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The International Technology Alliance in Network and Information Sciences Lessons Learnt. Dinesh Verma U.S. Program Manager [email protected] 2 December 2010. Agenda. Brief Program Overview Some Technical Insights Program Management Lessons Lessons on Collaboration

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The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

The International Technology Alliancein

Network and Information Sciences

Lessons Learnt

Dinesh Verma

U.S. Program Manager

[email protected]

2 December 2010


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

Agenda

  • Brief Program Overview

  • Some Technical Insights

  • Program Management Lessons

    • Lessons on Collaboration

    • Lessons on Administration

    • Lessons on Effectiveness

2


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

Brief Program

Overview

of ITA

in

Network Sciences


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

The ITA Program

  • THE PROGRAM

  • Initiated in May 2006

    • Fundamental research in network and information sciences

    • IBM-led consortium

    • The consortium and the US/UK Governments establish an Alliance

    • 5-year program with 5-year option

  • Awarded a fundamental research agreement and two transition contracts

    • Total funding for first 5 years = $58M

    • Approximately 40-60% split industry-academia

    • Total funding for last 5 years = $40M

  • Builds on UK Defence Technology Centres and US ARL Collaborative Technology Alliances

  • COLLABORATIVE LEADERSHIP

  • UK MOD/Dstl and US Army Research Laboratory working together closely to jointly lead programme

    • Single coherent fundamental research programme

    • Involves US/UK industry, academia, and government

  • Promotes collaboration between leading industrial and academic organizations in both countries

    • Collaboratively push the state-of-the-art

    • Critical mass of researchers focused on key challenges

    • Staff rotations to deepen collaborations

    • Develop a deep understanding of how technologies can contribute to future defence capabilities

4


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

10

11

13

11

10

12

3

8

3

5

6

2

5

9

9

2

8

4

1

4

1

7

7

6

The ITA Team

  • ACADEMIA

  • Carnegie Mellon University

  • City University of New York

  • Columbia University

  • Pennsylvania State University

  • Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

  • University of California Los Angeles

  • University of Maryland

  • University of Massachusetts

  • ACADEMIA

  • Cranfield University

  • Imperial College, London

  • Royal Holloway University of London

  • University of Aberdeen

  • University of Cambridge

  • University of Southampton

  • University of York

  • INDUSTRY

  • IBM UK

  • Logica

  • Roke Manor Research

  • Systems Engineering

  • and Assessment

  • INDUSTRY

  • BBNT Solutions

  • Boeing

  • Honeywell

  • IBM Research

  • Applied Research Associates

5


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

Network Theory (TA1)

TECHNICAL AREAS

Sensor Information Processing and Delivery (TA3)

Security Across a

System-of-Systems (TA2)

Distributed Coalition

Planning and Decision Making (TA4)

ITA Areas of Investigation

GRAND CHALLENGES

  • Get the right information at the right time to coalition war-fighters

    • Before they realize they need it

    • mediation based on risk & context

  • Rapid Collaboration between coalition war-fighters

    • Share knowledge, trust and risk

    • Across cultural boundaries

6


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

Analysis of cross-layer optimizations and cooperative diversity of transmission in military networks

New Inter-Domain routing and information dissemination programs.

Energy saving topologies for sensor networks

Threshold Cryptography applied to military environments

Metadata for quality of information of sensor networks

Policy based security management for coalition ISR networks

Agile light-weight sensor fabric

Schemes for auto-calibration of sensors in the field

Sensor information access using a virtual distributed database model

Models for effective human-software agent interactions.

User-friendly ontology using constrained natural language

Selected Research Results

7


Transition activities

Transition Activities

Inter-domain Routing

Wireless Communication Methods

Security Policy

Sensor Management

Distributed Federated Database

Decision Support

Cultural Network Analysis


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

The State of the ITA

  • The ITA Program is a success

    • Embracing a New Way of Doing Business. The ITA has built strong relationships, mutual understanding, and partnerships to develop technologies for the US and UK military

    • Engaged in True Collaboration. ITA researchers from both countries have shown evidence of deep, persistent collaboration  “…an exemplar for other US/UK technical collaboration”, 2010 Peer Review Report

    • Developing Technologies to Enhance Coalition Operations

    • Accelerating Routes to Transition. Good transitions, greater opportunities are evident, transition contracts enable rapid exploitation of results

