Adopted standards

round grey Conventions

round grey Other instruments

round grey Internet Governance Strategy 2012-2015

Council of Europe Action

round grey Protecting the Internet’s universality, integrity and openness

round grey Maximising rights and freedoms for Internet users

round grey Advancing privacy and data protection

round grey Enhancing the rule of law and effective cooperation against cybercrime

round grey Maximising the Internet’s potential to promote democracy and cultural diversity

round grey Protecting and empowering children and young people

Internet Governance "Forums"

round grey EURODIG

round grey IGF


Information Society and Action against Crime Directorate


Council of Europe triggers debate on ICANN & Human Rights

The Council of Europe facilitated the preparation of a report by Dr Monika Zalnieriute and Thomas Schneider on ICANNs procedures and policies in the light of human rights, fundamental freedoms and democratic values. The opinions expressed in the report are the opinions of the experts and do not engage the responsibility of the Council of Europe. The report was presented during the ICANN50 meeting in London that took place from 22 to 26 June 2014. It aims at catalysing community discussion on human rights and internet governance. It is expected that the debate continues at ICANN51. During the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) in Istanbul from 2-5 September 2014, a side meeting will be held on the report, to present the report to the public at large and have an open and inclusive dialogue and exchange of ideas. We welcome comments on the report below to enrich the debate.

The Global Multistakeholder Meeting on the Future of Internet Governance (NETmundial,Sao Paolo, Brazil, 23 and 24 April 2014) held by consensus that the Internet is a global resource which should be managed in the public interest, and that states have primary legal and political accountability to protect human rights. In this connection, there is a need to examine ICANNs policies and procedures in terms of its service in the global public interest and its accountability. The report is not intended to be comprehensive, but aims at being a starting point for discussion.

ICANN report

Main findings of the report

Way forward

As the role of ICANN in the field of internet governance is increasing, its responsibility and accountability have to grow. A more attentive approach towards human rights could help to create an accountable and transparent way of doing business. Therefore the authors recommend to:


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