[council] On the use of 'fairness'
avri at acm.org
Fri Aug 26 10:08:37 UTC 2005
On 26 aug 2005, at 11.15, Philip Sheppard wrote:
> So the question of fairness becomes:
> What is the relevance of fairness to effectiveness?
Well it might also have relevance to the first question. In order to
know whether GNSO has a purpose, one must be able to define that
purpose. And whether it is a body capable of fairness and is a
component of overall ICANN fairness would seem, to me, to be
In terms of effectiveness, I think fairness is something that always
must temper effectiveness. By some definitions of effectiveness one
could be very effective yet unfair. This, it seems to me, would not
be a good thing. So when we are looking for ways to judge, or to
increase effectiveness, we must take the fairness of the process into
account. E.g. it would be very efficient, and hence effective by
some definitions, for the GNSO council chair to make all decisions
unilaterally and to pass them on to the board. But would that have
been fair to the constituencies and the rest of the community? Now,
one could use a different definition of effectiveness, and argue that
these decisions might not be effective because they would be
challenged by those who had been left out of the process, ie. those
who thought the process to have been unfair - so in this case
fairness may be defined as an essential ingredient for true
effectiveness. Likewise if it comes time to consider a new
constituency, the notion of fairness would enter the discussion in
terms of deciding whether this population was unable to participate
due to its lack of a represented constituency. i.e whether they had a
fair opportunity to participate in the decision making process.
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