The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), has appointed Samiran Gupta as the new Head of India. In his new role, Gupta will be ICANN’s primary representative in the country and will also be responsible for all stakeholder engagements. Gupta assumed his new role on the 22nd of September from Delhi and will report directly to VP and MD for Asia Pacific, Keuk Yu-Chuang.
Gupta, who previously worked at APCO Worldwide, has over 20 years of experience in business strategy and economic, political and regulatory analysis. Prior to APCO, he was the founder and managing director of Access India Advisors Limited, where he worked for over 15 years with various international corporate advisory and public affairs clients. Additionally, he is also experienced in regulatory and government affairs strategies for clients in sectors like entertainment, telecom, payment systems, social media, energy and renewables and e-commerce.
Interestingly, in April this year, India had opposed the proposal to reform ICANN at the Global Multi-Stakeholder Meeting on the Future of Internet Governance (NETmundail) in Brazil. The proposal would retain ICANN’s contractual affiliations to the US Department of Commerce but ‘transition’ key domain name function to the ‘global multi-stakeholder community’. India however, rejected the ‘multi-stakeholder’ approach to the internet instead asking for an ‘intergovernmental organization’ or a ‘multilateral’ approach to the problem. It is likely Gupta will be responsible for solving this conflict with the government.