SWITCH brings clarity to the cloud

Around 90 participants at the second Higher Education Cloud Day recently gained insights into new developments in the cloud industry. Cloud applications are only being introduced slowly into higher education in comparison to the private sector. SWITCH fills the gap with a range of offers tailored to the needs of universities.

Text: Immo Noack, published on 13.09.2017

Cloud-based services are becoming ever more important for Swiss universities. While these services are being actively promoted by universities, an increasing number of providers are now also only offering cloud-based solutions. In addition to the current internal applications used by universities, SWITCH's range of services, which features both proprietary and commercial solutions, plays an important role here.

The second Higher Education Cloud Day offered a comprehensive overview with product presentations and reports on SWITCHengines, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform, Google G-Suite and Office 365. These were complemented by explanations of Microsoft’s data protection policy and aspects of the new General Data Protection Regulation relating to Swiss universities. In addition, the providers serving the Swiss market under the terms of the GÉANT IaaS tender introduced themselves.

SWITCH therefore doesn't just provide its own solutions; it also offers universities a comprehensive range of cloud services together with commercial providers.

A variety of requirements for the cloud

Legal questions regarding data protection, classification and storage, as well as place of jurisdiction and applicable law, are key issues that every university needs to manage. Moreover, business development, supplier management and procurement all come with their own sets of requirements. SWITCH offers comprehensive clarification of and assistance with these issues.

Budgeting also plays an important role in cloud applications. While researchers can spontaneously access research funding and use particular cloud applications at short notice, IT services are committed to their budgets and have to plan and implement larger-scale uses of cloud services in the longer term.

Further informations:
Welcome to the digital single market for cloud services (Movie)
About the author
Immo   Noack

Immo Noack

Immo Noack has been working in the SWITCH Procurement Team since November 2012. Prior to that, he held posts at the Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich and on the Neptun project, among others. He originally graduated in Electrical Engineering.

Higher Education Cloud Days

The regular meetings aim to present solutions, introduce new providers and offer a platform for exchanging experiences. The meetings happen at the University of Bern. The first took place in the middle of April, the second at the end of August 2017. The next meeting is scheduled for 10 April 2018 at the University of Bern.

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