  • The ITA has achieved results that would not have been possible without the synergies gained from these robust collaborations

9


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

Trends Impacting Coalition Operations

  • Counterinsurgency operations are complex  increased emphasis on:

    • Information and analysis at lowest levels

    • Shortened decision making time-scales

    • Wider array of information sources

  • Continued growth in volume of data, especially informal information with limited structure  must transform disparate info to knowledge

  • Processing power and storage capacity increasing faster than communications capacity  must smartly position data and services within networks

  • Increased use of commercial cellular networks  hybrid networks that exploit and interoperate with commercial wireless comms is key

  • Enhancing coalition decision making depends on secure communications and information networks  must address end-to-end problem of data-to-decision (coalition)

Source: TTI Vanguard Conference - Psydex

10


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

ITA Goals for Next Five Years

  • Strategic Goals:

    • To enhance distributed, secure, and flexible decision-making for coalition operations

    • Enable the rapid and secure formation of ad hoc teams

  • Coalition Focus:

    • Develop interoperable data acquisition, processing, and management technologies

    • Enable hybrid wireless networking among coalition partners

    • Embed adaptable security in coalition networks and information services

    • Techniques to represent, position, find, and link data/information to coalition decisions

Agile Security/ Network Management

Secure Distributed Information Services

Information Representation, Aggregation, and Fusion

Hybrid Wireless Networking


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

Some

Technical Insights about

Network Sciences


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

Many Types of Networks

Social network

The Internet

Citation network

Biological network

Power grid

Highway System

13


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

What is Network Science

  • Objective:

    • science to model, analyze, predict, and control the behavior of various networks

  • Common Principles:

    • Apply across different types of networks

    • Design network that scales, adapts to constant dynamics, reacts to unpredicted events

    • Understand the linkages and interactions between different networks

Human Network

Network of

Networks

Information Networks

Computer Networks


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

ITA TECHNICAL INSIGHT ONE

HUMAN & INFORMATION NET

  • By interfacing human input to automated systems

    • One can translate unstructured natural language policies to structured computer languages

    • While capturing intent of the human

      EXAMPLE

  • Iterative refinement of security policies in coalition context

15


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

event location

sensor deployment field

tier 0

tier 0

tier 2

tier 1

tier 0

tier 0

observation field

tier 0

deployment

architecture

tier 1

tier 0

tier 0

sensor nodes

local fusion/detection nodes

system level detector

ITA TECHNICAL INSIGHT TWO

Quality of Information

  • By incorporating network characteristics in sensors

    • And combining them with time-series characteristics

    • One can identify unknown attributes of sensor information

    • And improve the quality of information received

      EXAMPLE

  • Automatic identification of misbehaving sensors

  • Automatic detection of anomalous events

16


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

Mission Planning

Operation Planning

Tactical Coalition Operation

Termination

ITA TECHNICAL INSIGHT THREE

  • Life Cycle

    • A common life-cycle model can be applied to facilitate coordination among different communities of interests

  • Different Stages

    • Mission Planning – CoIs negotiate terms and poliicies

    • Operation Planning – Desinging the right network infrasructure for communication & ISR

    • Operations – ISR networks used in tactical operations

  • Applicable in many areas

    • Any Network of Networks or System of Systems


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

Affilation/Acquaintance

Group Forming

Swarming

Human

Synchronization

LOW

Operations Center

Services

Knowledge Management

Applications

Information

Standards

Data Storage/Search/Retrieval

CURRENT KNOWLEDGE

Routed Networks

Protocols

Network Topology

Communication

Telecom Systems

HIGH

The Wireless Web

Sensors

Physical

Other Examples

  • Monitoring in Computer networks :

    • Introduce network patterns encoding temporal information of network fault events as well as topological relationships of faulty nodes

    • Use the topological information to improve the performance of network monitoring

  • Improving Information Accuracy

    • Design efficient clustering algorithm by exploiting the power-law distribution in linkages between attributes

    • Improve accuracy of citation networks by leveraging information from other networks

  • Finding Experts and Resources

    • Help to find people with specific knowledge, background, and skills via information analytics on emails, IM, etc., to automatically discover social networks

