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Summary: Internet2 (and others) organized meetings on African R&E network connectivity. Heather Boyles, Internet2 [email protected] African Research and Education Networking Meeting CERN 26-27 September, 2005. Convergence of interests, efforts.

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Summary internet2 and others organized meetings on african r e network connectivity l.jpg

Summary: Internet2 (and others) organized meetings on African R&E network connectivity

Heather Boyles, Internet2

[email protected]

African Research and Education Networking Meeting

CERN

26-27 September, 2005


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Convergence of interests, efforts African R&E network connectivity

  • Internet2 members’ interest group: extending the reach of R&E networking globally

    • Birds of a Feather (BoF) Sessions since 2002

    • Special Interest Group formed earlier this year

      • Chair: Warren Matthews, GeorgiaTech

  • Internet2-hosted workshop May 2004 on issues involving all regions

    • “Expanding the Reach of Advanced Networking”

    • http://international.internet2.edu/intl_connect/agenda.html


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Focus on African R&E networking African R&E network connectivity

  • US National Science Foundation

    • Principal Investigators for African science collaborations workshop in January 2005

      • “I.T. for Enhancing US-Africa Collaboration on the Environment”

    • Interest in funding connectivity project to R&E networks in Africa

      • Study Grant: “Extending High Bandwidth Academic and Research Networking to Africa” NSF Award #0451384

        • George Sadowsky, PI: John Mack, Don Riley co-PIs


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Focus on African R&E networking African R&E network connectivity

  • IEEAF and Internet2 organized meeting in May 2005

    • “Enhancing R&E Networking Connectivity to and within Africa”

    • http://international.internet2.edu/resources/events/2005/smmafricamtgagenda.html

  • 18 September 2005 meeting organized in conjunction with the Partnership for Higher Education in Africa, IDRC and NSRC

    • “Progress and Challenges in Building National Research and Education Networks In Africa : A View from the Field”

    • http://international.internet2.edu/resources/events/2005/2005FMMAFRICAAGENDA.html


May 05 meeting l.jpg
May ’05 Meeting African R&E network connectivity

  • Objective:

    • LEARN!

    • bring together organizations engaged in active major initiatives to improve R&E network connectivity with and within Africa

      • share plans and projects, identify opportunities for collaboration between agencies and organizations

  • Goals:

    • Stimulate communication and collaboration

    • Focus on action agendas and next steps

    • Build critical mass and momentum


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May ’05 Meeting Outcomes African R&E network connectivity

  • Learned there are many parallel, intersecting and overlapping initiatives from international and African communities

    • Opportunities for synergy

  • Strong support for NREN and regional consortia model as way to address connectivity

  • Need for capacity building on campuses

  • #1: need engagement of leaders from African institutions


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18 September Meeting African R&E network connectivity

  • Objective:

    • LEARN MORE!

    • Bring a number of leaders from African campus, NREN and regional consortia to Internet2 Member Meeting

      • Provide insight into progress and challenges

      • Engage with the global NREN community

        • Attend not only workshop but Internet2 International Task Force meeting (58 NREN organizations) and Internet2 Member Meeting


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18 Sept meeting: Overview African R&E network connectivity

  • Speakers from universities, national networking and other research and education-oriented organizations in Africa (and a few from outside Africa – Ecuador, Mexico – for additional insight)

  • Campus, national and regional/continental networking issues

  • Keynote: Aki Sawyerr, Secretary General, Association of African Universities


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Campus network session African R&E network connectivity

  • F.F. Tusubira, Makerere University, Uganda

  • Kunle Kehinde, Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Nigeria

  • Ibrahima Niang, Cheikh Anta Diop University (UCAD), Senegal

  • Enrique Pelaez, Escuela Superior Politecnica del Litoral (ESPOL), Ecuador


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Campus network – highlights African R&E network connectivitySummarized by Tusu

  • Networking must be driven by the high level motivation of learning and research

  • There has been significant progress in many African universities in establishing campus networks – but in most African countries, these remain in the minority

  • A key element of coordinated progress is a clear policy and master plan that spells out the grand long term vision that leads to phased implementation


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Campus network – cross-cutting themes/issues African R&E network connectivity

  • ICT Policy and master plan – needs to be addressed in most of the universities through supporting the development of internal capacity

  • Funding is a major challenge – there is available funding for capital expenditure. The challenge is knowledge and the ability to tap into the sources


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Campus network – cross-cutting themes/issues African R&E network connectivity

  • Capacity building across the board to continuously equip staff with information resource management skills

  • Staff retention will always be a challenge. Universities must accept their role as training grounds, training and utilising students and young graduates to provide services, and maintaining working linkages with those who leave.


