In shaping Ryerson University for success and leadership in the 21st century our academic, SRC and international plans lay a path forward. The importance of a Digital Strategy that complements and adds to Ryerson University’s abilities to continue to grow and to be a leader has never been more important then now.
At a national level a New Digital Infrastructure Organization (NDRIO; https://www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/136.nsf/eng/home; https://engagedri.ca/) has emerged. NDRIO is a national not-for-profit organization that will play a critical role helping to advance the establishment of a researcher-focused, accountable, agile, strategic and sustainable Digital Research Infrastructure (DRI) ecosystem for Canadian researchers. Working across ecosystem partners and stakeholders across the country will ensure access to the digital tools, services and infrastructure they need to support leading-edge scientific excellence, research, innovation and advancement across all disciplines. NDRIO’s mandate is critical our universities, and their impact on society as a whole, and Canada’s ability to remain globally competitive. The university is part of the federated national strategy and collaborations extending to cybersecurity and data management. The voracity, veracity and velocity of data and security issues are beginning to dominate the infrastructure challenges to capture, store, access and manage the value that data holds. Within the university the digital infrastructure requirements lie at the intersection of administrative needs, learning and teaching, and SRC.
The Chief Librarian, Chief Information Officer and the Vice-President Research and Innovation, are committed to working together to advance, at this very important juncture in Ryerson’s path forward, a Digital Infrastructure strategy. Ryerson is already demonstrating leadership in our roles in the Canadian Association of Research Libraries (http://www.carl-abrc.ca/), Canadian Shared Security Operations Centre (https://canssoc.ca/), and Canada’s digital research infrastructure ecosystem (e.g. https://www.orion.on.ca/; https://computeontario.ca/; https://www.computecanada.ca/home/).
Undertaking the development and implementation of a digital strategy is important and a priority for the university. We look forward to working with the Ryerson community and key stakeholders in advancing this strategy. We are encouraged by the engagement of key thought leaders across the university who bring important perspectives and experience to the discussions.
We are, however, mindful of the university’s focus at this present time where COVID-19 presents challenging dynamic and continuously changing circumstances. Much of the university’s focus has turned to academic matters related to instruction through the duration of the term and preparing for the requirements to manage the examination period. Continuity of core and essential services, and support for students, faculty and staff, is clearly focusing attention and efforts. Critical issues and pressing priorities have taken over and the community is focused on different priorities right now, and rightfully so.
We will be suspending consultations and stakeholder engagement at this time and do look forward to resuming the strategy development at a time when our collective attention is able to return to this important initiative.
Thank you for your support and we do wish the community well during this challenging and difficult period.
– Carol Shepstone, Chief Librarian
– Steven Liss, Vice-President, Research and Innovation
– Brian Lesser, Chief Information Officer