Global Policy State in RIPE PDP
Summary of Proposal:
This proposal modifies the RIPE Policy Development Process to create a new state that is specific to global policies. This state is "Accepted pending consensus in other RIR communities." This allows a global policy to be further discussed in the event that modifications are made in other RIR communities after it was already accepted in RIPE.
[Following text is to appear in the RIPE Policy document, Policy Development Process in RIPE (ripe-470) if the proposal reaches consensus.]
2.1 Creating a Proposal
- Accepted pending consensus in other RIR communities: Meaning that this proposal is a global policy proposal that has gained consensus in the RIPE PDP, but has not yet reached consensus in all of the other RIR communities.
2.4 Concluding Phase
In the specific case of consensus for a global policy proposal that has not yet
reached consensus in all other RIR communities, the proposal will be kept in the state "Accepted pending consensus in other RIR communities." If the global policy proposal reaches consensus in all of the other RIR communities, then the proposal will be automatically considered "Accepted" in RIPE.
The RIPE NCC will make the necessary announcements and the implementation.
If the global policy proposal does not reach consensus or a substantial change is made on the proposal in one (or more) of the other RIR communities after the proposal was put in "Accepted pending consensus in other RIR communities" in RIPE, all the RIPE WG Chairs as a group will determine how to proceed. They can decide to withdraw the proposal or send it back to one of the previous phases of the RIPE PDP with or without a new version of the proposal.
If the global policy proposal fails to receive acceptance at the end of the global policy development process that is evaluated by the ASO Address Council (can be due to having substantial differences in the proposed text in different RIR communities or due to that the proposal failed to reach consensus in one of the RIR communities) then the proposal will be withdrawn automatically in RIPE too. The RIPE NCC will make the necessary announcements.
The proposer (or anyone else) is free to return the proposal to the WG for a new round of discussion.
a. Arguments supporting the proposal
Global Policy Proposals must be accepted in all RIR communities before they can be implemented. Often, the discussion takes place in parallel in all communities, and modifications made in one community must be adopted in others too.
At present, if RIPE accepts a global policy proposal but the proposal is subsequently changed in other communities, then the policy process must be restarted in its entirety. This lengthens the process of adopting the policy in all communities.
The RIPE policy development process at present requires that consensus is reached in the RIPE community before a policy is adopted, and gives the opportunity to the proposer to return a policy to discussion, review or last call in the case where modifications are still needed. It is proposed to extend this facility to the proposer where the policy has been adopted in RIPE but not yet in all other RIR communities.
The benefits are that the RIPE community may speedily adopt a global policy proposal if it wishes, and that doing so will not delay the process of establishing consensus if further modifications are requested in other RIR communities.
Any other approach (e.g. wait until the policy is already approved in other RIR communities, or have a fast track process for subsequent changes) appears to treat changes that have appeared before RIPE adopted the proposal differently to changes that have appeared after that date. That implies that the RIPE process itself is made dependent in some way on the other RIR communities; this proposal removes that dependency and allows RIPE community to conduct its own process at its own speed, with the assurance that there is no impediment to returning to an earlier phase of the process should that be required.
b. Arguments Opposing the Proposal
There are other approaches to this same problem.
We could decline to make any change and continue to require that global policy proposals adopted by RIPE must be resubmitted as new proposals if modifications are required. This removes the benefits described above, but does ensure that any changes that are proposed from other RIR communities after RIPE has already adopted the proposal will get the full rigour of the policy development process.
We could change the PDP to require that global policy proposals are only formally adopted once the same text has reached its final stage in all RIR communities. This removes some of the benefits described above (namely that RIPE can no longer speedily adopt non-controversial policies, and it does not make the RIPE process independent of the other RIR communities) but it avoids introducing a new and different state to the process, and instead requires a change in how the process is conducted.