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From our President and CEO Dave Lambert: Reflections on 2013 and a Look Ahead

Dec 19, 2013, by H. David Lambert
Tags: Executive Insights, Member Update

As 2013 draws to a close, it is the perfect time to reflect on the highlights of what we, as a community, have achieved this year. Perhaps most important among these accomplishments is that community participation continues to grow. To date, we have welcomed 53 new members since January.

Community participation and engagement have also deepened; we have very engaged board and advisory group members; had record attendance at the Annual Meeting; and see very positive growth in funding for, and use of, advanced new network and application capabilities for large-scale team-science collaborations that have the power to make impacts far beyond academia. 

In the coming decade, we anticipate a greater acceleration in scientific and educational leadership and innovation than has been experienced during the previous 350 years. Why? Think of it as a confluence of opportunity—a moment in time when, finally, the brightest human beings on the planet can gain instant access to far-flung colleagues, massive amounts of shared data, immense computational power, and specialized application-driven research environments, anytime and anywhere they want at bandwidth capacities unheard of just a decade ago. And it all couldn’t have come at a more opportune moment. 

Facing shrinking budgets and increasing campus IT demands, institutional CIOs must continually seek out new directions that allow them to extract the most value from increasingly limited resources. At the same time, in order to assume and maintain a competitive position in attracting and supporting groundbreaking research, institutions must be able to provide the kind of abundant, unconstrained bandwidth and leading edge networking services that allow research and learning the freedom to take place anywhere it’s needed. Science and research are truly global now with a new emphasis on shared data, bandwidth, resources, and specialized computing environments—while controlling infrastructure costs. In short, the budget busting imperative to “go it alone” when it comes to networking and services has been rendered obsolete.

That’s why our community of more than 450 member institutions, corporations, government agencies, and research facilities has been building the world’s fastest network including a comprehensive portfolio of end-to-end network, cloud, and trust capabilities to spur our community to work in new ways. Together, we’re creating an advanced Innovation Platform to inspire a new generation of community-developed applications and empower members to deliver the next wave of tailored, services for scientific researchers and educators across the U.S. and around the world.

Pioneering disruptive technologies in pursuit of scientific discovery and next-generation learning have been hallmarks of the U.S. R&E community since its inception. Transformational technologies have been spawned from this work and have helped shape new global paradigms; the future promises much more of the same. Internet2 and the U.S. R&E community have never been more committed to helping drive the development of revolutionary innovations in network technologies while sharing the benefits these innovations deliver. Internet2 is the community that shapes the future—and the 100G Internet2 Network is the next great leap that will take us all there.

As we look ahead, we commit to our members and global partners that Internet2 will continue striving to deliver the advanced network, cloud, trust and more services needed today, with an eye ever on the future. We look forward to your renewed energy in 2014, as together we have an even more productive and prosperous New Year.