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Call for nominations: IETF Liaison to ICANN Board of Directors

11 Jun 2024, 8:45 p.m.
The IAB is tasked to appoint a liaison to represent the IETF on the ICANN Board of Directors. This is a call for nominations for that position. The nomination period will close at 23:59 UTC on Tuesday, 2024-07-09.

The liaison normally serves a two-year renewable term. The IAB plans to name the liaison to serve for the 2024-2026 period by the end of August with the seating of the liaison to be completed by ICANN 81 in November. Harald Alvestrand has served as the IETF Liaison to the ICANN Board of Directors since 2018, and has indicated that he is willing to continue in the role.

The ICANN Mission and the role of the Board of Directors are outlined in the Board Governance Guidelines:

The Mission of ICANN is to ensure the stable and secure operation of   the Internet's unique identifier systems. The fundamental   responsibility of Directors (as defined below) is to exercise their   business judgment to act in what they reasonably believe to be the   best interests of ICANN and for the benefit of the Internet community   as a whole. Actions of the Board should reflect the Board's   collective action after taking due reflection.
It is the duty of the Board to oversee management's performance to   ensure that ICANN in accordance with law efficiency and   effectiveness, in a fiscally responsible and accountable manner.  The   Board is also responsible for overseeing the development of ICANN's   Operating Plan and Strategic Plan (each as defined in the Bylaws).

The position for an IETF liaison to the board is non-voting.

The IETF liaison to the ICANN Board is responsible for staying up-to-date on ICANN operations and developments and informing the IAB and the relevant parts of the IETF community of their potential impact on IETF work and Internet protocols. The IETF liaison is also responsible for informing ICANN of any IETF matters relevant to ICANN. The IAB expects the selected person to effectively communicate between the two organizations. The IETF liaison must have a sufficient understanding of the Internet protocols, DNS, and assigned number management to identify where potential problems might occur or where coordination is needed. When needed, the liaison should be able to identify and call on experts on specific issues on both sides.

The IAB expects the IETF liaison to:

  • be constructive in framing new approaches, technically or in terms of communication.
  • be willing and able to work well with others.
  • understand the role and purpose of the relationship the IETF has with ICANN.
  • be willing and able to commit the time to work in the board, and follow the related discussions.
  • attend and participate in ICANN meetings as well as any additional board meetings. Generally, there are 3 ICANN meetings and 3 board workshops per year. ICANN typically covers travel costs for board members.
  • attend and participate in IETF meetings, particularly the working group meetings relevant to work at ICANN. Generally, there are 3 face-to-face IETF meetings per year.
  • abide by all ICANN Board policies, including confidentiality and conflict of interest policies. The IETF liaison should be unlikely to have conflicts of interest related to typical board discussion topics.

The necessary time commitment varies with the extent of work that the liaison is interested in taking on within the board, but just the travel and meeting time alone can be substantial. Typically, there are three ICANN meetings and three additional board meetings per year.

For context, the governance documents for the ICANN board can be found on the ICANN website.

These include, for instance, overall governance guidelines, the ICANN bylaws, conflict of interest policies, and travel support.

Note that as per Section 7.22.h of the ICANN Bylaws, this position may be entitled to receive compensation from ICANN for services as a non-voting liaison; however, as per the IAB statement on Liaison Compensation, the IAB generally believes that the guiding principle should be that individuals serve without expectation of direct compensation from the bodies to which they are appointed, so as to avoid any appearance of conflict of interest. As a result, apart from reasonable travel expenses, the IAB generally requests that its appointees decline offers of compensation from the bodies to which they are appointed. 

The current board can be found on the ICANN website.

The current meeting schedules of the board and ICANN itself are also available online.

If you are interested in this position, or know of someone who may be a good fit for this position, please send the name and email address to with a copy to by 23:59 UTC on 2024-07-09.