[Ccwg-auctionproceeds] Notes and action items

Daniel Dardailler danield at w3.org
Fri Apr 6 14:22:04 UTC 2018

Hello Sylvia, all

thanks for your thoughts.

> 1. I think we finally found the right wording. "In service of ICANN's
> mission" gives real meaning to what the auction proceeds funds can
> support. Great!

I agree that it is a good wording (in particular because it matches the 
by-laws wording, as I mentioned a year or so agao) but without more 
guidance on scope, like we attempted to deliver with the preamble on 
open and interoperable internet, we're leaving the scoping part of our 
work pretty much empty IMO.

I agree with the board that our preamble is a bit unclear on its 
semantics, but at least it gives future evaluators useful directions we 
all agreed on.

> 2. I think the suggestion from the board about programming
> disbursement based in tranches (3-4 years period) is common practice
> among many donors and agencies and supports the overall need of
> fine-tunning processes and procedures as the mechanism kicks off.
> Having ways to identify when things might not be working and ways to
> tackle them and incorporate corrective measurements is key. Another
> benefit of this is that those tranches could be aligned with ICANN's
> strategic planning/focus. It will be a good idea to try to align those
> tranches with whatever cycles ICANN normally goes through, so that it
> is easier to be "in service of ICANN"s mission".

I'm not sure what 3-4years refers to, one tranche ? or the entire 
duration of the full auctions benefits granting ?
If one tranche, does this mean that the board is OK with a grant agency 
setup that would last for several of these tranches, so potentially more 
than 10 years ? (five 4-year tranches is 20 years).

> 3. The evaluation of the mechanism itself and the projects it will
> support should also be sync and aligned with those programming cycles.
> Assessing impact on a 3 to 4 years framework makes a lot more sense
> than assessing projects only during their implementation period and
> final reporting requirements. Revisiting projects/organizations
> supported after a while and track how funds allocated supported their
> growth and development is a key part of assessing the real impact, and
> it is also a very good mechanism to build community, strengthen
> collaboration and have an understanding of the issues on the field. I
> just have a cautionary word of advice when defining those mechanisms,
> so that there is balance between the quantitative and the qualitative
> information collected. Anecdotal information about how "god" or "bad"
> something is will certainly not be enough, but focusing only on
> quantitative indicators is also an incomplete view of the work done. A
> key element on that evaluation/monitoring strategy is to identify the
> individuals that are behind projects /organizations supported. Most
> organization/projects that are successful are so because of the team
> behind them. Putting a face to the dollars invested, also helps to
> support leadership development, build capacity and a support network
> of peers.
> 4. Regarding the question about what is better... if funding few large
> projects or more smaller projects, I think that it will really depend
> on the areas of focus and the activities provided. There may be
> projects that will not be successful if they do not have the necessary
> budget commitment, so they might be at a disadvantage from the
> beginning. My suggestion will be that out of the first tranches to be
> explored, the mechanism allocates funding across both options, so that
> their effectiveness can also be compared -to a certain extent-.

I agree that we should be flexible to start with, but still, are we 
talking about granting 20K or 20M ? I've been in this group for more 
than a year and I still have no idea of what the group has in mind. I 
think we should set up some ranges of acceptable grants (e.g. 500K up to 
10M). It costs of a lot of grant agency resources to merely reject 
projects in all fairness, and I'm not sure we want to let this thing go 
live with the potential of folks asking 10K for their schools or 200M at 
once for rewiring Antartica, and having to read all their literature for 

I think that if we take the goal of minimizing the overhead costs 
seriously, and knowing that managing a 10M$ project is not 20 times more 
expensive than managing a 500K$ project, we'll have to come up with some 
rules on average amounts to be funded (like all granters do usually, to 
manage their project officer staff).

When are we planning to discuss these topics ? Or are these sort of 
issues moved ahead for when the grant agency/dept/partnership gets 
created ? (and become their issues ?)

> Kind regards,
> Sylvia
> ---------
> Sylvia Cadena | APNIC Foundation - Head of Programs | sylvia at apnic.net
> | http://www.apnic.foundation
> ISIF Asia, WSIS Champion on International Cooperation 2018 |
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