With the 2005 World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) in
The proposals here are designed to address the most important criticisms that have been made of ICANN. These criticisms include:
- Concerns about unilateralism by the US Government in its control of the DNS root and its supervision of ICANN.
- Dissatisfaction with ICANN’s Government Advisory Committee (GAC), where governments have only advisory powers.
- The perception that ICANN’s governance model does not properly balance the interests of developed and developing countries and suppliers and users.
- Concerns about the relations between ICANN, country code top level domain administrators (ccTLDs), and national governments.
- The overall perception that ICANN lacks legitimacy.
To address these issues, this paper proposes the following reforms for ICANN:
1) Limits on power and internationalized oversight. A legally-binding international agreement narrowly defining ICANN’s powers and replacing US Government supervision with internationalized supervision. This would allow abolition of ICANN’s Government Advisory Committee.
2) Democratization. Reinstatement and strengthening of the At Large membership of ICANN, especially a return to election of the At Large Board members and the granting of voting rights on ICANN’s GNSO to At Large representatives.
3) Competition. Coordinated sharing of responsibilities between ICANN and the ITU in a way that would allow ccTLD managers and IP address users a choice of alternative governance arrangements.
[Note: this is only the executive summary. To download the full paper go to the Internet Governance Project site at www.internetgovernance.org ]
 The IGP has advocated a similar approach to broader issues of Internet governance. See: “A Framework Convention: An Institutional Option for Internet Governance” at www.InternetGovernance.org