Frequently Asked Questions
What is EaPConnect?
EaPConnect is an EC co-funded connectivity project which aims to provide the Eastern Partnership (EaP) countries with a high-capacity regional internet network to connect researchers, academics and students across Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine to their counterparts in Europe and further afield. Thanks to direct links to the pan-European GÉANT network, EaPConnect will provide a regional gateway for global collaborative research and education.
How is EaPConnect funded?
The European Commission’s Directorate-General for Neighbourhood and Enlargements Negotiations (DG NEAR) contributes 95% (€13M) towards the cost of the EaPConnect project, with the remainder coming from the six beneficiary countries. EaPConnect and its services will be free at point of use.
How many users will be connected to the EaPConnect network?
Two million researchers, academics and students at 700 institutions across the EaP countries are expected to benefit from the improved intra-regional connectivity that the EaPConnect projects sets out to establish. Direct links from EaPConnect to Europe’s GÉANT network create a potential user base in excess of 50 million.
What are the origins of EaPConnect?
EaPConnect is a cornerstone of the Eastern Partnership’s digital agenda to bridge the digital divide, reduce brain drain, foster social cohesion and ultimately to bring the EaP countries closer to the European Union.
Why do we need EaPConnect?
EaPConnect promotes digital inclusion, providing wider access to cutting-edge network resources and reducing the digital disparity between the EaP countries and the European Union. It also furthers integration by linking research and academic communities throughout the region.
Many of today’s global challenges, such as climate change or environmental disasters, require global collaboration to tackle their specific local impacts. EaPConnect fully integrates EaP researchers into the global information society to help identify and deliver local solutions.
How is EaPConnect organised?
EaPConnect aims to create a network of networks. It provides international connectivity between national networks in the region. Each national research and education network (NREN) provides connectivity to universities and research centres in their country. EaPConnect connects partner NRENs across the region to create an integrated research and education community.
Will EaPConnect interconnect with other world regions?
Yes it will. Thanks to its interconnection with the pan-European GÉANT network, which in turn has connections to other world regions including North America, Latin America and Asia-Pacific, EaPConnect will be part of a global network for research and education collaborations.
Who are the project partners?
The project partners of EaPConnect are the networking organisation GÉANT, the European Commission and the national research and education networks (NRENs) from the six Eastern Partnership countries:
- Armenia: the Institute for Informatics and Automation Problems of the National Academy of Sciences of the Republic of Armenia (IIAP NAS RA)
- Azerbaijan: Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences and Institute of Information Technology (AzScienceNet)
- Belarus: The United Institute of Informatics Problems and The National Academy of Sciences of Belarus (UIIP NASB)
- Georgia: The Georgian Research and Educational Networking Association (GRENA)
- Moldova: The Research and Educational Networking Association of Moldova (RENAM)
- Ukraine: The Association of Users of Ukrainian Research and Academic Network (URAN Association)
How long will EaPConnect run?
EaPConnect is expected to have a duration of five years from the signature of its contract which took place on 11 June 2015 at the 1st Eastern Partnership Ministerial Meeting on The Digital Economy in Luxembourg.
What applications will use the network?
Any type of not-for-profit research and education activity can use the network. It is especially suited to data-intensive, bandwidth-hungry projects requiring reliable high-speed connectivity, but can equally be used to provide fast access to conventional web-based resources from all over the Eastern Partnership countries and other parts of the world. With more than two million potential users in the region, the applications of the network are almost limitless.
How successful do you think EaPConnect will be?
EaPConnect will benefit from GÉANT’s expertise in providing cost-effective high-bandwidth connectivity to other regions around the world. Following the success of regional networks such as RedCLARA in Latin America, EUMEDCONNECT in the Mediterranean and TEIN in Asia-Pacific, EaPConnect will create a research and education gateway in the eastern neighbourhood of the European Union, where scientists are eager to take part in the digital convergence and to contribute to world-class collaborative research.
Why should research and education communities use EaPConnect?
EaPConnect is dedicated solely to the purpose of supporting research and education. It delivers high-bandwidth connections that are free from the congestion and expense of commercial internet traffic. Once their host institution is connected, researchers, academics and students can benefit from advanced connectivity at no extra cost.
How do I connect to EaPConnect?
To benefit from the EaPConnect infrastructure, prospective users should contact their local NREN to establish whether their host institution is already connected to the respective NREN. If it is, they are ready to participate in the project and will be granted access as the network is being built. If it isn’t, the national network will advise them of the application procedure. Click here for contact details of each NREN.