Process & Progress

Next Gen² Network is a focused discovery exercise designed to create a modern business-relevant network strategy. Key components include high-capacity, future-ready network connectivity configured on-the-fly with support for cloud services, mobile applications, and IOT with enhanced security and analytics-driven service management.

The first phase of the initiative includes data gathering from UW–Madison campus and our peer institutions, to uncover unmet needs and develop business cases which will be analyzed and be presented later this year to IT leadership for consideration.

Discovery process

Nine in-person discovery sessions were held in various campus locations during Jan 2020 and a virtual session was held in early March. Over 100 technical and non-technical staff members attended and provided input on 18 pre-established questions. The results were compiled and ranked based on the number of times the input was given.

Ranked input received on the ten technical questions (PDF)

Ranked input received on the eight non-technical questions (PDF)

A technical deep-dive session held on Feb 12, 2020, was attended by 45 people representing 23 campus units. Presentations were given on the current state of the network, the Cybersecurity ideal future state (Zero Trust Network), and Interoperability. Following the presentations, five facilitators hosted discussions on what it would take in terms of people, process, policy, and technology to move in the direction of a Zero Trust framework and identity-based access.

Output from the facilitated discussions (PDF)

The core project team conducted virtual or onsite interviews with the following peer institutions using a set of questions covering network topology, management and operations, and engineering, design and deployment:

  • Oregon State University –Jan 15, 2020 (virtual)
  • University of Michigan –Jan 30. 2020 (onsite)
  • University of Minnesota –Jan 31, 2020 (virtual)
  • University of Indiana/GlobalNOC –Feb 6, 2020 (onsite)
  • Rutgers University –Feb 20, 2020 (onsite)

Reflections following peer institution visits (PDF)

Project timeline

High-Level Milestones

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