What are the issues?

Identifying the issues and potential solutions

The purpose of the first workshop and face-to-face of the Taskforce was to elicit requirements from members of the Taskforce through a frank and open facilitated discussion about the issues. Then, with guidance from IdM experts and Jisc/Janet representatives, to identify solutions, particularly quick wins, that can be dealt with in the co-design timeframe and longer term, bigger issues.

This blog post provides a summary of the day’s discussions, the issues raised and the potential solutions. Although the workshop was held back in July the discussions and outputs are relevant to the ongoing work of the project.

Introduction – Mark Toole
Mark Toole is a member of SCONUL and one of the originators of this idea. He is also the Chair of the Taskforce and gave an introduction to the workshop. Mark described his identity management and library background. He gave an overview of the new co-design process. The taskforce has the role to shape the programme and identify practical things we want to achieve. IdM is about allowing people to access resources. He stressed that we need practical solutions to social and people issues, rather than new technologies.

The Jisc AIM strategy and plan was circulated to the taskforce prior to the workshop to show what Jisc is planning in this area. There will be technologies in the plan but this project is more about people. Jisc is joining the bits together to present a coherent approach.

Gather user requirements
The purpose of this initial morning session was to identify IdM issues in institutions. It was stressed that this should be user led and to not discuss solutions or technical issues at this stage. Delegates were split into 3 groups – red, yellow and green.

Each group spent 10 minutes recording issues on Post-It™ notes and the rest of the time discussing these and grouping them together on flipcharts. For example,

Group issues Group issues Group issues

A representative from each group gave feedback on the discussions and issues identified.

Addressing the Issues
In this afternoon session we concentrated on what could realistically be achieved within 3-6 months but also looked at how longer term work (6+ months) could be addressed. The groups remained as they were before lunch.

Group discussion

During the lunch break the ideas had been summarised into the following three groups:

Governance / Strategy
Ownership of the problem

Management and Admin
Monitoring use
Account management
IT support
Changing roles
Access to other systems
Virtual organisations

Users / User experience
What is available to me?
How do I get it?
Where do I go for help?

The first 10 minutes of this session were spent checking with the attendees that there was nothing missing from the list and that it was a fair and accurate summary of their discussions. With the final list agreed, each group was then asked to select an idea from the list and complete an Idea Template Sheet. It was suggested that groups went through these in order of importance and to select 3-4 issues, spending no more than 15 minutes discussing each issue.

At the end of this session a representative from each group summarised the ideas chosen and the potential solution.

The ideas presented from each group are in the following separate documents:

Document Idea Document Location
issue green 1 Policies/Definitions http://bit.ly/issueG1
issue green 2 Account Management http://bit.ly/issueG2
issue green 3 Purpose of AIM System http://bit.ly/issueG3
issue green 4 Usability http://bit.ly/issueG4
issue green 5 Usage Monitoring http://bit.ly/issueG5
issue red 1 Management / Admin – support http://bit.ly/issueR1
issue red 2 Management + Admin: A thing for Jisc to do http://bit.ly/issueR2
issue red 3 AIM Higher: Culture/Ownership of problem http://bit.ly/issueR3
issue red 4 Licensing http://bit.ly/issueR4
issue yellow 1 Cloud identity http://bit.ly/issueY1
issue yellow 2 Ownership of the problem http://bit.ly/issueY2
issue yellow 3 Granularity http://bit.ly/issueY3
issue yellow 4 What is available to me? http://bit.ly/issueY4

Following the presentations of each idea and corresponding solution, we moved into the final session of the day, which included summary and feedback.

Mark Toole, as Chair of the Taskforce and workshop, gave a summary of the workshop:

  • A number of difficult areas which have big institution-wide ramifications
  • Many of the issues go beyond the traditional Jisc community of IT and libraries
    • Some require senior management engagement for effective resolution
  • Most of the issues appear to be common to most institutions
  • A number of long standing issues, particularly in the policy area
  • Proposed solutions:
    • A number involve briefing materials and awareness raising
    • Some pilots
  • Fundamental question: what is the purpose of an AIM system?
  • How can AIM systems support other systems and new services (eg analytics)

Mark O’Connor, who was facilitating the workshop, collated feedback from the attendees on lessons learned from the day. The feedback was as follows:

Done well
Pre-reading, list of delegates and roles
Good mix of views and representatives.
Mechanistic approach/process, but required to get through the day.

Didn’t do well
Could have had one user day followed by one expert day.
What do we do with the issues we didn’t discuss? Too much for group to think about.
Not enough representation.
Was a day enough?

Would change
Who else should we be engaging with?
Need to raise awareness of IdM issues.
Get right messages to vice-chancellors, engage with senior level executive.

Before closing the workshop the Taskforce was told that all the ideas would be put up online (see above) for comment from all members of the Taskforce, including those unable to attend. Following the workshop a report would be produced (this blog post is a summary of that report), but most importantly an action plan for the project to take us up to January 2014. The plan will be described in the next blog post.