ICANN Meetings are a central principle of ICANN's multi-stakeholder model because they provide a venue for progressing policy work, conducting outreach, exchanging best practices, conducting business deals, interacting among members of the ICANN Community, including Board and Staff, and learning about ICANN.

Over the past several years the ICANN meetings have become increasingly complex events, and the success and growth of the Community's Global Multi-stakeholder organization has begun to introduce stresses to the current meetings model.

To effectively evolve the community's meeting strategy to accommodate the growth of the global multi-stakeholder needs, the ICANN Board in February 2013 resolved to create a multi-stakeholder working group to look into all aspects of the ICANN meetings.

The Meeting Strategy Working Group (MSWG) was a true cross community Working Group comprised of members from the At-Large Advisory Committee (ALAC), Address Supporting Organization (ASO), Country-Code Supporting Organization (ccNSO), Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC), and the Generic Names Supporting Organization (GNSO).

The MSWG developed a constructive report that made proposals for changes to ICANN Public Meetings in the following areas:

  • meeting timing
  • duration and format
  • rotation of the meeting location
  • meeting support and engagement activities
  • meeting planning

All recommendations made by the MSWG were accepted by the Board and ICANN was directed to proceed with implementation for the calendar year 2016.

Summary of Recommendations

The overall recommendations made by the MSWG are:

  • Continue the three-meeting schedule annually, but evolve the structure of the three meetings (defined as Meeting A, B, and C) to better address meeting objectives, scheduling conflicts and to use the time in a most effective way.
  • Continue regional rotation for all meetings and coordinate rotation to balance global coverage on a multi-year cycle, but evolve the rotation strategy to take advantage of the smaller mid-year meeting (Meeting B) to rotate through new geographic locations previously unavailable to the meetings due to the attendance and logistical requirements of the current meeting structure. See the calendar and regional rotation for future meetings.
  • Continue to allocate adequate time for SO/AC work, but evolve the format of the meetings to afford greater opportunity for cross-community engagement and outreach.
  • Continue with the public forum at the first and third meetings in the cycle, but evolve the format by splitting the time into two portions with differing focus.

Meeting Format


• 1st meeting in the three-meeting annual cycle
• Duration is six (6) total days
• Format is similar to the current ICANN Meeting, with exception of the revised format for the Public Forum  


• 2nd meeting in the three-meeting annual cycle
• Duration is four (4) total days
• Format focused on SO/AC/SG/C policy work and outreach
NO welcome ceremony, high-interest topics, public forum, public board meeting, sponsor exhibition area

Example list of sessions which will NOT take place at the Policy Forum: ICANN53 SCHEDULE: POLICY FORUM SESSIONS  


•3rd meeting in the three-meeting annual cycle
•Duration of seven (7) total days
•Focus on showcasing ICANN's work to a broader global audience


Balanced Global Coverage on a Multi-Year Cycle

Five (5) Year Overview of the Next Fifteen (15) ICANN Meetings