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366 Days, 8,784 Hours and 300 Tweets So Far: My Adventures and Work at Internet2

Apr 20, 2016, by Florence Hudson
Tags: CINO, Community-Driven Innovation, End-to-End Trust and Security, Executive Insights, Frontpage News, Gender Diversity Award, Gender Diversity Initiative

My incredible journey as Chief Innovation Officer at Internet2 began a year ago in March, 2015, and what a wonderful whirlwind it has been. I have met incredible community members, visited amazing places, and kicked off many exciting initiatives since last year. Reflecting back on my work and proudest accomplishments this year, I am extremely grateful for our partnerships and the incredible work our community members do day-in and day-out in support of their institutions of higher education and research. I'm especially pleased to have the opportunity to celebrate the achievements and milestones of our community at the upcoming Internet2 Global Summit next month in Chicago.

The theme for the 2016 Global Summit in Chicago – site of the first official meeting that eventually led to the formation of Internet2 - will focus on honoring the members who have shaped and developed Internet2 over the past 20 years, and showcasing visionaries whose work and strategies will shape the next 20 years for Internet2 and the entire Research and Education community.

In the spirit of celebrating our community, I have taken a moment to reflect on some of the partnerships we've forged, adventures we've embarked on, and work we have completed through the Chief Innovation Office and our Collaborative Innovation Community at Internet2 over the past year.

Gender Diversity Initiative

The Gender Diversity Initiative kicked off in 2013 to shine a light on the opportunity to increase diversity in our community, with a specific focus on gender diversity. I’m delighted that we have funded Gender Diversity Initiative Scholarships for women to join us at each Internet2 signature events of Global Summit and our Technology Exchange since them, giving them the opportunity to develop their network and networking skills. In 2015, we juiced up our GDI with the creation of the SWE@Internet2 Community, expanding our partnership from NCWIT to SWE to provide professional development and support for women in technology. We announced this special partnership with SWE at the University of Wisconsin at Madison in May, 2015. I’m also thrilled that so many CIOs have asked us to present on campus about diversity, inclusion and unconscious bias to enable an open discussion to improve the diversity of all environments and communities we serve.

In the next year, we look forward to enabling internships for women in technology, furthering the SWE@Internet2 community, and bringing the diversity and inclusion message to everyone who is interested.

IoT working group

The Internet of Things working group started with three co-chairs, a few universities, and a few international NRENs. Now we have more than 100 members, have hosted an end to end trust and security for IOT workshop with NSF and IEEE's Internet Initiative, rolled out a virtual IOT Sandbox with our industry member IBM for IOT application development, and created a Smart Campus initiative with an IOT System Risk Management task force. We’ve come so far and are delighted with the engagement level of our university, industry, lab, network (regional and international partners) and agency members. I was excited to host a panel on IOT innovation at the Cisco IOT World Forum in Dubai, joined by one of our IOT innovation working group co-chairs, Raj Veeramani from UW-Madison, IBM IoT leader Gaya Srinivasan Magie, IEEE Internet Initiative leader Oleg Logvinov, and our HEAnet teammate from Ireland Victor Reijs.

Next year, we look forward to the smart campus initiative enabling valuable sharing of real life learnings from IOT deployments on campus from smart stadiums to IOT systems risk management. It is wonderful that the Internet2 network is already serving as a test bed for smart grid research for some of the North Carolina researchers, and look forward to enabling that for other researchers. We also look forward to furthering the partnerships and value to our members from the IOT sandbox.

End-to-end trust and security working group

The end to end trust and security working group teamed with the IOT working group to lead us to a new model in end to end trust and security for IOT. Co-sponsoring a workshop in this area with the IEEE Internet Initiative and the NSF Cybersecurity Program, we developed a point of view regarding what is important in this area – we call it TIPPSS. Trust, Identity, Privacy, Protection, Safety and Security for IOT. We have also identified new parts of the future roadmap for end to end trust and security such as network segmentation and software defined perimeters, and have engaged the community in those ideas. In the next year we are delving into the topic of end to end trust and security in the Internet of Medical things, including a panel at the IEEE CHASE event for Connected Healthcare: Applications, Systems and Engineering Technologies June 28 in Washington, DC, and furthering the overall TIPPSS  concepts including how IOT ethics regarding TIPPSS can be taught in university and beyond.

Smart campus initiative

We are thrilled that the IoT innovation working group spawned the smart campus initiative, as that is the instantiation of IoT for our university members. We really appreciate the guidance of the Smart Campus CIO advisory council that will help us focus on the areas that bring most value to our members. The CIO’s are providing leadership and bringing in their colleagues such as facilities leaders on campus to engage the community in a discussion focused on operational value from IoT on a smart campus. Over the next year we look forward to shared best practices and learnings of real smart campus efforts, as well as recommendations and deliverables from the IOT System risk management and other task forces commissioned for the Smart Campus initiative.

Key ICT Trends for R&E

The Chief Innovation Office did an environmental market scan of 100 source documents in 2015 resulting in a view of the top 10 trends in information and communications technology (ICT) for the research and education community. At the top of the list are IoT, Healthcare and Life Sciences, and Smart cities/grid. This presentation has sparked interesting collaborative innovation discussions across the community and on campus. The broadband community, the regional networks, and the campus collaborative innovation discussions find it intriguing and visionary. You can use it too.


We want to thank the nine chairs from across our first three innovation working groups for being inaugural members of the new CINO PAG. Formed in March, 2016, this PAG is the strategic advisory council to the CINO efforts, including strategic planning and identification of the next innovation areas for our Collaborative Innovation Community.

Join us in innovation!

Any Internet2 member can join the Collaborative Innovation Community and innovation working groups, just send a note to You can see all the CINO and innovation working group happenings, recorded webinars, and collateral on the CINO wiki. We have CIOs, researchers, professors, students, facilities leaders, network engineers, scientists, labs, agencies, network partners, industry members in our working groups. You can join us too!


I look forward to meeting with our community members in Chicago next month, to celebrate the exciting advancements and achievements of the R&E community and toast to the next 20 years of adventure -- and scientific and technical discovery – together!