Our History

Our Story

The UAE has established itself as a leader in using technology in an innovative way. World-class universities are setting up their franchises in UAE attracting students and educators from all over the world. Although internet connectivity and network availability are available to all centers of learning, there has been no dedicated network for research and collaboration within the country. There has also been no international collaboration with NRENs outside the country.

An initiative to create a research and education network was taken up by the Institute of Applied Technology, and they approached Khalifa University for Science, Technology and Research (KUSTAR) with this requirement. United Arab Emirates University, Zayed University and Higher Colleges of Technology also expressed interest in the proposal, and this resulted in an MoU being signed by the leading universities in the UAE in August 2006.

A study was undertaken to determine the feasibility of establishing such a network, the costs involved and the funding options. The study was based on leading NRENs around the world, especially in North America, Europe and the UK. This study was presented to the forum consisting of IAT, UAE University, Zayed University, HCT and Khalifa University. A consensus was soon reached regarding the design and architecture of the network. It was agreed that the proposed network be named ‘Ankabut.’

The task of supervising the use and operation of the network was to be entrusted to a consortium made up of members’ organizations using the network. An MoU to this effect was signed by all the participating universities. It was agreed that Khalifa University would take the role of conveyor until the Consortium was formed and the by-laws formulated.