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IPv6 Medics Without Borders

At its November 5th plenary, the Canadian ICT Standards Advisory Committee approved the recommendations of the Canadian IPv6 Task Group set up by isacc in april. The 50 members of the Task Group were invited to individually produce a list of seven recommendations. Received inputs were collated, debated, ranked and ultimately distilled down to a pair of quite straightforward recommendations for immediate action: mandate support of IPv6 in Federal Government ICT procurements and set up a IPv6 Centre of Excellence with the help of Government, Industry and the Research and Education Community.

Later in the month, the Canadian approach was also presented at the 4th African IPv6 Summit held in conjunction with the Afrinic Conference in Dakar, Senegal and generated a lot of interest and discussion.

A participant commented on the Centre of Excellence approach as well as the African continent wide IPv6 training initiatives by Afrinic and the IPv6 information sites such as RIPE‘s recently announced IPv6actnow. What was missing, she said, was a group of ‘Médecins IPv6 sans Frontières’ to help write or review the IPv6 requirements when Government entities or private sector companies prepare or update calls for tender for ICT equipment or services and eventually to help evaluate the responses. Even the best IPv6 website and IPv6 training does not fill this void. To rely on current equipment suppliers has drawbacks and their often expensive professional services to help with a network audit and recommendations are hard to justify. Consequently IPv6 requirements are too often put on the backburner.

This reminded me of a coffee break comment by a participant at the Ottawa plenary early november: He felt the need for his company to go forward with IPv6 but they were not sure what to put in their tender document while their service provider told them that there was not really that much urgency or need to hurry.

IPv6 Medics without Borders could indeed be a useful component of the Canadian IPv6 Centre of Excellence.

Wishing you all a happy and prosperous jump into the next decade.

By Yves Poppe, Director, Business Development IP Strategy at Tata Communications

(Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in these articles are solely those of the author and are not in any way attributable to nor reflect any existing or planned official policy or position of his employer in respect thereto.)

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