BCNet 2010 Conference – New Initiatives in Shared Network Applications

by | May 3, 2010

New Initiatives in Shared Network Applications – Identity Management Working Group Report 2010

To watch our panel presentation, click here for the video

IDM Working Group Purpose

As a working group under the direction of the Applications Advisory Committee (APAC), the group will seek to create a forum for inter-institutional discussion of identity management issues while encouraging the collaboration and exchange of ideas and information between BCNET member institutions, other provincial post-secondary educational institutions and provincial and federal public sectors, including government and health care authorities.


Membership consists of IDM specialists from each BCNet member institution as well as BC Campus.


Eduroam – led the Canadian introduction of Eduroam with BCNet members.  Developed policies, procedures and support for Eduroam in BC.  Led the creation of the Canadian Access Federation, who now is responsible for Eduroam as well as Shibboleth. Canada joined the Eduroam federation in April 2008.

What is eduroam?

Do you need wireless access from your laptop around the world?

eduroam (education roaming) lets you do this.

Let’s say you are planning to attend an upcoming conference at the University of Calgary, or perhaps you are visiting the University of Western Ontario from the University of Amsterdam.

If you need wireless access, you will no longer need a guest account from the campus you are visiting — you simply use eduroam. Set it up once at your home institution, and it will work at any other eduroam member institution in the world!

Canadian Eduroam Membership – 23 members and counting …

  • BC – 7 members
  • Alberta – 3
  • Saskatchewan – 1
  • Ontario – 8
  • Quebec – 2
  • New Brunswick – 1
  • Newfoundland – 1

BCNet IDM Working Group continues to advocate to other higher education institutions around the province to join Eduroam.

BCNet IDM Workshop – May 2010

On Monday, May 3rd the BCNet IDM Working Group hosted a full day workshop for BCNet members, BC Campus and guests from the BC Government Office of the CIO, Health Authorities and Oracle. Four years ago, the IDM WG hosted a full day at SFU Burnaby.  For those of us who were there, today would prove to be interesting to see how far IDM initiatives had come.

The day started with Peter Watkins from the BC Government Office of the Chief Information Officer talking about the Provincial work on Claims Based IDM Architecture and the future possibilities and challenges.

Randy Bruce from BC Campus was up next talking about their IDM initiatives especially the links with PASBC.  SFU led the membership presentations talking about LDAP, CAS, Shibboleth and Open Registry.

Oracle sponsored lunch and brought in a speaker to talk about the technology strategy for IDM and in particular the impact on Sun and Oracle IDM product streams.

UBC took over after lunch to present their 2 year IDM strategy project and Grouper (open source group management).  Thompson Rivers University spoke about their Novell IDM approach with SunGard HE Banner and Active Directory.  BCIT spoke next covering the past, present and future of IDM inititatives.  University of Victoria completed the day talking about their IDM initiatives and particularly the role of Sun Identity Manager.

Some common themes from the day:

  • every institution has challenges with System of Record data and how to provision and even harder de-provision with it
  • each of us encounters politics and cultural issues that must be addressed in our IDM initiatives
  • most institutions are implementing Microsoft Active Directory with some institutions making AD their “enterprise directory”
  • all the attendees expressed a desire to work closer together and will leverage the IDM Working Group to do this
  • we also want to broaden the IDM dialogue with the Health Authorities and the Provincial Government

The workshop was a highly valuable day and we will do our best not to wait another 4 years to hold the next one!

Update: The Collaboration Working Group laid down a new challenge for the IDM Working Group – Thank you Frances!

How do we make using IDM technologies easier for our community?

How can we do a better job of marketing IDM use to our community?

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