Seventh framework programme



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Activities’ descriptions
1.1.1.1.NA1: Management of the Consortium

The EGEE-III project is the third in the EGEE programme which started under the European Commission’s Sixth Framework Programme in 2004. The EGEE programme has seen a constant increase in the number of user communities supported, countries and sites connected to the infrastructure, collaborating projects and partners in the consortium. The management activity of the project will build on the experience gained by its predecessors to cope with these increases while remaining lean in terms of resources required and efficient in its decision-making processes.

The overall management structure, including relevant boards, composition and information flow, is described in further detail in section 2.1. The NA1 activity will provide the necessary support to allow for an effective technical/strategic, administrative and financial management of the project. In order to effectively work with non-European members of the consortium, which are participating without any EC contribution, travel funds (92,000€, as described in section 2.4), covering all participating countries from Asia Pacific, the Americas, and the Commonwealth of Independent States have been foreseen to cover the costs of inviting key collaborators from these regions to attend EGEE events. These travel funds will be managed by NA1, according to the schedule of EGEE events and the project’s requirements.

The lead partner, CERN, will appoint a dedicated overall Project Director. Dr. Robert Jones has demonstrated his considerable experience and skills in organizing and running the EGEE and EGEE-II predecessor projects and has been entrusted with this role. He will chair and manage the Activity Management Board (AMB). He will be assisted by a Technical Director, Dr. Erwin Laure, who has also been a member of the project management team in EGEE and EGEE-II. The Technical Director will also act as Deputy Project Director, and will chair and manage the Technical Management Board (TMB). The management team is completed with a Quality Assurance coordinator who will lead Quality Assurance activities in the project, which are detailed further below.

The project management will receive assistance from the CERN legal and financial services during the project negotiation and execution. The management team will be supported by a dedicated Project Office (PO), which has successfully administered the EGEE and EGEE-II projects and will form a solid basis on which the management can rely. It will be composed of a project secretary, a financial officer and two administrative assistants. The PO will be responsible for setting up and maintaining the tools necessary for the smooth-running of the project administration, notably with the Project Progress Tracking tool for effort monitoring, email lists and document repositories. Further, the PO will coordinate the Gender Action Plan activities, using aforementioned tools to collect statistics on the composition of the workforce and devising suitable mechanisms for raising awareness of gender issues among project partners.

The Project Director and Technical Director of the project will interact closely with the EGI_DS project management team to check the progress of the parallel goals and ensure carefully timed milestones are met to ensure the progress of the projects towards a sustainable model. These milestones, agreed with the EGI_DS management, are illustrated in Figure below. In a series of joint workshops EGEE will provide input to EGI_DS, such as deliverable DSA1.6 of EGEE-II (WS1), the status of National Grid Operating Centers (gNOC) will be reviewed (WS2), and based on this input the EGI_DS blueprint document will be developed and discussed (WS3). This blueprint document will form the basis of the draft transition plan (DNA1.4) EGEE-III will develop and discuss at its annual conference, EGEE’08. This plan will detail the steps needed to migrate EGEE’s operation to EGI, identify major risks and shortcomings and develop stop gap strategies in case a full transition seems unlikely in the remaining lifetime of EGEE-III. The implementation of this transition plan will start in project year two and the EGEE description of work will be updated accordingly, taking into account any major changes to the programme of work to ensure the objectives are met. The status of the transition will be reviewed at the EGEE’09 conference (MNA1.5) which will probably also see the EGI launch workshop. This interaction is paramount for the overall coherence of plans, both technical and strategic. In addition to the technical work outlined above, EGEE-III’s adoption of JRUs will provide the necessary legal and organisational groundwork for EGI as discussed in Section 3.1.

The project will actively participate in concertation initiatives and meetings related to the e-Infrastructures and other related areas including the participation and contribution in relevant working groups established under the above initiative. The objective of the concertation activity is to optimise synergies between projects and the collective impact and value of the programme.


