The relatively high cost of the Internet and lack of infrastructure to establish connectivity to the Points of Presence located in datacentres in Nigeria has presented challenges for higher education institutions to interconnect with each other and other NRENs to obtain REN services available beyond national borders. The Chief Executive Officers (or their representatives) from University of Lagos, Covenant University and Lagos State University met with national and regional REN providers plus private sector stakeholders to discuss possible community-driven initiatives that can help to surmount the challenges. The meeting took place at the Wheatbaker Hotel, Ikoyi, Lagos on the 12 February 2019.
KEY POINTS FROM THE MEETING:
- Connect universities in domains of trust by joining a federated education identity provider platform operated to establish a Nigerian research and education (REN) Federation. A workshop will take place in Covenant University from 26-28 February 2019 that will be used to establish the Nigerian eduID federation. As a result of the federation, REN services from WACREN will be piloted at these 3 leading universities in the Lagos area and eduroam, the global wifi roaming service deployed to enhance collaboration and research among these universities and the global REN community.
- Form a consortium to make representation to relevant government agencies and infracos to discuss ways providing infrastructure and/or financial aid to help establish the required links required to interconnect institutions and connect to WACREN. All present will collaborate on research projects to help make the case to government and infracos/telcos.
- Work with all present to devise research projects with key aspects of the research to include innovation, data collection and distribution using the infrastructure and technology from the private stakeholders and REN providers. Engaging students in these research projects through campus internships and will be part of the process. Joint capacity building programmes for staff and students will also be designed working with this consortium.
- Increase collaboration with other Nigerian regional clusters to expand the REN federation and reduce the cost of content through the economies of scale that belonging to the federation can bring.
The meeting concluded with a consensus that documentation and MOU outlining the agreements to join the education identity federation would be sent to the VCs via their ICT Directors. Campus internships for students will be established to promote further collaboration and research among the 3 universities and organisations present at the meeting.