As Westlake Governance prepared its Draft Report, four main themes became evident as they drafted their recommendations

The Draft Report was posted on 1 June for public comment which will remain open through 20 July.  The Report Summary (Section 1, pages 4-20) offers a brief overview of Westlake’s work and outlines 36 proposed recommendations, classified into four topical themes: Participation and Representation; Continuous Development; Transparency; and Alignment with ICANN’s Future. Please refer to the specific recommendation and relevant section of the Draft Report for additional details and context about each recommendation.

Below is the complete list of the 36 proposed recommendations:

Rec #ThemeRecommendation
1Participation & RepresentationDevelop 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)
2Participation & RepresentationDevelop 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.
3Participation & RepresentationReview 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.
4Participation & RepresentationExplore a tailored incentive system to increase the motivation of volunteers. (For example, this may include training & development opportunities or greater recognition of individuals).
5Participation & RepresentationContinue initiatives that aim to reduce the barriers to newcomers.
6Participation & RepresentationThat the GNSO record and regularly publish statistics on WG participation (including diversity statistics).
7Participation & RepresentationThat 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.
8Continuous DevelopmentThat 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.
9Continuous Development  That a formal Working Group leadership assessment programme be developed as part of the overall training and development programme.
10Continuous Development  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.
11Continuous Development  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.
12Participation & RepresentationThat ICANN assess the feasibility of providing a real-time transcripting service in audio conferences for prioritised PDP WGs. 
13Continuous Development  That ICANN evaluate one or more alternative decision support systems and experiment with these for supporting WGs.
14Continuous Development  That the GNSO further explores PDP ‘chunking’ and examines each potential PDP as to its feasibility for breaking into discrete stages. 
15Continuous Development  That the GNSO continues current PDP Improvements Project initiatives to address timeliness of the PDP.
16Continuous Development  That a policy impact assessment (PIA) be included as a standard part of any policy process.
17Continuous Development  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.
18Continuous Development  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.
19Participation & RepresentationAs 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. 
20Alignment with ICANN’s FutureThat 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.
21Alignment with ICANN’s FutureThe 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.
22Continuous Development  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.
23Participation & RepresentationThat 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. 
24TransparencyThat all applications for new constituencies, including historic applications, be published on the ICANN website with full transparency of decision-making. 
25Participation & RepresentationThat the GNSO Council commission the development of, and implement, guidelines to provide assistance for groups wishing to establish a new Constituency.
26Transparency  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.
27Transparency  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).
28Transparency  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. 
29Continuous Development  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.
30Continuous Development  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.
31Continuous Development  That the GAC-GNSO Consultation Group on GAC Early Engagement in the GNSO Policy Development Process continue its two work streams 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.
32Participation & RepresentationThat ICANN define “cultural diversity” and that relevant metrics (encompassing geographic, gender, age group and cultural, possibly by using birth language) be monitored and published. 
33Participation & Representation  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.
34Participation & Representation  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.
35Participation & Representation  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.
36Participation & Representation  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.
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