Figure : Timelines of the EGEE-III and EGI_DS projects

Quality Assurance

NA1 will host the Quality Assurance (QA) coordinator to oversee QA aspects of the project and ensure its processes, services and deliverables are of high-quality. This work will build on the QA approach established in predecessor projects and will expand the metrics programme with country reviews, described below. The Quality Assurance coordinator will also advise the Project Director in the AMB.
Quality Assurance organisation

Quality Assurance (QA) will be pervasive throughout all EGEE-III activities and each activity will plan for their QA measures as part of the activity tasks. A Quality Assurance Group (QAG) overseeing QA across the project will be established, composed of representatives from all activities, chaired by the QA coordinator and will meet on regular basis. The main role of the representatives is first to develop activity-specific QA plans (Quality Plan and Measurement Plan) and then to make sure that agreed quality measures are applied, verified and tested inside their activity. The QA coordinator will continue to monitor the project-wide adherence to the overall quality plans, in particular to the metrics programme and the federation review process.



In particular, the Quality Assurance activities will focus on:

  1. Defining the quality criteria by which the Grid related services provided by EGEE-III can be evaluated and measured by drawing up the project’s quality and quality measurement plan. The overall quality plan is supported by specific activity quality plans, describing how they are applied inside each activity, as well as defining specific QA measures related to each activity. Overall project metrics are defined in the proposal with targets to measure the uptake and impact of activities, as well as to measure the quality and scale of services provided (see section 1.2). The QA website will act as a knowledge-base and access point for the all adopted procedures and tools, and as an archive of measurements taken via the metrics programme. The QA knowledge base will be made available to other groups and projects (the QA tools and procedures of the predecessor project, EGEE-II, were adopted by at least three other projects).

  1. Monitoring country reviews: the EGEE-III consortium is notable by its size (number of partners) and the inclusion of Joint Research Units and National Grid Initiatives facilitating the evolution to national structures. In order to monitor the progress of the programme of work in each country and the involvement of individual partners, the country reviews, introduced in the predecessor project EGEE-II as “federation reviews” for key activities, will be used systematically across the whole project. These reviews will provide a forum to discuss issues, examine progress and contribution and establish better communication between individual partners, the activity managers and project management. They are also foreseen as a good opportunity to identify and promote regional successes and initiatives for re-use in other countries. The output of these reviews will be reports (deliverables DNA1.6.1-2) providing an overview of the state of national Grid structures in each country which can be used to refine the programme of work and migration to a sustainable model.

  1. Follow up of deliverables and milestones: this covers the regular monitoring of the deliverables & milestones schedule according to the deliverables and milestones review procedure, whereby given activities are involved in the review of other activity reports. The QA website provides the follow-up for deliverables and milestones according to the deliverables and milestones review procedure2. This procedure, established and successfully used in the predecessor projects EGEE and EGEE-II results in a high quality of deliverables and milestones produced on schedule.

  1. Following up industry standards and best practices for IT service management, such as ISO/IEC 20000-1/-2:2005 and ITIL: the result of the task is the presentation of those standards to the project and identification of best practices that should be adopted by the project.


Task description

The management activity will carry out the following tasks to ensure the project runs efficiently to meet all targets, deliverables and milestones:



  1. TNA1.1: Management of the NA1 activity and the work of the Project Office

This includes the provision of all the tools and procedures used in the execution of the project. It also includes effort monitoring and Gender Action Plan statistics. The Project Progress Tracking tool (PPT) was devised during EGEE to monitor effort consumption through the collection of timesheets. This tool improved the reporting cycle efficiency and provided an excellent means for collecting information about participants for the Gender Action plan. Continued funding for the use and support of the PPT tool is essential to monitor and produce effort reports for the periodic management reports, and obtain statistics on the EGEE-III workforce for the Gender Action Plan.

In the second year, the management activity will identify relevant project, technical management and project office tasks (including event organisation) that need to be transitioned to EGI. Regular meetings should start once EGI assigns appropriate staff.

  1. TNA1.2: Project and consortium management

This covers all reporting, cost statement collection and analysis, interim payment coordination and transfer, budget follow-up, management-level liaison with partners, collaborating projects and other Grid initiatives, as well as relations with the European Commission. This task includes the running and leadership of the AMB. The AMB will document its work in summaries of meetings with a decision list which will be reported in the Quarterly and Periodic Reports (DNA1.1.1-6 and DNA1.7.1-2).

