Advance enterprise IT at NCAR and UCAR

Supporting all of NCAR’s computational and data services is an Information Technology (IT) infrastructure with many cross-cutting issues that must be managed across organizational boundaries. These include processes for adopting technology to maintain interoperability, responsibility for the collective cybersecurity posture of NCAR/UCAR, and coordinating network infrastructure.

Developing an enterprise architecture (EA) has been foundational to our approach to enterprise IT. EA is the discipline of translating an organization’s vision and strategy into effective business practices combined with IT infrastructure to support those practices. The EA is a joint effort between CISL/OSD and UCAR Finance and Administration, and it supports the strategic plans of both UCAR and NCAR. Because IT is rapidly evolving, there is a standalone UCAR IT Strategic Plan. This effort has adopted a lightweight approach and is similar to CISL’s new strategic planning effort adopting a more frequent, continuous, and intentional update model.

There were many advances in enterprise IT during FY2017. Networking enhancements in FY2017 could be summarized as the year of 100-Gbps links as three major networks were upgraded providing support for the NCAR/UCAR/FRGP/BiSON community. Cybersecurity efforts made progress on FISMA “Low” certification for the general organization, rolled out formalized awareness and training for all UCAR staff, and hosted a workshop focused on fostering collaboration among NCAR and UCAR member institutions. The enterprise services team successfully rolled out a comprehensive Identity and Access Management solution supporting Concur, Uprocure, and a host of other applications moving them to a common authentication infrastructure. And in addition, CISL has invested significant time and effort into preparing the MLDC for the renovation construction project while maintaining operations.

These efforts are supported primarily by UCAR indirect funds. FISMA efforts also receive project funding to cover the costs for FISMA certification above the “Low” level. The MLCF renovation was funded by NSF Special funds and UCAR overhead funding from the UCAR Communications pool.