Ted Dodds CIO and Vice President
Information Technologies

Message from the CIO

Welcome to the IT@Cornell Annual Showcase, 2015 edition. On this site we have compiled some of the highlights, accomplishments, and progress made by the IT@Cornell community in relation to the IT@Cornell Strategic Plan. IT@Cornell comprises eighteen IT Service Groups (ITSGs) operating in colleges, schools and units, as well as Central Information Technologies (CIT).

Among the notable trends in 2014-15 was Cornell’s continued national leadership in cloud technologies, which are among the most important drivers of the IT efficiency gains in recent years. By the end of 2015 we expect all of the major administrative systems to be running in the cloud or in an externally managed and hosted environment. This change offers big benefits in business continuity, security, and overall flexibility.

CIT also launched a new service called "Cloudification" in partnership with several ITSGs. The idea behind Cloudification is to streamline the process by which units move their existing infrastructure and systems to the cloud, and to maximize the benefits of doing so. In November, Cornell will host a higher education Cloud Forum with participants from thirty Association of American University (AAU) schools coming together to share lessons learned and good cloud practices.

The tide is definitely turning for ITSGs in their quest to focus more of their IT resources on their specific mission and less on critical but non-differentiating operational services. The Services Streamlining Initiative (SSI) is making it easier for units to determine which CIT-brokered services are attractive by comparing the costs and value of their own services with those of CIT. Already several academic units ‐ the College of Veterinary Medicine, the College of Human Ecology, the Law School ‐ and administrative units like Student and Campus Life have moved to CIT’s Service Desk for troubleshooting and problem resolution.

Two important plans were developed this year. The Campus Cyberinfrastructure plan, which was initiated by the Center for Advanced Computing (CAC), provides clarity on the roles, responsibilities, issues, and goals necessary to support research computing and infrastructure.

The Cybersecurity Framework is designed to improve our resistance to and ability to recover from increasingly sophisticated cyber attacks. The framework outlines some new technologies, policy enhancements, and compliance protocols that will mitigate risk without impeding the free flow of information upon which our university depends.

I’ve left a lot out of my summary, so I hope you will take some time to read through our Annual Showcase. I welcome your comments and any questions you may have.

Sincerely, Ted Dodds