  1. TNA1.3: Technical management

This covers the running and leadership of the TMB, in collaboration and liaison with the AMB. The TMB will document its work in summaries of meetings with a decision list, which will be reported in the Quarterly and Periodic Reports (DNA1.1.1-6, and DNA1.7.1-2). This will include technical liaison with partners, collaborating projects and other Grid initiatives.

In year 2, the TMB will pro-actively monitor the detailed tasks that have been drawn up as part of the second year plans approved by the review panel.

As part of the revised plans for the second year of the project, from PM13, each month the TMB will review the progress of the product teams operating within JRA1 and the software development of operational tools within SA1. For JRA1, the delivery of work (as defined in MJRA1.3.2), the quality of the delivered software, and the resources consumed (from the PPT effort monitoring tool) will be reviewed and feedback provided to the project. This will include reviewing any changes to the MJRA1.3.2 workplan – each product’s release roadmap for node type specific patches – as reflected in Savannah. For SA1 the operations tools under development for regional deployment during the second year will be regularly reviewed by the TMB and expected to follow the engineering best practices used elsewhere in the project (i.e. JRA1 & SA3). This meeting will effectively constitute the formation of an EGEE only Middleware Coordination Board as envisaged by EGI for the final year of the project. The TMB will review the ‘contractual’ relationship with middleware providers (i.e. prototype the gLite collaboration) and its product teams during the first 6 months of the second year.

In year 2, the TMB will pro-actively monitor the detailed tasks that have been drawn up as part of the second year plans approved by the review panel.

  1. TNA1.4: Quality assurance coordination

This task will ensure the Quality Assurance inside EGEE-III, as described above. This includes the Quality Group coordination and QA follow-up, federation review coordination, deliverables and milestones coordination, follow-up on industry standards and best practices for IT service management.

In the second year, based on the experience of the first year of the project and on the feedback received from the first project review, the metrics programme will undergo a major review to reflect in a meaningful way the end user experience of the availability of the service and the quality of the support. Starting in the fifth quarter with DNA1.1.4, the Quarterly report will be tailored towards the evolving EGI model and a country-based reporting approach.

  1. TNA1.5: Sustainability

This task will ensure close collaboration with the EGI_DS project, together with NA5, to follow the development of the sustainability plans and of the schedule for the transition from EGEE-III to EGI.

  1. TNA1.6: Organisation of key EGEE events and meetings

Regular face-to-face meetings and conferences are crucial to the project as they enable effective cross-interaction between activities, with other projects, user communities and businesses. These events cover meetings of all the relevant project bodies described in section 2.1 and project reviews. This task will in particular cover the organisation of User Forums (once per year) and the Project Conferences (once per year), in conjunction with NA4, NA2 and other project activities. Both the User Forum and the Project conference involve work to find sponsors and to establish contacts between the sponsors and the local organisers of the event. After the events, an evaluation will be performed together with the local organisers.

NA1 Activity summary and manpower


Objectives

The objective of this activity is to provide:



  1. Overall project management and reporting to the European Commission;

  1. Daily management of the project activities, resource allocation and monitoring;

  1. Conflict resolutions and corrective actions;

  1. Overall Quality Assurance for the project;

  1. Establish and maintain relations with key external bodies and projects;

  1. Collaborate with EGI_DS to ensure long-term sustainability plans are successful.




Description of work and role of partners

All tasks described below will be accomplished by the coordinating partner, CERN, with the exception of TNA1.4 which will be covered by BT-IC.



  1. TNA1.1: Management of the NA1 activity and the work of the Project Office

Internal activity management: This task will cover all administrative aspects in and around the lead partner, CERN, interaction with its management, and will be fundamental to the operation of the activity. In the second year, the management activity will identify relevant project, technical management and project office tasks (including event organisation) that need to be transitioned to EGI. Regular meetings should start once EGI defines appropriate staff.

The effort required for this task is 60 PM provided by CERN.



  1. TNA1.2: Project and consortium management

This covers all reporting, cost statement collection and analysis, interim payment coordination and transfer, budget follow-up, liaison with partners, collaborating projects and other Grid initiatives, relations with the European Commission.

