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8 April 2014
AAI workshop strengthens ties between users and e-infrastructures

At an AAI (Authentication and Authorisation Infrastructures) workshop last week it was agreed that work in this area will be planned as part of the Horizon 2020 calls and GN4 project. The workshop was organised by TERENA and G√ČANT in follow up to its participation in the 'AAA' scientific data infrastructure preparatory study and publication of the final report in 2012. The workshop offered an opportunity to review what has been done since that study, to review the latest AAI developments, to define next steps and to consult stakeholders about the next two years of work. The workshop was hosted by the European Commission (EC) in Brussels on 2 April 2014.

Beside the interesting discussion and feedback on future work to be undertaken in the next EC calls, the workshop was an occasion to strengthen collaboration between federations operators, other e-infrastructure providers and user communities. Participants jointly identified the solidity and potential of the federation approach, and which challenges are still ahead.

The workshop proved a fruitful opportunity to meet and share ideas between representatives from AAI e-infrastructures and many user groups, incuding ELIXIR, ESA, FIM4R, DARIAH and CLARIN. Presentations about EGI.eu, STORK, eduGAIN and EUDAT highlighted an increased interest from e-infrastructures in using federated access to support cross-sector collaboration. OpenConext, the collaborative platform developed by SURFnet was also presented.

From the user groups there was a clear indication about which of their requirements are / are not currently supported by the AAI e-infrastructures. The group identified unsupported requirements in non-web support, coverage of federated access (as not all identity providers are part of federations), attributes release for international collaboration, and Levels of Assurance. These topics were discussed in further detail in break-out sessions.

A detailed report on the breakout sessions and future steps agreed in this workshop will be made available on the workshop webpage shortly.

The AAA Study could pave the way to distributed and collaborative authentication, authorisation and accounting (AAA) for scientific data. It was carried out by a consortium composed of LIBER (The Association of European Research Libraries), University of Amsterdam (NL), University Debrecen (HU) and TERENA, which was the lead partner. A news article about the collaboration was published on 18 December 2012. The final report on 'Advancing Technologies and Federating Communities' is available online.

Find more online about EGI.eu, STORK, eduGAIN and EUDAT.