Qatar National Research and Education Network (QNREN)

QNREN Connection Policy

Background and Definitions

  1. This Connection Policy defines the conditions under which organisations may be connected to QNREN. *Note 1

  2. QNREN is the name given both to an electronic communications network and a collection of electronic communications networking services and facilities that support the requirements of the Qatar’s education and research community. QNREN is hosted by Qatar University on behalf of its connected institutions and its partner funding bodies. QNREN is not for public use. *Note 2

  3. The mission of QNREN includes a commitment “to provide a high quality national network infrastructure for the Qatar higher education, further education, research communities and schools”. The Connection Policy is determined by the current level of resources available to support QNREN’s network services, and by the over-riding requirement to achieve the primary purpose of QNREN.

  4. Each establishment shall pay annual fees as determined from time to time by QNREN. QNREN shall determine the Service Level Agreement and fees annually for the subsequent fiscal year. Annual fees shall not become an obligation of any connected establishment until the commencement of the fiscal year and no sooner than ninety (90) days from the date of written notification of QNREN’s action establishing such fees.

  5. QNREN will offer a Service Level Agreement specifying what the annual fee will cover. QNREN can at any time introduce new service and give the connected members an option to pay for it, in addition to the standard connection charge.

  6. Any institution may terminate their contract to QNREN after giving not less than sixty (60) days’ prior written notice to the CEO to withdraw. QNREN shall not be required to reimburse such terminating institution for any portion of fees, assessments or amounts paid, nor to relieve such terminating institution of any obligation of such institution which has accrued on or before the effective date of such institution’s termination. On contract termination the institution shall allow reasonable access within ninety (90) days for QNREN to retrieve its own equipment. QNREN will not be responsible for making good any such site after equipment removal.

  7. QNREN may terminate the institution’s contract with immediate effect if such institution is more than one hundred and twenty (120) days in arrears in the payment of any fees or other financial obligation or breaches or violates any provision of QNREN’s policies or procedures or any contract held with QNREN.

Types of Connection

Four types of connection are defined as follows:

  1. A PRIMARY connection is one provided by QNREN and delivers the full range of services specified in the QNREN Service Level Agreement (SLA).

  2. A SPONSORED connection is not subject to the QNREN SLA, and is provided by an organisation that holds a PRIMARY connection. A SPONSORED connection is provided to a single organisation for its own use and where the provision is compatible with the overall remit of QNREN to serve the needs of its user base in a manner consistent with public policy. It is not intended to be used to connect other, third parties (for example via the connection of a network serving such third parties). A SPONSORED connection does not receive the full range of QNREN services as standard. *Note 3

  3. A PROXY connection is use of QNREN that is made indirectly by a third party that does not otherwise have authority to connect to QNREN, through use of application software running on equipment operated by an organisation with a PRIMARY Connection. *Note 4

  4. An INTERCONNECT connection is not subject to the QNREN SLA and is provided by QNREN to connect other networks to QNREN. Depending upon individual agreement, the connection may include the provision of transit via QNREN to other networks connected to QNREN.

Eligibility to Connect

  1. Various types of organisation within the State of Qatar are eligible to be connected to QNREN, as follows.

  2. All Higher Education Institutions, Further Education Colleges and schools, that are each eligible for a PRIMARY connection.

  3. Research establishments and units may choose to have PRIMARY, SPONSORED or PROXY connections.

  4. Any other organisation may be provided with a PRIMARY connection with the permission of the QNREN in accordance with its terms of reference. This permission is normally granted through a request from the organisation to QNREN, which then uses the provisions of the Annex to this Connection Policy to determine eligibility to connect.

  5. Any other organisation may be provided with a SPONSORED connection at the discretion of the host organisation, provided that the organisation receiving the connection is eligible to do so under the provisions of the Annex to this Connection Policy *Note 5; that the connection is provided for the receiving organisation’s own use.

  6. Any other organisation may be allowed a PROXY connection at the discretion of the host organisation.

  7. An organisation responsible for the operation of a network may be offered an INTERCONNECT connection with the express agreement of QNREN and will consult with Qatari Ministry of Information and Communications Technology as necessary. *Note 6

Eligibility to Provide Sponsored and Proxy Connections

  1. A SPONSORED connection may be provided by an organisation that has a PRIMARY connection. Provision is subject to the proviso that use by the SPONSORED organisation is primarily in support of the teaching, learning, research and business aims of the sponsoring organisation.

  2. An organisation holding a SPONSORED connection may not itself provide further SPONSORED connections or connections to third parties.

