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Final Report of the Interfederation Working Group

This iteration of the Interfederation Working Group spanned approximately six months time, from the end of October 2013 through the end of March 2014.

Executive Summary

The Interfederation Working Group makes the following specific recommendations to TAC:

  1. InCommon should sign the eduGAIN Declaration as soon as possible
  2. TAC should work with Ops to operationalize eduGAIN over the next six months
  3. TAC should instantiate a new working group with a charter based on the Future Work items listed below

Work Summary

We began our work with the following set of deliverables, derived from the recommendations of the first iteration of this working group:

  1. Review international interfederation agreements with eduGAIN and UK federation.
  2. Document trust practices and policies for entity registration and publishing.
  3. Review and adopt the US-EU Code of Conduct to address privacy and attribute release.
  4. Review and assist in the implementation of improvements and new capabilities for metadata management/publication/aggregation/tagging.
  5. Establish practices and policies for domestic interfederation.

We made the following progress toward these deliverables:

  1. Review international interfederation agreements with eduGAIN and UK federation.
    • Reviewed eduGAIN Policy Framework to better understand the implications of InCommon joining eduGAIN.
    • The outcomes of that review are documented at eduGAIN Policy Framework notes.
    • Provided specific recommendation to the TAC regarding the signing of eduGAIN Declaration.
  2. Document trust practices and policies for entity registration and publishing.
    • Some general discussion of trust practices and policies for entity registration and publishing are found in our notes on eduGAIN Policy Framework notes. However, there is still considerable work to be done here. Foremost is the creation of a Metadata Registration Practice Statement, which is required for active participation in eduGAIN.
  3. Review and adopt the US-EU Code of Conduct to address privacy and attribute release.
    • We note that the international version of the EU Code of Conduct is not finalized at this time, so progress was limited.
    • However, we did discuss some technical aspects of the proposed EU Code of Conduct, as indicated in the document CoC FedOp Perspective.
    • Further review and discussion will be needed when the Code of Conduct is finalized.
  4. Review and assist in the implementation of improvements and new capabilities for metadata management/publication/aggregation/tagging.
    • In the context of interfederation, this is essentially the operationalization of the trust practices and policies outlined in item b. This is an area for follow-on work.
  5. Establish practices and policies for domestic interfederation.
    • Pilot projects for domestic interfederation are still in the works, so limited progress was made.
    • While it falls short of establishing practices and policies, the committee did provide a forum to inform regional providers looking to interfederate with InCommon (IdP and Metadata Best Practices) through a series of two telecons devoted to that subject.

Future Work

The Interfederation Working Group hereby recommends to the TAC that there be another iteration of the working group with the following charter:

  1. Aid in the production of an InCommon Metadata Registration Practice Statement that will suitably satisfy the requirements of eduGAIN.
  2. Provide options and recommendations for aligning current practices with eduGAIN requirements.
  3. Assist in operationalizing eduGAIN requirements in metadata registration/aggregation/tagging practices.
  4. Monitor progress of regional federation and The Quilt/InCommon pilot programs in preparation to assist in regional interfederation.
  5. Monitor progress of International EU Code of Conduct in order to provide feedback to InCommon on its policy and operational ramifications.

We recommend the charter again span a six-month time period.

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