Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN)

ICANN was founded by the US government in 1998. It is responsible for the management of critical Internet resources, in particular the domain name system (DNS) and IP addresses and parameters. In September 2016, ICANN became independent of the US government and reconstituted itself as a multistakeholder organisation based on an empowered community. The new organisation is headed by a Board of Directors composed of 16 directors. Six of them are appointed by the Supporting Organisations (Sos) of ICANN and eight by a Nominating Committee (NomCom). The At-Large Advisory Committee, which represents the users, also sends a director. The chair of the Board is elected by the Board of Directors. Governments and other advisory committees (ACs) are represented by liaisons. The position of President and CEO is held by Göran Marby from Sweden since 2016.

  • Individual questions regarding the management of domain names and IP addresses are discussed by three Supporting Organisations (SOs): the ccNSO for the management of country domains (ccTLDs), the GNSO for the management of domains with generic names (gTLDs) and the ASO (Address Supporting Organisation) for the management of IP addresses.
  • The various stakeholder groups are represented by four Advisory Committees (ACs): governments (Governmental Advisory Committee/GAC), users (At-Large Advisory Committee/ALAC), root server operators (Root Server System Advisory Committee/RSSAC), technical community (Security and Stability Advisory Committee/SSAC).
  • A subsidiary of ICANN, PTI (Public Technical Identifers), manages the so-called IANA functions, i.e. it operates the database with the 1000+ zone files for Top Level Domains and supervises the “A” root server.


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