  3. Any organisation holding a PRIMARY connection may provide PROXY connections.

Acceptable Use

  1. All use of QNREN by any connected organisation is subject to the QNREN’s Acceptable Use Policy. All use of QNREN by an organisation receiving a PRIMARY connection is also subject to QNREN’s Terms for the Provision of the QNREN Service.

Connection of Peer Networks

  1. Connection of peer networks within the State of Qatar is subject to agreement with QNREN, which will consult with Qatari Ministry of Information and Communications Technology as necessary.

Explanatory Notes

  1. This Policy does not address the question of any charges that may be levied for connection, or for the use which may be made of the network once connected. For the former, refer to Terms for the Provision of the QNREN Service provided by QNREN; for the latter, see the QNREN Acceptable Use Policy.

  2. The primary focus of QNREN is on the Higher and Further Education as well as Research communities, but support is also given to other parts of the education community. It is recognised that many organisations, as part of their individual missions, will want to work with their local communities. In carefully controlled circumstances reasonable fees for use of the network by others can help to support the main focus of QNREN.

  3. The sponsoring organisation is responsible for all support of the SPONSORED connection. The physical connection may or may not actually be made via the sponsoring organisation, at its discretion.

  4. A PROXY connection may be used for providing an intermittent service for third parties which may be used for accessing electronic mail etc. Such a connection also enables use to be made of QNREN through data-serving software that runs on a site of an organisation with a PRIMARY. This category of connection also includes the serving of World Wide Web (WWW) pages from an HTTP server and files from a File Transfer Protocol (FTP) server. The host organisation is responsible for all support of the beneficiary organisation.

  5. SPONSORED connections are provided by organisations holding PRIMARY, subject to the terms of licenses issued by QNREN.

  6. Networks offered INTERCONNECT connections will normally be directly supporting the provision of networking services to the broader education and/or the research community or be involved in the delivery of educational services to communities not directly connected to QNREN.


Organisations outside the Higher and Further Education and Research Communities Eligible for Connection to QNREN

The details of the categories of organisation that can normally be connected to QNREN under the provisions of paragraphs 15 and 16 of this Connection Policy are given below. All matters of interpretation of these categories and their memberships are dealt with by QNREN in the first instance, and with reference to the QNREN Board and the Communications Regulatory Authority as appropriate.

Category (1): organisations involved primarily with the delivery or support of education and research but not otherwise in the QNREN community.

1.1. Other organisations receiving funding from the Higher Education Institutions or Further Education Institutions funding bodies or National Research Fund but not currently connected to QNREN and whose purpose is not wholly the delivery of learning or research.

1.2. Educational organisations including other colleges not currently connected (including privately funded colleges), education authorities or education departments of local authorities, and schools (including privately funded schools). Other organisations set up to deliver lifelong learning but not necessarily publicly funded (e.g. education and learning centres, e-learning centres, etc.).

1.3. Public libraries, either directly or via local authorities.

1.4. Not for profit museums, galleries and archives both publicly and privately funded.

1.5. Organisations broadly involved in promoting learning activities and with express sponsorship from a collaborating Higher Education Institution, Further Education Institution or National Research Fund.

Category (2): organisations working with or linked with education or research or with other public sector activities, and organisations wishing to receive or deliver educational or research services from or to the QNREN community.

2.1. Local or unitary authorities and other public sector bodies, for the purpose of delivering lifelong learning along with other services that cannot be disaggregated from lifelong learning services.

2.2. Health Service organisations not associated with Higher Education, Further Education or research organisations, but that require lifelong learning, professional development etc. to be delivered via QNREN, where other activities are carried out primarily by using a health service network.

2.3. Not for profit professional bodies (e.g. Institute of Electrical Engineers, Computer Societies, Institute of Physics, etc.).

2.4. Commercial organisations including those on science and business parks, innovation centres, research units and incubator units, and spin-out companies wishing to collaborate with the QNREN community on research, learning or teaching, or wishing to receive learning, research or development services from members of the QNREN community.

2.5. Commercial organisations such as electronic publishers and content and applications services providers wishing to deliver non-chargeable or chargeable services to the QNREN community and which the QNREN community wishes to receive via QNREN.

Category (3): organisations wishing to use QNREN for purposes other than teaching, learning or collaborative research.

3.1. Partner organisations allied to education or research and collaborating on teaching, learning, research or development with the sponsoring organisation, where the organisations wish to use QNREN to support their normal activities.

3.2. Local and unitary authorities and other public sector bodies for other public sector activities not directly concerned with learning, but where the use of QNREN is to the benefit of the local community or to the public in general.