The manpower required for this task is 36PM provided by CERN.



  1. TNA1.3: Technical management

This covers the running and leadership of the Technical Management Board (TMB), in collaboration and liaison with the Activity Management Board (AMB). This will include technical liaison with partners, collaborating projects and other Grid initiatives.

In year 2, the TMB will pro-actively monitor the detailed tasks that have been drawn up as part of the second year plans approved by the review panel.

As part of the revised plans for the second year of the project, from PM13, each month the TMB will review the progress of the product teams operating within JRA1 and the software development of operational tools within SA1. For JRA1, the delivery of work (as defined in MJRA1.3.2), the quality of the delivered software, and the resources consumed (from the PPT effort monitoring tool) will be reviewed and feedback provided to the project. This will include reviewing any changes to the MJRA1.3.2 workplan – each product’s release roadmap for node type specific patches – as reflected in Savannah. For SA1 the operations tools under development for regional deployment during the second year will be regularly reviewed by the TMB and expected to follow the engineering best practices used elsewhere in the project (i.e. JRA1 & SA3). This meeting will effectively constitute the formation of an EGEE only Middleware Coordination Board as envisaged by EGI for the final year of the project. The TMB will review the ‘contractual’ relationship with middleware providers (i.e. prototype gLite collaboration) and its product teams during the first 6 months of year II.
The manpower required for this task is 24PM provided by CERN.

  1. TNA1.4: Quality assurance coordination

This task will ensure the Quality Assurance inside EGEE-III, by defining appropriate procedures, tools and metrics as well as monitoring their implementation. It includes the Quality Group coordination and QA follow-up, federation review coordination, deliverables and milestones coordination, follow-up on industry standards and best practices for IT service management.

In the second year, based on the experience of the first year of the project and on the feedback received from the first project review, the metrics programme will undergo a major review to reflect in a meaningful way the end user experience of the availability of the service and the quality of the support. Starting in the fifth quarter with DNA1.1.4, the Quarterly report will be tailored towards the evolving EGI model and a country-based reporting approach.
The manpower required for this task is 24PM provided by BT-IC.

  1. TNA1.5: Sustainability

This task will ensure close collaboration with the EGI_DS project, together with NA5, to follow the development of the sustainability plans and of the schedule of the transition from EGEE-III to EGI.

The manpower required for this task is 12PM provided by CERN.



  1. TNA1.6: Organisation of EGEE events and meetings

This task includes all aspects of the organisation of all project Board meetings, and major events such as the User Forum and the Conference.

The manpower required for this task is 12PM provided by CERN.





NA1 Deliverables


Deliverable No

Deliverable title

Delivery date

Nature

Dissemination level

Deliverable description

DNA1.1.1-6

Quarterly Report

3,6,9,15,18,21

R

CO

Report on the quarterly progress of the project, covering each activity and the project overall technical, financial, administrative and strategic aspects.

DNA1.2

Quality Plan and Measurement Plan

3

R

PU

This report will outline the QA process and metrics devised for the project to monitor progress of the activities and of the project as a whole. This plan will also include the procedures and initial schedule for the country reviews.

DNA1.3.1

Gender Action Plan

3

R

PU

Report on the activities planned to raise gender awareness in the project

DNA1.4

Plan for transition to a sustainable infrastructure

6

R

PU

This plan will detail the steps needed to migrate EGEE’s operation to EGI, identify major risks and shortcomings and develop stop gap strategies in case a full transition seems unlikely in the remaining lifetime of EGEE-III. This plan may result in a modified Description of Work for EGEE-III updated for the second year.

DNA1.5.1-2

Annual Report on quality status

11,23

R

PU

This report will provide an annual review of the QA status of the project

DNA1.6.1-2

Summary report of the country reviews

11,23

R

PU

These reports will provide a summary of the outcome of the reviews by country and by activity in each federation.

DNA1.7.1-2

Periodic report

12,24

R

CO

Report on the periodic progress and financial status of the project covering each activity and the project overall technical, financial, administrative and strategic aspects.

DNA1.3.2

Report on Gender Action Plan

22

R

PU

Report on the GAP activities throughout the project.




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