[CCWG-ACCT] An mplication of accountability models being discussed

Avri Doria avri at acm.org
Sat Jul 11 15:56:30 UTC 2015


On 10-Jul-15 13:13, George Sadowsky wrote:
> Here's the question: Does the CCWG believe that the global public interest is _always_ defined by "community" consensus or "community" dictates?    Yes or no?  I believe that the great majority of the time the two are consistent, but I believe that there are cases in which they diverge.   Is there any disagreement among us that this could happen?  In that case, what should a Board member do?  Which is the higher authority according to the CCWG's thinking?

It is difficult to know what a group as diverse as the CCWG thinks,
especially before it reaches its consensus point.  I have a better
chance describing what I think.

If you are asking about a perfect form of the global public interest,
no, I cannot say that community consensus always defines a perfect
expression of the global public interest. But adherence to the community
consensus reached through adherence to the  policy development process,
which includes global outreach for comment and detailed response to the
comment, is the best method we have found for discovering the global
public interest.  It may not be the perfect form of the global public
interest, but we can at least be satisficed that it is as close as we
are going to get at that moment in time.  This is contingent on several
things including ever improving our outreach and inclusion of diverse
participants, constant improvement of our policy development process,
and maximizing our accountabilty and transparency mechanisms.

In terms of dealing with possible divergences, the Board has an
important role within that part of the process.  A role that is not
satisfied by making a decision to void the results of the process.  The
Board most important role is assuring that the process was followed. 
That process includes the need to find a consensus point that responds
to the needs and requirements set by the multiplicity of stakeholders. 
When the Board finds a divergence that has not been previously worked
through and documented, or an apparent divergence, it has a
responsibility to insure that the issues in that divergence are, or have
been, properly dealt with.  Not by remaking the decisions and not by
forcing other decisions on the stakeholders.  Rather it has the
responsibility to bring those who have the divergence together so that
they can understand each others issues and can work to find some
accommodation.  But changes in recommendation subsequent to finding
those accommodations, must still be made by the SO responsible for
making the recommendation.  The Board can approve, disapprove, question
and even send back for further work on unanswered issues, but except for
temporarily in genuine emergencies, it should not become an arbiter of
the public interest.  For that the Board must trust in the
multistakeholder development processes to do the best possible job, but
must also be serious in its oversight of that process.

So while the Board is, or should be, the highest authority in protecting
the process, the community by full engagement of the policy development
process is the highest authority on the best possible repsonse to the
needs and requirements of the global public interest. It is up to the
Board to recognize it when we get to that point and to help the
community understand when it isn't at that point.


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