Contributed by Kathryn Anthonisen, Vice President, External Relations
Another very successful TNC Global Research & Education (R&E) Networking conference just wrapped up in Prague, and I was fortunate to attend and represent Canada along with my CANARIE colleagues. The conference content ran the gamut from highly technical sessions on software-defined networking, interactive science education models, and cybersecurity, to more personal sessions reflecting on the impact of Internet on society. Among hundreds of speakers and panel sessions, and the many, many side meetings that occur with so many R & E networking professionals in one place, there was literally something for everyone.
Over 700 participants from 65 countries attended the conference, hosted by GÉANT. GÉANT is the pan-European R&E network that connects its partner National Research and Education Networks (NRENs) in each EU country, much the way CANARIE provides interprovincial and international connectivity to our provincial and territorial partner networks here in Canada.
But no matter where you were at the TNC, there was a tangible demonstration of the
ethos that governs global National Research and Education Networks:
collaboration, communication and community.
TNC provides the opportunity for CANARIE to strengthen collaborations with its international R & E network partners. CANARIE discussions at TNC focussed on the evolution of global network architectures, collaborating on public relations and communications projects, and sharing technical and process strategies to enable safe, secure access to distributed data and tools. And of course, success in these collaborations sets the stage for more in the future…
In addition to providing us with an opportunity to pursue focussed conversations with our global colleagues, we were also able to provide the broader audience with a view of how CANARIE is slightly different than most NRENs. The talk from our President and CEO, Jim Ghadbane, on CANARIE and its role in building Canada’s digital economy was very well-received. See for yourself here – Jim’s session starts 30 minutes in:
The global NREN community is unique. It’s a fantastic mash-up of brilliant technical minds with visionary thinkers who have literally shaped research and education networks from their infancy – witness two TNC speakers, Kees Neggers and Eric Huizer, who are Internet Hall of Fame inductees. The closing keynote speaker, John Sexton, former President of NYU, was eloquent in his description of how the global community of NRENs supports thousands of research and education communities, and that this “community of communities” has a critical role to play in the ongoing development of human society. Have a look at what else John had to say here:
A great week of collaboration, communication and community – all in service of driving new ways to deliver on the promise of the digital revolution.