Civil Society Involvement in ICANN: Strengthening Future Civil Society Influence in ICANN Policymaking

By Robin Gross (APC)
September 2011

ICANN occupies a unique role in that it manages a global public resource (the internet’s domain name addressing space), but it shares this responsibility between businesses, governments, and civil society participants from many nations.  It represents a unique blend of “multi-stakeholderism” governance: the different parties that will be impacted participate in the decision-making process, and policies are determined based on consensus.

This paper investigates ICANN’s processes, the role of civil society within decision-making, and highlights lessons learned from this multi-stakeholderism experiment as well as recommendations for future similar initiatives.

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