9 February 2018

NRO EC and ASO AC Joint Response to the 2017 Independent ASO Review Recommendations

8 January 2018

In 2017, the Number Resource Organization (NRO) engaged ITEMS International to conduct the second independent review of the Address Supporting Organization (ASO). The objective of this review was to determine whether the ASO has a continuing purpose in the ICANN structure, whether any change in structure or operations of the ASO would be desirable to improve its effectiveness in the ICANN structure, and additionally whether the ASO is sufficiently accountable to the Internet number community when carrying out its responsibilities.

The result of the ASO Review was published in August 2017, and has been considered by the NRO Executive Council (NRO EC) and by the ASO Address Council (ASO AC). While the final outcome of the Review will be determined through community-wide consultations, the NRO EC and ASO AC have prepared this response to 18 recommendations of the Review Report, including our recommended next steps for addressing each.

Recommendation # 1: ICANN should consider updating its Bylaws to reflect the fact that the NRO will, like the GAC, and according to the ASO MoU, provide its own review mechanism for the review of ASO.

We recommend proceeding on Recommendation 1.

Recommendation # 2: The NRO should consider updating the ASO MoU to reflect the fact that the appropriate section of the New ICANN Bylaws regarding Organizational Reviews is Section 4.4 (previously Article IV, Section 4).

We recommend proceeding on Recommendation 2.

Recommendation # 3: The NRO should adopt a procedure for conducting periodic reviews of the ASO in line with processes used by the ICANN Organizational Effectiveness Committee.

We recommend proceeding on Recommendation 3.

Recommendation # 4: The signatories of the ASO MoU should consider updates to the MoU including i) the addition of AFRINIC as a signatory, ii) the removal of Appendix B. iii) updates in connection with the responsibilities of the ASO as a Decisional Participant in the ICANN Empowered Community.

We recommend proceeding on i) the addition of AFRINIC as a signatory and ii) the removal of Appendix B. We do not recommend proceeding on iii) updates in connection with the responsibilities of the ASO as a Decisional Participant in the ICANN Empowered Community, as such updates would be duplicative of information already contained in ICANN Bylaws.

Recommendation # 5: Upon completion of every independent review of the ASO, the NRO and ICANN should initiate discussions, as per Article 9 of the MoU, to examine results and consequences of their cooperation. The parties should determine if the ASO has a continuing purpose within the ICANN structure, and re-evaluate the MoU accordingly.

We recommend proceeding on Recommendation 5.

Recommendation # 6: The ASO AC should ensure that procedures are developed for Steps 12, 15 and 16 of the GPDP as described in Attachment A of the ASO MoU.

We recommend that the ASO AC should work on the “agreed procedures” referred to in steps 12 and 15 of the GPDP. We recommend that the NRO EC should work on the agreement referred to in step 16 of the GPDP.

Recommendation # 7: The ASO should consider the adoption of a single, authoritative description of the GPDP for global numbering policies. The same description of the GPDP should appear in Attachment A of the ASO MoU and the relevant section of the Operating Procedures of the ASO AC (Currently Section 6).

We consider that there is the two documents serve different purposes and do not conflict. Attachment A of the ASO MoU is the authoritative definition of the Global Policy Development Process. Section 6 of the ASO AC operation procedures gives more detail about how the ASO AC will implement the GPDP. We suggest asking the ASO AC to edit their operating procedures to clarify the relationship between the GPDP and the operating procedures.

Recommendation # 8: With a view to increasing awareness regarding the mission, main operations, and separation of roles between the ASO AC and the NRO EC within the ASO, the NRO should consider the use of more infographics on its website.

We agree to consider the use of more infographics on its website.

Recommendation # 9: The ASO AC should implement term limits for the positions of Chair and Vice-Chair.

We refer recommendation 9 to the ASO AC for their consideration.

Recommendation # 10: The ASO AC should ensure that the duties of the Address Council Chair and the Address Council Vice-Chairs need to be added to the ASO AC Operating Procedures.

We refer recommendation 10 to the ASO AC for their consideration.

Recommendation # 11: The ASO AC should ensure that its internal procedure for the removal of an ICANN Board Director is consistent with Section 7.11 of the New ICANN Bylaws.

We agree that there is a need to update procedures for removal of an ICANN Board Director, and note that this may need procedural changes by both the ASO AC and the NRO NC, in view of the NRO’s role in the ICANN Empowered Community. We also note that there are concerns about whether ASO AC members acting in good faith would be indemnified by ICANN, the NRO, or the RIRs.

Recommendation # 12: The ASO should establish the NRO Executive Secretary as the ASO Point of Contact (PoC). The ASO AC should establish procedures for forwarding communications to appropriate parties within the ASO.

As included in recommendation 12, we agree to review the contact points and procedures for reaching relevant parties in the ASO and NRO. We do not recommend proceeding with establishing the NRO Secretariat as the ASO contact point, but instead recommends reviewing and establishing clear contact points and procedures as appropriate.

Recommendation # 13: The ASO MoU should be updated to reflect the new reality of the Empowered Community and specify that the roles and responsibilities within the ASO must be clearly defined.

We believe that the Empowered Community is out of the scope of the ASO review, and that updating the MoU is not appropriate as the updates would be duplicative of information already contained in ICANN Bylaws.

Recommendation # 14: The ASO AC should either confirm that the designated representative of the ASO on the Empowered Community Administration will be the Chair of the NRO EC, or develop a procedure for appointing another representative.

We confirm that the Chair of the NRO EC (or an alternative representative as selected by the NRO EC when necessary) is the Designated Representative of the ASO. The NRO EC is the appropriate body to define the appointment process (rather than the ASO AC) because the Empowered Community is not an ICANN body but a separate organization.

Recommendation # 15: ASO AC meetings should be open to the public, except for discussions regarding the selection of individuals for ICANN roles.

We refer recommendation 15 to the ASO AC for their consideration.

Recommendation # 16: For its internal communications, and for most matters related to the operations of the ASO, the ASO should favour the use of a publicly archived mailing list. In exceptional circumstances, for issues (e.g. Board appointments) that cannot be discussed in public, a non-publicly archived list should be used.

We believe that recommendation intends ASO AC when it notes ‘…the ASO should favour the use of a publicly archived mailing list’. We therefore refer recommendation 16 to the ASO AC for their consideration.

Recommendation # 17: In the interests of transparency, the ASO website should be updated with recent presentations, contact details and an archive of the activities of both the ASO AC and NRO EC.

We recommend proceeding on Recommendation 17.

Recommendation # 18: The NRO should initiate a public consultation, involving the five RIR communities, to determine the future structure of the ASO.

We agree that “The NRO should initiate a public consultation, involving the five RIR communities, to determine the future structure of the ASO”.

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