of the GNSO Council, submitted a comment that began in part "...I look forward to working with those in the greater GNSO community and beyond to create an even more robust, effective and efficient governance model than the one we now have. To accomplish that goal the first thing we need to do is to completely disregard the entire Westlake report." The Brand Registry Group also called out the review as being inconsistent with ICANN's bylaws and the board's directives regarding the review. A handful of commenters, including Google, INTA, APAC Space, RySG and ISOC Kolkata, did not take issue with the scope of the report (although RySG did note that it was clear that there were structural issues to be addressed).
Westlake "found many comments provided during the Public Comment Period of great value, and elements of our Final Report were modified as a result."
Westlake submitted its final report on September 15, 2015. The total number of recommendations in the final report remained steady at thirty-six. However, some recommendations were substantially changed, consolidated, or refined. An overview of the changes follows.
Changed Recommendations in the Final Report
|Rec. #||Draft Report||Final Report|
|3||Review the level, scope and targeting of financial assistance to ensure volunteers are able to participate on a footing comparable with those who participate in GNSO as part of their profession.||Reduce or remove cost barriers to volunteer participation in WGs.|
|4||Explore a tailored incentive system to increase the motivation of volunteers. (For example, this may include training & development opportunities or greater recognition of individuals).||Introduce non-‐financial rewards and recognition for volunteers.|
|5||Continue initiatives that aim to reduce the barriers to newcomers.||During each WG self-assessment, new members be asked how their input has been solicited and considered.|
|13||That ICANN evaluate one or more alternative decision support systems and experiment with these for supporting WGs.||That the GNSO Council evaluate and, if appropriate, pilot a technology solution (such as Loomio or similar) to facilitate wider participation in WG consensus‐based decision making.|
|22||That the GNSO should review and implement a revised training and development programme encompassing:
− Skills and competencies for each Council member
− Training and development needs identified
− Training and development relevant to each Council member
− Formal assessment system with objective measures
− Continual assessment and review.
|That the GNSO Council develop a competency-based framework, which its members should utilise to identify development needs and opportunities.|
|23||That the GNSO Council and SGs and Cs adhere to the published process for applications for new constituencies. That the ICANN Board in assessing an application satisfy itself that all parties have followed due process. Subject to the application meeting the conditions, the default outcome should be that a new Constituency is admitted.||In order to support ICANN's multi-stakeholder model, all Cs should have seats on the GNSO Council, allocated equally (as far as numerically practicable) by their SGs.|
|24||That all applications for new constituencies, including historic applications, be published on the ICANN website with full transparency of decision-making.||That the GNSO Council and SGs and Cs adhere to the published process for applications for new constituencies. That the ICANN Board in assessing an application satisfy itself that all parties have followed due process. Subject to the application meeting the conditions, the default outcome should be that a new Constituency is admitted. That all applications for new constituencies, including historic applications, be published on the ICANN website with full transparency of decision-making.|
|29||That new members of WGs and newcomers at ICANN meetings be surveyed to determine how well their input is solicited and accepted by the community, and that the results be published and considered by the GNSO Council at its next meeting.||That SOIs of GNSO Council Members and Executive Committee members of all SGs and Cs include the total number of years that person has held leadership positions in ICANN.|
|32||That ICANN define “cultural diversity” and that relevant metrics (encompassing geographic, gender, age group and cultural, possibly by using birth language) be monitored and published.||That ICANN define “cultural diversity” (possibly by using birth language); and regularly publish this along with geographic, gender and age group metrics, at least for the GNSO Council, SGs, Cs and WGs.|
Although the report notes that the public comments on the draft report guided the team's changes to the final report, there are few indications of how (or which) public comments influenced the modification of recommendations.
The majority of recommendations remained unchanged or incorporated minor modifications. The changes to the recommendations largely altered the recommended approach, rather than the underlying strategy or theme.
GNSO and Board Action on Final Report
Upon receipt of the final report, the GNSO Review Working Party (WP) began work developing a Feasibility and Prioritization Report. The working group conducted a survey of its membership, asking for members to score each recommendation on:
- ease of implementation;
- cost of implementation;
- alignment with strategic plan;
- impact on other work or groups;
- whether and what type of additional information would be needed to implement; and
- priority of the recommendation.
The raw scores were combined, and further discussion among the working group allowed the group to sort the recommendations into four categories:
- WP suggests adoption;
- WP agrees and work is underway;
- WP agrees with the intent and suggests modification of recommendation language; and
- do not implement.
The scores of the recommendations in each category were factored in to create a priority order for each set of recommendations. The more factors weighed in the recommendation's favor (easy to implement, low cost, strategically aligned, dependency free, no additional information required, and high priority in the opinion of the WP members), the higher the score.
