Grid Computing: the Next Decade


Grid computing has been promoted for more than 10 years as the global computing infrastructure of the future. Many scientists and others have considered Grid computing as one of main sources of the impact that scientific and technological changes have made on the economy and society. This claim is based on the observation that the usage of large data volumes has become increasingly important to many disciplines, from natural sciences, engineering to the humanities and social sciences. However, despite significant investments in the grid concept, the number of users is not increasing. Instead, new concepts (or at least new terms) like cloud computing seem to be replacing the grid computing approach (or name).

Many fields have depended on computational science simulations, and many now are beginning to depend on computationally intensive data analysis. Infrastructure providers seek to build computational systems that support these researchers. Developing the common vision that is needed to support these efforts is the eventual goal of this activity. The meeting will bring international experts representing such distributed scientific infrastructures as XSEDE, PRACE, EGI, OSG, NAREGI, APAC Grid, FutureGrid, PL-Grid and many others.

The program offers keynote talks by Grid and Cloud computing prominent thinkers as well as presentations of modern distributed computing infrastructures, capabilities and applications from users and community leaders. The meeting will also serve to build research and collaboration bridges between European, US, Asia-Pacific and other region's research organizations. Moreover, a panel with representatives from US, European, Chinese and Japanese funding agencies will discuss funding opportunities for cross-boundary, global collaborations.

  • Miron Livny, University of Wisconsin
  • Ian Foster, Computation Institute, talk Sponsored by the Rev. Julius A. Nieuwland Lecture Series
  • Edward Seidel, Louisiana State University
  • Peter Coveney, University College London, talk Sponsored by the "Edison Lecture" Series
  • Hai Zhuge, Chinese Academy of Sciences

Whatever is said about grid computing, it is still a key element of global cyberinfrastructure. The largest scientific computational collaborations, such as LHC, LIGO, CMS, etc. have deployed and depend on grid computing infrastructures as their production computing engines. Workshop organizers will drive discussions around the process by which a national, continental, or global grid computing vision might be established. The following questions will be addressed:

  • What are the global scientific problems we need to work together on (Climate change, EarthCube cyberinfrastructure, Emmissions, New energy sources, Â…)?
  • Who are the key stakeholders who need to be involved?
  • How the global community should move towards truly integrating grid elements at all levels, including those of individual investigators, campuses, countries, and regions?
  • How do we move towards integrating networks, clusters, supercomputers, grids, and clouds?
  • How do we provide integrated support and training for users?
  • How do we integrate software and middleware across this variety of systems?
  • How do we provide sufficiently simple abstractions that developers can write applications once, and run them anywhere?
  • How do we unify authentication and accounting?
  • And underlying all of these decisions, what metrics do they seek to maximize in these processes, and how will they measure them?

Answering these questions is critically important to many science domains, and while the workshop organizers do not think they will actually be able to answer them completely, they believe that this workshop and the subsequent report will make a significant contribution toward establishing a common vision among the community leaders who will have to do the work to unify the field, and among the government agencies who will be asked to fund the activities.


Konstantinos Glinos, DG INFSO, European Union: "e-Infrastructures in EU"
Edward Seidel, National Science Fundation, USA: "Grand Challenge Applications of the Next Decade"
Ian Foster, Computation Institute, USA: "Scientific Computing in 2020: Grids, Clouds, Skies, ..."
Hai Zhuge, Chinese Academy of Science: "Knowledge Grid"
Prof. Anthony Tyson, University of California
Peter Coveney & Nour Shublaq, UCL, UK: "Distributed Computing: The Whole Truth and Nothing but the Truth"
Prof. Alexander Szalay, Johns Hopkins University
Miron Livny, University of Wisconsin, USA: "What will it take to keep us accountable for our promises?"