[Internal-cg] Consensus building process

Drazek, Keith kdrazek at verisign.com
Mon Aug 11 16:18:11 UTC 2014

I agree that we will need a clear process for determining consensus that falls somewhere on the spectrum between humming and requiring a unanimous vote.

If we get in to discussions of voting, we'll also need to address the thresholds required to establish consensus. Is it a simple majority? Super-majority?  Unanimous voting is an unhelpful requirement that would likely obstruct our work and our ability to deliver, so I believe that should be a non-starter for the ICG. We need to avoid the possibility of one dissenting vote undermining an otherwise strongly supported recommendation that represents broad community consensus. 

However, if/when there is not full consensus, it will be important that we have a mechanism for expressing dissenting opinions. The GNSO Registries Stakeholder Group employs a "minority statement" mechanism to allow for all views to be expressed when there is consensus but not unanimity on a particular topic. Perhaps we should consider a similar mechanism for the ICG.


-----Original Message-----
From: internal-cg-bounces at icann.org [mailto:internal-cg-bounces at icann.org] On Behalf Of Subrenat, Jean-Jacques
Sent: Monday, August 11, 2014 6:09 AM
To: Kavouss Arasteh
Cc: Coordination Group
Subject: Re: [Internal-cg] Consensus building process

Hello Colleagues,

From the experience of the past few weeks, unfortunately we can conclude that the current process is not successful. Rather than meting out blame or praise, we need to understand why it's not working. Group dynamics and a bit of sociology can help.

Our Coordination Group is different from what some of us/you have come to consider as "normal". The technical bodies (IETF, IAB) have developed an efficient process where "rough consensus" is understood and accepted. But other components of the ICG have different habits, and also a different accountability mechanism: however attractive "rough" may be, it is insufficient. For example, the GAC has its own rules (a joint position can only be reached by unanimity), and the ALAC routinely conducts all its votes on a full-membership basis (each member has to say ay, nay, abstain, or be noted down as not having cast a vote).

So the challenge is this: is the "rough consensus" really adapted to all the needs of our group? With the experience gained collectively in London, and especially since then, I would recommend a dual approach:

A/ MATTERS REQUIRING ALL MEMBERS TO VOTE (typically, to be decided as soon as possible, with the exception of our Transition plan)
   - Chair structure and membership,
   - Charter of the ICG,
   - choice of Secretariat (ICANN or outside of ICANN, or a mixture of both),
   - choice of near-final drafts and approval of final draft of our Transition plan, before presentation to the NTIA.

   - Appraisal of specific community input, as a contribution to the ICG's recommended plan (e.g. ALAC should appraise input from its own community before submitting it to the whole ICG),
   - external relations and communications of the ICG (once the Chair structure has been chosen and populated, it may wish to ask Chair, or another of its members, to be the point of contact),
   - administrative & logistic matters, in conjunction with the chosen Secretariat (here too, delegation would be possible).

I'm prepared to provide a more detailed proposal for the above items.

Best regards,

----- Mail original -----
De: "Kavouss Arasteh" <kavouss.arasteh at gmail.com>
À: "Patrik Fältström" <paf at frobbit.se>
Cc: "Coordination Group" <internal-cg at icann.org>
Envoyé: Lundi 11 Août 2014 10:40:08
Objet: Re: [Internal-cg] Consensus building process

Dear Wolf
Thank you very much for reply
My point is that if one or more ICG Mmember(s) is7are againszt the ruling of the Chir ,They could raise their issue and the matter must be settled by simple explanation or if not resolved by voting . I.E. CHAIR DOES NOT HAVE DECISION MAKING POWER ON HE OR HIS OWN WISHES RATHER TO TAKE INTO ACCOUNT VIEWS OF MEMBERS Regards KAVOUSS Regards 

2014-08-11 8:33 GMT+02:00 Patrik Fältström < paf at frobbit.se > : 

On 11 aug 2014, at 08:09, WUKnoben < wolf-ulrich.knoben at t-online.de > wrote: 

> The chair’s designation that consensus is reached is not her/his own decision rather than a wrap-up of extensive discussions. Of course this designation can be challenged by members. And this is what triggers your question about “If several participants in the ICG disagree with the designation given ...”. I’m open to any helpful suggestion on how we could procede in such a case. 
> In the end consensus - as defined – has to be achieved. 

Let me emphasize what you say here, which I strongly agree with. 

We must deliver. 

This implies we must be able to reach consensus. 

The last couple of weeks discussions on various topics makes me a bit pessimistic on the ability for us to reach consensus, but I am optimistic, always optimistic, on peoples ability and interest in actually deliver. 

Remember that the chair is calling on the consensus question, not the substance. That way the power of the chair is decreased to a minimum and process issues. 


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