    • Deliver information proactively in a dynamic distributed federated database


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

Lessons Learnt

from

Managing

ITA Program


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

Lessons Learnt

Go for the Youth

The more things change, the more they remain the same

Program Management

Collaboration

Work matters more than Name

Beware of the Biases

Technical Vitality

A minute of listening is worth an hour of talk

The weak have their strengths

Administration

20


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

Collaboration Challenges

  • Was a key goal of program

    • Among researchers between U.S. and UK

    • Between Industry and academia

    • Between Government and non-Government

  • Time available for senior researchers is limited

  • Each Institution and PI has their personal views and research agenda

    • Differing perspectives on what is useful research

    • Personal idiosyncrasies and relationships

  • Researchers were from several different technical disciplines

    • With strong opinions on relative importance of various areas

21


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

Lesson 1: Go for the Youth

To facilitate good collaboration, leverage the graduate students at Universities and young researchers at industrial and Government agencies

CHALLENGES

  • Senior PIs are busy

  • Senior PIs have strong opinions and views on research scope and goals

  • There is never enough money to persuade a major change of focus

EXPERIENCE

  • Summer internships at a single site for students

  • Cooperation started in Summer continues for rest of the year

  • Students act as champions of program mission and collaboration

  • Students and Junior researchers gain a lot by being flexible and exploring new avenues

  • Students willing to spend more time at events like boot-camps and get-togethers.

22


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

Lesson 2: The more things change …

…the more they remain the same: There is more in common among the team members than there are differences

CHALLENGES

  • Managing Cultural Differences

  • U.S. and UK differ in processes and norms

  • Every member of the consortium has a different set of operational norms and operating practices

EXPERIENCE

  • Identify the common interests and goals

  • For ITA, the common goal was to get great papers and transitions

  • The common goals differed among different constituencies

  • Segmentation of people into groups of common goal beneficial

  • Most people look past minor differences and cultural gaffes.

23


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

Lesson 3: Work more imp. than Name

The best partners in the team are the ones who are willing to work with you, not necessarily the ones with the best reputation

CHALLENGES

  • Need to get great technical results

  • Some famous people are hard to work with

EXPERIENCE

  • Needed to drop some famous people

  • Being decisive helped improve effectiveness of program

  • Unwillingness to collaborate was most disruptive to the program

  • Some famous people self-selected themselves out

  • Others had to be dropped explicitly – with usual implications

    • But the end-result was net improvement of program

  • The bottom line:

    • Don’t be afraid to drop big names.

24


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

Lesson 4: Beware of the Biases

The research community has many stereotypes. What I learnt was that they were all absolutely incorrect.

CHALLENGES

  • Biases abound in the research community

  • Only the academics can do basic research

  • Nobody but an industrial entity can do effective transition

  • Only <this group> can do <this task>

EXPERIENCE

  • All stereotypes were just plain wrong

  • Some very good transition/code done by Universities in program

  • Some excellent academic research output from industrial researchers

  • Everyone pulled their weight in program

  • If you give clear responsibilities, and align it to people’s interests, they deliver on their promises

25


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

Lesson 5: A minute of Listening …

A minute of listening is worth an hour of talking: Listen patiently to the issues and concerns raised by partners.

CHALLENGES

  • Different perspectives of different members

  • Everyone is never happy – no matter what you do

  • Anyone can find something to complain about – if you look hard enough

EXPERIENCE

  • Listen to people’s concerns and try to understand them

  • Sometimes, people just have a need to vent

  • Once your listen to their concerns, and then explain your considerations, they frequently come to the same conclusions

  • One on one conversations are the best way to resolve concerns

  • Specially needed after strenuous periods, e.g. after program planning or evaluation results.

26


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

Lesson 6: The weak are strong too

Each collaborating member in the team has some strong point to contribute, which given a chance could be very valuable

CHALLENGES

  • There were team members with known weaknesses

  • Universities with weak research programs

  • Industries with a different emphasis that what the program required

EXPERIENCE

  • The weak members contributed in many ways

  • Universities with weakest research program were most willing to provide logistics support

  • Industry with focus on applied activities provided key transition of basic research

  • Most absent-minded professor provided key insights to address executive concerns

  • Those who are willing to work with you can contribute unexpected synergies.

27


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

Lessons Learnt

Go for the Youth

The more things change, the more they remain the same

Program Management

Collaboration

Work matters more than Name

Beware of the Biases

Technical Vitality

A minute of listening is worth an hour of talk

The weak have their strengths

Administration

28


The international technology alliance in network and information sciences lessons learnt

The

End


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