The GovLab Selected Readings on Mapping the Internet Governance Ecosystem

As part of an ongoing effort to build a knowledge base for the field of opening governance by organizing and disseminating its learnings,  the GovLab Selected Readings series provides an annotated and curated collection of recommended works on key opening governance topics. The Governance Lab @NYU (GovLab) cross-posts weekly on CGCS’s Internet Policy ObservatoryThis edition of selected readings explores the literature on Mapping the Internet Governance Ecosystem, the original post can be found here.

Internet governance has the following generally accepted (although by no means uncontroversial) working definition drafted during the World Summit on the Information Society in Tunis in 2005: “the development and application by governments, the private sector and civil society, in their respective roles, of shared principles, norms, rules, decision-making procedures, and programmes that shape the evolution and use of the Internet.” Internet governance is often described as occurring within an “ecosystem” of institutions organized inregional, national, and global “layers” of governance. Internet governance issues are also described as “layered” – for example, the technical layer comprises elements like servers, infrastructure and protocols, while the the non-technical layer comprises issues like intellectual property rights and security. Further complicating the Internet space are the many important distinctions and interactions between the roles and responsibilities of the various Internet governance actors, like the UNICANN and the over one hundred local Internet Society chapters, to name a few.

The introduction to this Selected Reading pauses to take note of…

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The GovLab Selected Curation of Articles on Net-Governance: Issue 21

The Selected Curation of Articles on Net-Governance (the SCAN) is a weekly digest on Internet governance news, reports, and events produced by the Governance Lab @NYU (the GovLab) as part of the GovLab’s Living Labs on Smarter Governance project. The SCAN is cross-posted weekly from the GovLab on the Internet Policy Observatory. The original posting of the GovLab SCAN- Issue 21, April 4, 2014 can be found here.

This week’s highlights:

  • ICANN 49 had as one of its focus topics the IANA transition, for which ICANN presented a framework of each of the IANA functions, as well as the actors who create policy for those functions, as well as the actors that actually implement those function, and finally the actors that ensure the accountability and oversight for those functions. This transition framework has prompted a wide range of discussion regarding the roles of different actors around the IANA functions, and in particular the role of ICANN.
  • With the NETMundial Meeting in Brazil fast approaching (it begins on April 23rd), a variety of commentators have published reports calling for specific topics and issues to be focused on in the meeting agenda. In particular, there is a widespread desire to separate principles from practice, so that discussions are not just theoretical but also focus on the real concerns of real actors.
  • Fadi Chehadé, President of ICANN, Lawrence Strickling, NTIA Administrator, and some other leaders in the Internet governance space testified this week in front of the U.S. House Commerce Subcommittee on Communications and Technology, presenting a wide range of viewpoints on the NTIA announcement from March 14th.
  • There are several high-level groups currently working on new Internet and broadband-related legislation, most notably the EU which is pushing for a new data privacy law that covers all of its member states, and the UN, which recently published a report overviewing U.S. surveillance practices in light of…

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The GovLab Selected Curation of Articles on Net-Governance: Issue 20

The Selected Curation of Articles on Net-Governance (the SCAN) is a weekly digest on Internet governance news, reports, and events produced by the Governance Lab @NYU (the GovLab) as part of the GovLab’s Living Labs on Smarter Governance project. The SCAN is cross-posted weekly from the GovLab on the Internet Policy Observatory. The original posting of the GovLab SCAN- Issue 20, March 28, 2014 can be found here.

This week’s highlights:

  • The U.S. government announcement regarding transitioning oversight structures for ICANN and for the IANA functions continues to generate a great deal of coverage and discussion around the world. Notably, there is a marked divide in opinion around the transition –for example, leaders of most technical organizations have embraced the announcement, while U.S. republicans are actively seeking ways to prevent the transition from happening too quickly, or from happening at all.
  • ICANN held its 49th meeting this week in Singapore. Important topics included the design of a transition plan for the oversight of ICANN and the IANA functions; the outputs of the ICANN Strategy Panels and how these will inform ICANN’s 5-Year Strategic Plan; and various issues related to ICANN’s new gTLD program.
  • Brazil passed the Marco Civil da Internet, a so-called “Bill of Rights for the Internet”, which includes provisions on the collection of citizen metadata, data-storage practices, and net-neutrality requirements for Internet Service Providers in Brazil.
  • Several articles, reports, and videos highlight a growing theme in discussions around Internet governance: the dual-nature of how Internet technologies can be…

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The GovLab Selected Curation of Articles on Net-Governance: Issue 19

The Selected Curation of Articles on Net-Governance (the SCAN) is a weekly digest on Internet governance news, reports, and events produced by the Governance Lab @NYU (the GovLab) as part of the GovLab’s Living Labs on Smarter Governance project. The SCAN is cross-posted weekly from the GovLab on the Internet Policy Observatory. The original posting of the GovLab SCAN- Issue 19, March 21, 2014 can be found here.

This Week’s Highlights:

  • Last week, the United States government, through the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) of the Department of Commerce, released an official announcement declaring its intention to transition away from being the steward of the Domain Name System through contract with ICANN. The NTIA has called on ICANN to “convene the global multistakeholder community in crafting a transition plan. The GovLab has compiled a special side-issue of the SCAN that deals exclusively with this announcement.
  • ICANN49 in Singapore will begin this Sunday (March 23). The agenda includes general Supporting Organization/Advisory Committee policy-development activities, although there is also a heavy focus on global Internet governance (the crafting of a transition plan), ICANN’s strategic planning process and the Strategy Panels, and also ICANN’s global stakeholder engagement activities.
  • The European Parliament has adopted a new Data Protection Reform Package that specifies rules for how Internet companies collect and use European citizens’ data. Many are praising this as a standard-setting move for digital privacy rights around the globe. However, others recognize that such legislation can produce confusion and contradiction for Internet companies that operate globally in…

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