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ICT Strategy News

1. Welcome

Welcome to the first edition of ICT Strategy News, the newsletter for and about Oxford University's ICT Strategy Steering Group. The newsletter will be published approximately fortnightly and will carry news items relating to the ICT Strategy Programme. Printed copies of ICT Strategy News will be circulated to members of the Steering Group and Work Task members. An electronic version is also publicly available via the ICT Strategy Web site at http://www.ict.ox.ac.uk/strategy/.

If you have any comments or news items please contact Miranda Turner (miranda.turner@oucs.ox.ac.uk).

2. Priorities

Priorities for the next month are:

  1. Publish Item in Gazette (Work Task A)
  2. Consult University and Colleges IT Users Groups (Work Task B)
  3. Identify Strategic Objectives for University ICT (Work Task C)
  4. Select and Visit External Universities (Work Task G)

3. Other Items to Note

  1. The minutes of the first meeting are available via http://www.ict.ox.ac.uk/strategy/
  2. Full details of all work tasks and members are available via http://www.ict.ox.ac.uk/strategy/worktasks
  3. Work Task Guidelines for Leaders are available via http://www.ict.ox.ac.uk/strategy/worktasks
  4. Please complete the Scoping the Landscape for the ICT Strategy survey via http://www.ict.ox.ac.uk/strategy/surveys

4. ICT SSG Launched

The first meeting of the ICT Strategy Steering Group took place on Tuesday, 6 September at the Saïd Business School. The minutes of the first meeting are now available via http://www.ict.ox.ac.uk/strategy/.

The meeting was opened by the Vice-Chancellor who stressed three main points, summarised as follows:

  1. The University’s draft corporate plan included a firm commitment to developing a coherent ICT strategy by April 2006.
  2. Secondly, there would never be sufficient resources to meet all of the University’s aspirations. This underlined the importance of using, to the best possible effect, resources provided for support activities such as ICT.
  3. Finally, one of the University’s great strengths was its federal structure and none of the thinking behind the establishment of the ICT Strategy Steering Group challenged the federal nature of the University. Indeed, conversely, there was scope for a more coherent ICT strategy and set of policies to underpin the enhanced fulfilment of individual aspirations.

The Vice-Chancellor concluded by encouraging everyone to commit energy to ensuring that a visionary ICT strategy was developed, and asked the Steering Group to rise to the challenge of drafting both strategy and policy.

The ICT Strategy Group membership and terms of reference were approved by Council on 12 September 2005.

5. Membership

We are pleased to welcome the following new members of the ICT Strategy Steering Group:

  1. Jerry Fishenden (National Technology Officer, Microsoft)
  2. Bill Olivier (Development Director – Systems and Technology, JISC)
  3. Stephen Parkinson (Humanities Division)
  4. David Popplewell (Medical Sciences Division).

6. Work Tasks

The ICT Strategy Programme is underpinned by a series of Work Tasks. Ten Work Tasks (A-J) were approved (with amendment where applicable) at the first meeting of the Steering Group.

An eleventh Work Task (K) has been added subsequent to the meeting and will focus on developing scenarios which highlight the likely impact and benefits of the ICT Strategy on members of the collegiate University.

We would like to thank everyone who volunteered to join a Work Task either as a leader or member. The Work Tasks and their leaders are as follows:

  1. A: Description and Goals Endorsement and Gazette Publication (Paul Jeffreys)
  2. B: Ongoing Consultations (Sheelagh Treweek and Alan Gay)
  3. C: University Strategic Objectives and Plan (Paul Jeffreys)
  4. D: ICT Requirements for Collegiate University (Anne Trefethen)
  5. E: Federated Environment and Governance (David Watson and Paul Jeffreys)
  6. F: ICT Consultant and Team Interface (Paul Jeffreys)
  7. G: External Research (Nigel Herriott)
  8. H: Large Scale Investments (Paul Jeffreys)
  9. I: Timescales and Costs for the Collegiate University (Mark Clarke and Annette Haworth)
  10. J: Development of Strategic Plan (Paul Jeffreys)
  11. K: Long Term Future-Stating (Michael Fraser)

Each Work Task has a Web page as part of the ICT Strategy Web site which will be updated by Tony Brett as the Work Tasks progress. Further details of all Work Tasks are available via http://www.ict.ox.ac.uk/strategy/

Please contact Charles Shaw (Charles.Shaw@admin.ox.ac.uk) if you are interested in contributing to a Work Task.

7. Work Task Guidelines

The outputs from the Work Tasks are essential to the successful formulation of the University's ICT Strategic Plan. A brief set of guidelines have been produced for Work Task leaders. The full version is available via http://www.ict.ox.ac.uk/strategy/
worktasks/. A summary follows:–

7.1. Membership

It is expected that each Work Task will have between 4-6 members. Work Task leaders are encouraged to select further members from beyond the ICT SSG with the appropriate expertise and/or a representative role. They may also wish to co-opt additional members to assist with specific activities within their Work Task. Finally, they may wish to have additional 'contacts', who are not full members of the Work Task but receive documentation and are able to submit comments.

7.2. Meetings

Jemma Underdown and Charles Shaw are available to assist leaders in arranging meetings for their Work Task. It is suggested that each Work Task holds at least one meeting to refine the remit and agree activities, timescale and responsibilities. Notes should be kept for any meetings held and made available via the Web site. Business conducted between meetings should also be recorded.

7.3. Remit & Context

One of the first activities should be to discuss and agree with Work Task members the remit of the Work Task and, if necessary, further refine it. A Work Plan is being prepared which will specify the deliverables needed in time for each SSG meeting, and the conclusions from this will also be on the Work Task Web pages.

7.4. Work Task Pro Forma

There is a pro forma record for each Work Task which records some basic information about the Work Task together with details of deliverables as they appear. Michael Fraser and Tony Brett are available to assist in the completion of the pro forma (mike.fraser@oucs.ox.ac.uk, tony.brett@oucs.ox.ac.uk). It is intended that the forms are updated as and when necessary, and will form the basis for information about the Work Task on the Web site. A pro forma coversheet is also available for each published deliverable.

8. Acting ICT Director

An 'Acting ICT Director' post has been created to cover the eight months of the ICT Strategy Programme, and Paul Jeffreys has been asked to occupy this position. Stuart Lee has agreed to be the Acting OUCS Director during this period.

9. ICT Landscape Survey

To help us get started on the ICT Strategy and to ensure that all aspects are covered, we would be grateful if you could take a few moments to complete a quick survey to scope the landscape in which the strategy will have to exist, survive and thrive.

Please complete the survey by 30 September.

10. Future Meetings

All future meetings of the ICT Strategy Steering Group will take place at the Saïd Business School:

  1. Meeting 2: Thursday 20 October 2005 at 2pm
  2. Meeting 3: Friday 25 November 2005 at 2pm
  3. Meeting 4: Wednesday 8 February 2006 at 2pm
  4. Final Meeting: Tuesday 11 April 2006 at 2pm

11. Contacts

Dr Bill Macmillan, Chair, ICT Strategy Steering Group

Mr Charles Shaw, Secretary, ICT Strategy Steering Group

Prof Paul Jeffreys, Acting ICT Director

Mr Tony Brett, ICT Strategy Programme Manager

Dr Michael Fraser, Technical Secretary, ICT Strategy Steering Group

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Maintained by: OUCS Webmaster (webmaster@rt.oucs.ox.ac.uk) 2005-09-21T11:36:15. Michael Fraser.
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