The working party rejected three recommendations: Recommendation 21 (regularly study trends in gTLDs to identify policy needs and affected stakeholders); Recommendation 23 (all constituencies should have seats on the GNSO Council); and Recommendation 32 (define "cultural diversity" and regularly report on diversity and demographics of GNSO membership). They identified three high priority recommendations for implementation. Two recommendations received the highest possible score from the WP: Recommendation 6, that the GNSO record and regularly publish statistics on GNSO participation (including diversity statistics); and Recommendation 26, requiring Statements of Interest for any member of the GNSO Council, an executive committee of an SG or constituency, and any working group. The other high priority recommendations were designated "WP agrees and work is underway," with recommendations for further GNSO action to ensure that the recommendation was fully implemented.
The GNSO Council adopted the WP's Feasibility and Prioritization Report in April 2016, with a minor modification to one of the low priority recommendations.
At its meeting in May 2016, the Organizational Effectiveness Committee (previously the SIC) agreed to submit Westlake's final report, along with the feasibility and prioritization report, to the ICANN Board for action at its June meeting. The board accepted the report and the GNSO's feasibility assessment in June 2016.
In July, the GNSO Council adopted a draft charter for the implementation working group (IWG) and put out a call for volunteers. The first meeting of the IWG was convened in September 2016, and work began on sorting implementation into phases.
The IWG completed work on all improvements and submitted its final report in July 2018. The GNSO Council accepted the report in its August meeting and transmitted the report to the board. The board accepted the final implementation report in January 2019, marking the end of the GNSO2 Review.
- ICANN.org - GNSO Organizational Review Dashboard
- ICANN Bylaws - Article 4.4
- ICANN.org Announcement - Potential Postponement of the GNSO Review, July 15, 2013
- ICANN.org - Public Comment Proceeding: Potential Postponement of the GNSO Review, posted July 15, 2013, comment period extended to September 6, 2013]
- Staff Report on Public Comment Proceeding, GNSO Review, September 2013
- Minutes of the Meeting of the Structural Improvements Committee, September 27, 2013
- Resolution of the Board, September 28 2013
- Presentation Slides - GNSO Review Working Session, March 22, 2014
- Transcript of Working Session - GNSO Review, March 22, 2014
- ICANN.org Announcement - Request for Proposals, GNSO2, April 23, 2014
- ICANN.org Announcement - Webinar Briefing about GNSO2, April 23, 2014 (recordings available)
- GNSO2 Webinar Slides, May 7, 2014 (PDF)
- For more background on the SIC's efforts at the time, see ICANNWiki's ICANN Reviews article
- ICANN.org Archive - NCPH Letter to ICANN Board, January 16, 2015
- Meeting Minutes - Structural Improvement Committee, February 6, 2015
- Meeting Minutes, Structural Improvement Committee, April 25, 2015
- ICANN.org Archive - Steve Crocker to NCPH, May 6, 2015
- ICANN 53 Archive - Full Schedule
- ICANN 53 Archive - Board Meeting with the NCSG, June 23, 2015
- ICANN 53 Archive - Public Forum, June 25, 2015
- ICANN.org Announcement - Westlake Governance Appointed to Conduct GNSO2 Review, June 23, 2014
- Draft Report of Independent Examiner - GNSO2, May 29, 2015
- Transcript Excerpts from GNSO Review Sessions at ICANN 53, June 1 2015
- Public Comment Proceeding - GNSO2 Draft Report, Initiated June 1, 2015
- ICANN 53 Archive - GNSO Review Update, GNSO Working Session Transcript, June 21, 2015
- ICANN 53 Archive - Transcript, GNSO Meeting with the ICANN Board, June 21, 2015
- ICANN 53 Archive - Commercial Stakeholders Group Meeting Transcript, June 23, 2015
- ICANN 53 Archive - Intellectual Property Constituency Meeting Transcript, June 23, 2015
- ICANN 53 Archive - Business Constituency Meeting Transcript, June 23, 2015
- Staff Report on Public Comment Proceeding, August 26, 2015
- ICANN.org Listserv Archive - Comments, GNSO2
- ICANN.org Listserv Archive - Personal Comments of Klaus Stoll, July 30, 2015
- ICANN Listserv Archive - Personal Comment of Edward Morris, July 31, 2015
- ICANN.org Listserv Archive - BRG response to GNSO2, July 16, 2015
- Final Report of Independent Examiner, GNSO2, September 15, 2015
- GNSO2 Workspace - Feasibility and Prioritization Executive Summary, last updated May 9, 2016
- GNSO2 Workspace - Final Recommendations - Feasibility & Prioritization, last updated August 12, 2016
- GNSO Workspace - Council Resolutions, April 2016
- Meeting Minutes, Organizational Effectiveness Committee, May 15, 2016
- Resolution of the Board, June 25, 2016
- GNSO Workspace - Draft Charter, GNSO2 Review, July 11, 2016
- ICANN.org Announcement - Call for Volunteers for GNSO2 IWG, July 27, 2016
- Meeting Minutes, GNSO2 Review Working Group, September 29, 2016
- Final Report - GNSO2 Review Implementation Working Group, July 30, 2018
- GNSO Workspace - Council Meeting Minutes, August 16, 2018
- Resolution of the Board, January 27, 2019