EaPConnect at TNC22

Attending TNC22, GÉANT flagship conference, in Trieste, Italy on 13-17 June was a long awaited opportunity for the EaP NRENs to come together in person after almost a 3-year gap and meet the project management team. Some of the team members had joined the team during the lockdown and meeting in real life was a welcome chance to  build human networks beyond the online environment.  In short, it truly was the time to re-connect, to build new connections and as the conference theme suggested “to navigate the unexplored “ by attending conference sessions covering a wide range of subjects.  It was also an opportunity to reflect on the war against Ukraine and its impact on  people, activities and every aspect of the EaPConnect project.

The conference welcome address by Erik Huizer, GÉANT CEO, included references to EaPConnect’s overall progress and to the project’s considerable network and connectivity developments since its launch in 2015.  The opening plenary also featured a short video with the title ‘Operations under critical conditions’ produced in collaboration with GÉANT, where our colleagues and friends from the Ukrainian NREN, URAN, Yevhenii Preobrazhensky and Iryna Rykhalska,  tell us how the February 2022 events changed their lives forever.

Introducing the video to TNC22’s international audience Erik Huizer said: “GÉANT is a membership organisation, one of our members is URAN. Despite being a country at war, colleagues from URAN continue to work as best they can, in adverse and hostile circumstances. The GÉANT community stands by the Ukrainian NREN with complete solidarity.”

Erik Huizer, CEO, GÉANT

Irina Matthews, GÉANT and Rasim Alguliev, IIT of ANAS.TNC22 was also the stage for the official signature of the agreement between EaPConnect and the Institute of Information Technology of the Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences (IIT of ANAS) – which operates AzScienceNet, the national Azerbaijan research and education network, one of the beneficiaries of the EaPConnect project – to host the forthcoming EaPEC 2022,  the Eastern Partnership E-infrastructures Conference in Baku on 28-29 September 2022. The memorandum of understanding was signed by Irina Matthews, EaPConnect Project Manager, GÉANT and Rasim Alguliev, Vice President, IIT of ANAS. Registration for EaPEC 2022 is open.

EaPConnect2 Project meeting

The project management team is currently busy working on the programme for the first face to face EaPConnect2 project meeting that will take place in Tbilisi, Georgia on 11-12 October 2022, hosted by GRENA, the Georgian NREN.  The meeting will be held jointly with the GÉANT community’s Special Interest Group on Management of Service Portfolios (SIG-MSP) and will focus on sustainability and services – existing and new – on their deployment, promotion, on how to build relationships with existing users and how to attract new ones.

Irina Matthews, EaPConnect Project Manager comments: “Our objective is to use this event as road map planning for the immediate to mid-term future, within the life span of the project and also beyond.”

Irina Matthews, EaPConnect2 Project Manager, GÉANT