The Advanced Science and Technology Institute (ASTI), an attached agency of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), participated in the 29th Nordic Gateway for Research and Education (NORDUnet) Conference 2016 from 20 to 22 September, 2016 in Marina Congress Center, Helsinki, Finland.
Hosted by the Finnish National Research Education Network (NREN) Funet/CSC, the three-day conference covered topics such as innovative infrastructure and service development, advanced applications of research and education networks (REN), e-Science and e-learning, and security and risk mitigation.
With Supervising Science Research Specialist Bayani Benjamin Lara as representative, the Agency took part in a series of keynote and lightning talks or five-minute presentations that focus on one key concept, idea, or best practice. The conference also featured a series of parallel hands-on workshops and side meetings on pertinent REN issues.
“It’s good that the Philippines gets some exposure about how European countries run their own NRENs. We are able to compare our own network, and adjust accordingly, based on the best practices that we get from our peers,” said Lara.
He added that such event creates opportunities for the DOST-ASTI to work in partnership with participating institutions.
“There is a lot of potential in terms of project collaboration and knowledge exchange in key research areas in network operations such as identity federation, network abstraction (software defined networks) and network security, among other things,” he added.
NORDUnet 2016 is the Nordic region platform for national networking, gathering universities, NRENs and their respective European and global colleagues in one collaborative space. The aim of the conference is to feature Nordic, European, and international innovation in the fields of REN, together with the present challenges and future innovations within the scope of the topics covered by the conference.
Through consistent efforts of spreading the need for concerted REN initiative, NORDUnet has grown into a large network composed of various research and development faculties from all over the world. Specifically, through the NORDUnet’s NREN Fellowship Programme, the body was able to tap delegates from 10 emerging NREN namely Malaysian Research & Education Network, Central Asian Research and Education Network, Philippine Research Education and Government Information Network (PREGINET), Bangladesh Research and Education Network, The American University of Beirut, Lebanon, West and Central African Research and Education Network, Zambia Research and Education Network, Bhutan research and education network, and Nepal Research and Education Network.
Also, the Agency participated in a series of sessions on Cryptech, developments in global R7E networking initiatives, practical information security management, media, networks for Big Science projects, Nordic clouds, trends in networks, web security and secure research, among others.
As the DOST-ASTI’s mandate is to consistently improve its research and development agenda, participation in NORDUnet is crucial in forging stronger ties with foreign REN institutions, paving the way for the transfer of best practices and diverse benchmarking of networking solutions within participating institutions.
PREGINET is the only REN in the Philippines that serves as an interlinking platform among academic, government, and research institutions. It has links to several international RENs namely Asia-Pacific Advanced Network, Asian Internet Interconnection Initiatives, and Trans-Eurasia Information Network 3.
It was not until the establishment of PREGINET that an integrated and merged REN in the country existed. Before, academic, government, and research institutions are linked through commercial Internet Service Providers. PREGINET serves as an aggregator of these different networks into a single REN, while also allowing access to online information and reference for research and educational purposes among subscribing partners.