Towards a professionally managed service portfolio

A recurring theme in the NREN community is the need for justifying the “special position” that NRENs occupy. The justification can be found in the fact that NRENs provide innovative services that are not generally available in the commercial market. Furthermore, NRENs bring synergy in the global collaboration between higher education and research institutes. So, regarding the sustainability and continuity of the current NREN organizations, various stakeholders have to be served. For justifying the funding, the innovativeness of an NREN is key. Without actual users however, innovation does not have added value. So, the key to the existence of an NREN depends on whether or not the right balance is found between innovativeness and demand-drivenness. That balance can be found in making the right choices in the product development process. In order to align better with our stakeholders and make more deliberate choices in our product development process, SURFnet recently improved the Life Cycle Portfolio Management (LCPM) process and expanded it with a more business related point of view. In 2014 SURFnet experimented with the improved LCPM process and that learned us that it is not only about product development (lifecycle management), but makes clear that a vision on the entire product portfolio (portfolio management) is as important as well. The question arises, “What are the right criteria for decisions regarding our product portfolio in order to retain the right balance between innovation and demand drivenness?” In the first half of 2015, this question will be topic of further exploration. During our presentation, we would like to discuss the findings regarding those criteria and share experiences with our colleague NRENs.



  • Lonneke Walk, SURFnet
  • Walter van Dijk, SURFnet

Part of session

Listening to the community

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