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Doing More with Less, Learning How to Implement Open Source IAM

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Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

June 10, 2020

By Jessica Fink, InCommon/Internet2

In higher education and research, we often “do more with less,” by architecting solutions to meet the needs of our campuses while staying within a tight budget. As organizations return from COVID closings, higher ed faces a new set of challenges: maintaining virtual and hybrid solutions amidst the climate of reduced budgets and resources. 

Open source solutions can often provide a lower entry cost, but still require staff that know the terminology and technology, and are comfortable navigating a community and getting answers without a support line to call.

InCommon created BaseCAMP to fill a void identified by the community, providing a place to go for basic information on identity management and related open source software. The 20-hour virtual workshop (spread over five days) includes introductory information about identity and access management (IAM), federated identity management, and the community-built suite of IAM software and services: the InCommon Trusted Access Platform. The presenters at BaseCAMP (we call them counselors to go with our CAMP theme) come from the community and attendees can learn from their triumphs and mistakes. 

The InCommon Trusted Access Platform, in particular, draws interest because it was built by higher education and research to address specific needs for that community. Lacey Vickery, from the University of North Carolina Charlotte, explains her interest in this platform. 

“Currently UNC Charlotte has a mixture of open source InCommon products, like Shibboleth, and closed source vendor software. While this approach has worked for us so far, our long-term goal of incorporating more components of the InCommon Trusted Access Platform will help standardize on a set of IAM tools developed specifically for higher education. Hopefully this will provide a common set of products and terminology to make integration with other institutions in the UNC system more seamless.”

BaseCAMP also includes a day dedicated to learning about the InCommon federation and another on how to build your project plan and design your implementation. 

Whether you have a vendor solution, open source solution, or a hybrid of both, come to BaseCAMP to learn the basics from your peers and explore how federation and the InCommon Trusted Access Platform can meet your institution’s requirements, as well as helping you to do more with less moving forward.

Program and registration information: