Collaborative Distributed Support (CDS)
Research communities are located across multiple institutions and universities nationally and internationally. High energy physicists, who were working on the discovery of the Higgs Boson are, for example, spread all over the world. Supporting distributed research communities effectively requires a coordinated collaborative model that interconnects the home institutions of researchers.
With this in mind, projects like the Swiss Academic Compute Cloud (SwissACC) have set up termed the Collaborative Distributed Support (CDS), with international equivalents in the EGI Champions , the UK NGS Campus Champions the Strategic Applications Collaborations/Strategic Community Collaborations (SAC/SCC) at SDSC and many more.
CDS interlinks existing local support teams across Switzerland (see the figure below), creating a nationally coordinated support network that enables information exchange: local know-how and experiences, best practices and success stories. Further, feedback from researchers and infrastructure providers helps improve the quality of the services offered. In CDS, researchers find a safe harbour along with coaching on how to best meet their research computational needs. The value add of CDS lies in: removing part of the burden of supporting IT services at universities and research centres and sharing best practices so that everyone in the network can learn from each other, ensuring high performance even when IT personnel changes.
The figure above shows how the CDS delivers the services of the Swiss Academic Compute Cloud project. Local support teams interact directly with users at their institutions, They take the responsibility of providing support and guidance on how to help researchers benefit from the infrastructure, sharing their know-how, training, keeping communities up to date and improving services based on the feedback received.
To date the support network consists in:
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