R&E activity is global, and this is reflected in the fact that 25% of the R&E traffic that crosses the GÉANT backbone has either a source or destination outside Europe. Therefore, for GÉANT to meet the connectivity needs of its Members’ users, intercontinental connectivity must be an important part of GÉANT’s network infrastructure planning.
GÉANT continuously works to improve its global connectivity to meet traffic demands, avoid bottlenecks and maximise diversity. This is done via a collaborative and federated approach, through a combination of capacity owned and operated by GÉANT together with capacity provided by or in collaboration with international and/or European RENs. This approach aims to ensure sufficient capacities. with redundancy enabled through coordinated route planning and mutual back-up arrangements.
Specific examples of how supply and capacity have been secured on a selection of routes of interest to the GÉANT Community are CAE-1 (to Asia-Pacific), IRUs for links to China procured in collaboration with CERNET and CSTNET respectively and BELLA (Latin America, a successful demonstrator of new commercial model for securing long-term intercontinental connectivity (IC).
The success of these examples has not gone unnoticed and feeds into negotiations between GÉANT and the EC for IC funding opportunities that will help the EC achieve European political ambitions for open digital autonomy. It is to be noted that these opportunities will have an impact on GÉANT in late 2021 and into 2022 and beyond.
In GN5 funding for IC will be provided with GN5-IC1. However, there is also potential on the horizon for additional EC funding instruments, whereby the EC proposes that GÉANT would be an agent to carry out further connectivity investments. Whilst not specific in where/when, the funds have been scoped and the mechanisms to enable entities such as GÉANT to engage are being defined. From the insights gathered to date, the GÉANT Association will need to consider resource issues to handle the work, possible new governance models (e.g., the contribution agreement) before we can receive such funds, and where and how GÉANT will be prepared to act in terms of procuring and/or operating intercontinental/international connectivity, that will organically strengthen open digital autonomy for R&E and the wider global R&E network infrastructure. As discussions with the EC progress, more questions are likely to arise.
In this topic spotlight we will explore the proposed IC funding opportunities and their implications for GÉANT, and describe how GÉANT is preparing to harness them through requirement gathering, proven practices in procurement and contract models, oversight, etc. The event will also commence discussions on what as an Association GÉANT must consider and how Members may need to co-ordinate with their respective governments to ensure that the needs presented by the EC on the Member States’ behalf correlate to the interest of R&E.
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Meeting ID: 665 4228 8484