ICANN’s distinctive multistakeholder model brings together community members with different backgrounds and interests to work towards a joint goal: to ensure the security and stability of the Internet’s unique identifier systems. Due to the presence of so many different opinions and interests within ICANN’s policy-making structure, courtesy and collaboration are key. ICANN Community Excellence Award recognizes those ICANN participants who have deeply invested in consensus-based solutions and in the importance of ICANN’s multistakeholder model to Internet governance.

Next Steps:

Selected award recipients will be presented once a year starting at ICANN 50 in London. Community members are critical to ICANN’s success, and ICANN is committed to recognizing them for their efforts through ICANN Community Excellence Award.

Background Documentation:

Public Comment

First Announcement

Blog Post


ICANN Community Excellence Award recognizes ICANN participants who have deeply invested in consensus-based solutions, acknowledging the importance of ICANN’s multistakeholder model of Internet governance, and contributed in a substantive way to the higher interests of ICANN’s organization and its community. The ideal recipient(s) will have served in roles in multiple ICANN working groups or committees and collaborated with more than one Supporting Organization and/or Advisory Committee in a significant capacity. The recipient(s) will also have been participant(s) in ICANN for at least five years. A panel of community members representing each SO/AC based on the award criteria selects recipients annually (up to two panelists per SO/AC).

Program Details:


Annual, given at ICANN Public Meetings (first award given at ICANN50 in London); Target Meeting is Meeting B during informal welcome ceremony by David Olive.

Number of award recipients:

1 to 2 – decision made by Community Evaluation Panel


At least five years as active participant(s) in ICANN community.


Candidates will be evaluated by a panel of community members appointed by the Chairs of each SO and AC using a merit-based point system evaluated against three criteria:

  1. Demonstrated ability to work across community lines with both familiar and unfamiliar ICANN Stakeholders with the aim of consensus building and collaboration that substantiate ICANN’s multistakeholder model
  2. Facilitator of dialogue and open discussion in a fair and collegial manner, through the spirit of collaboration as shown through empathy and demonstrating a sincere desire to engage with people from other backgrounds, cultures, and interests 
  3. Demonstrated additional devotional factors exhibited by time spent supporting ICANN's multistakeholder model and its overall effectiveness through volunteer service via working groups or committees 


All nominations must include detailed information as to why each nominee meets the three (3) award criteria, including any further documentation as required to ensure that even panelists who are not familiar with a nominee would be prepared to evaluate all nominations. Nominators may be called upon by SO/AC Panelists to provide further information regarding the nominees during their deliberations (via teleconference).

Selection process:

A panel of representatives from each SO/AC (usually 8-10 panelists, 2 per SO/AC) will convene upon the closure of the nomination period and deliberate on the nominees and proceed to select recipient(s) using a consensus driven approach against the award criteria, their knowledge of each nominee’s contributions to ICANN’s multistakeholder model, and information included on the nominations. The process will include polls facilitated by staff against the award criteria to narrow the pool of candidates, official votes for final candidates with recipients selected based on consensus where possible.

Evaluation panel composition:

Two representatives per SO/AC, preferably with panelists not serving on the panel more than two consecutive terms. The purpose/role of the two representatives per SO/AC is to deliberate on nominees throughout the selection process to identify the recipient(s) for the award. Panelists’ roles include providing further information and background on nominees from their communities or other communities to the rest of the panel to facilitate the selection process. Panelists’ roles will therefore include presenting information based on their knowledge of each candidate for the rest of the panel to consider, maintaining neutrality and with the aim of selecting the best recipient for the award based on the nominations against the award criteria.

Staff Support:

Staff provides the Evaluation Panel support during the deliberations by facilitating the calls and holding the “Chair” role throughout the process and as advisor for the panel to ensure the Award Criteria is met, and the Award process is followed. Staff maintains the ICANN Community Excellence Award Wiki Space, takes notes during each call as required, and sets up votes/polls as requested during the selection process. Staff coordinates with other departments as necessary for the award ceremony.

Recognition elements:

Awards given at ICANN Public Meetings, preferably Meeting B, during the informal opening with an opportunity to give short remarks. Photo and biography included on ICANN website and on dedicated ICANN Community Excellence Award Wiki space.

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