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Campus network – themes/issues African R&E network connectivity

  • Sustainability is a challenge, the major component, for most universities, being bandwidth. This however extends to hardware and software. Strategies for addressing these:

    • Working through consortia to reduce costs of procurement and ownership

    • Development of capacity to use open source tools


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NRENs session African R&E network connectivity

  • Duncan Martin, TENET, South Africa

  • Victor Kyalo, KENET, Kenya

  • Aminu Ibrahim, Nigeria ICT Forum

  • Anthony Muyepa, University of Malawi College of Medicine

  • Moses Bayingana, Rwanda Information Technology Authority


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NRENs – highlights African R&E network connectivitySummarized by Victor

  • NRENs have a role to play

  • They are needed much more in developing countries where resources are scarce

  • Leverage heavily on economies of scale for:

    • Negotiating better deals

    • Mass generation of resources

    • Favorable advocacy

    • etc


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NRENs – themes/issues African R&E network connectivity

  • Institutional arrangements/frameworks

  • Challenges:

    • Capacity, infrastructure, interventions

  • Leverage on existing initiatives to achieve some wins

  • Collaboration avenues (existing and to be created)

  • Its possible and efforts will be started to achieve some progress in the next 12 months


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Regional/Continental Session African R&E network connectivity

  • Sandra Aluoch, African Virtual University

  • Isatou Jah, AfNOG (African Network Operators Group)

  • Americo Muchanga, SARUA (Southern Africa Regional Universities Association) Dark Fibre Study

  • Carlos Casasús, Cooperación Latinoamericana (CLARA)


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Regional/Continental – highlights African R&E network connectivitySummarized by Sandra

  • Partnership for Higher Education in Africa Bandwidth Consortium

  • Lease entire transponder

  • Price savings from $20 Kbps to $2.33 Kbps over past 10 years using consolidated approach


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Regional/Continental – African R&E network connectivityhighlights

  • Committed to over 51 Mbps

    • University of Dar es Salaam (Tanzania)

    • Makerere University (Uganda)

    • Eduardo Mondlane University (Mozambique)

    • University of Ghana (Ghana)

    • University of Education (Ghana)

    • Ahmadu Bello University (Nigeria)

    • Obafemi Awolowo University (Nigeria)

    • Bayero University (Nigeria)

    • University of Ibadan (Nigeria)

    • University of Jos (Nigeria)

    • University of Port Harcourt (Nigeria)

    • Association of African Universities (Ghana)

    • Kenya Education Network (Kenya)


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Next Steps African R&E network connectivity

  • Continue negotiating for lower bandwidth pricing.

  • Provide training to universities on bandwidth monitoring, control and management.

  • Pass savings to other Universities on the continent.


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18 Sept ’05 meeting: African R&E network connectivitywhat we learned

  • Incredible activity taking place in R&E networking with often times minimal resources

  • NREN model is being pursued (South Africa, Kenya, Nigeria, Rwanda, Malawi, Mozambique at least)

  • Solid basis for building R&E network connectivity within and between a number of countries


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Thanks! African R&E network connectivity

  • May ’05 meeting

    • IEEAF for co-organizing

    • Don Riley and Warren Matthews for co-chairing

  • September ’05 meeting

    • Major travel funding for participants from Africa:

      • Carnegie Corporation

      • International Development Research Centre (IDRC)

      • Rockefeller Foundation

      • Ford Foundation

      • EUMEDCONNECT

    • Workshop support:

      • Microsoft Research – Internet2 Corporate Partner

    • Webcast archive:

      • Ohio State University – Internet2 Commons NOC


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