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Service Provider Study Results

At the May 2011 meeting of REFEDS in Prague, Nicole carried out a survey based on the recommendations of the 'Barriers to Service Providers' report. The results are shown below with recommendations for how the work will now be carried forward.

As a level of assessment, activities with 70% support or more will be taken forward.

Cross-federation supporting documentation for eduGain

Participants were asked if REFEDS should produce supporting documentation for eduGAIN aimed at entities, explaining how eduGAIN works, how to go about opting-in to eduGAIN and how to manage and understand who is consuming your metadata.

74% of participants agreed that this work should be taken forward.

Action: Nicole to work with Mikael and Valter to create appropriate documentation, TERENA to produce with REFEDS branding.

Clearer interpretation of federation policies

There was unanimous support for defining core functions of federation policies and mapping these to different federations using creative commons style symbols to indicate meaning.

Action: Nicole to analyse and define key policy areas and to identify an organisation to help create the symbols.

One-off clauses within federation agreements and sponsorship letters

89% of participants were supportive of REFEDS writing to federations that currently have unusual clauses within their federation agreements explaining the barriers to SPs work and asking for further information as to why they chose to use such a clause.

80% were supportive of a push by REFEDS to remove upfront requirement of sponsorship letters from federation practises.

Action: Nicole and Licia to draft letters after the work analysing federation policies is complete.

Funding models

83% of participants were supportive of establishing a list of 'friends of REFEDS' and asking federations to wave fees in the case of such providers.

Action: Nicole and Licia to work on criteria for establishing such a list and work on communicating with fee-charging federations to accept such 'friends' on this basis.

Only 25% of participants thought that moving to an IdP charging model only would help mitigate a loss of revenue if eduGAIN were to become a success. As such, the second question around REFEDS acting as a fee broker for SPs is moot, but 40% of participants thought it had some merit.

Action: REFEDS to monitor the impact on federation revenue models as eduGAIN becomes embedded.

Technical areas

86% of participants agreed that REFEDS should collate central information about the software supported by federations. 100% supported a lightweight survey to provide recommendations on certificate usage within federations.

Action: Nicole to collate information and present back to the group.

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