Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN)

Subject: Public sector user participation in the membership of the ICANN and its related Supporting Organisations.

The public sector utilisation of the Internet comprises

use of the Internet by local, regional and central government authorities;

use of the Internet by education, research, health and cultural organisations among many others.

use of the Internet to provide access to public services by the public at large.

Public sector utilisation of the Internet is a substantial element in overall present and future Internet Usage. World Wide Web penetration of public services is increasing rapidly. Public sector organisations of all kinds are investing substantial human and financial resources in the development of their Internet based information services.

Use of the Internet by the public sector gives rise to particular requirements with respect to the Naming and Numbering aspects of Internet management, including:

the price and availability of Internet Names and Numbers;

use of the address space employed by the public sector;

respect for the identity of national, regional and local names of places and organisations;

use of multiple languages and character sets;

questions of scaleability of access to the Internet from the point of view of the meaningful and transparent designation of public services and the ability of the public services to address members of the public through the Internet, and vice-versa.

Consequently, a significant stakeholder community can be identified in the following general areas:

Governmental (central, regional and local) users;

Commercial and administrative use of the Internet by the non-Governmental public sector and public services;

Universities, Research Institutes and Schools;

Hospitals, clinics and other health facilities;

Museums, Libraries and other custodians of the cultural heritage.

It is accordingly proposed that an appropriate Membership category be created in the ICANN and in its Supporting Organisations and particularly in the DNSO to accommodate the interests of this important group of Internet stakeholders world-wide.