Right after Amazon Web Services announced the integration of cloud computing skills courses in seven Indian engineering colleges, the Seattle-based cloud giant has now announced the launch of Frontier Technologies Cloud Innovation Center (CIC). For the uninitiated, a CIC is a program run by AWS wherein it offers its technology and expertise to non-profit organizations, educational establishments, or government agencies for resolving challenges.
The Frontier Technologies CIC is the first AWS CIC in India. AWS has partnered with NITI (National Institution for Transforming India) Aayog, a Government of India policy think tank, to bring the CIC program to India. Other than being the first AWS CICI in India, the Frontier Technologies CIC is also the first of its kind CIC that AWS has set up in partnership with any government at a national level.
As AWS defines it, the core mission of the CIC is “to drive continuous innovation in delivering citizen services by deploying leading-edge technologies.” Talking of Frontier Technologies CIC, it will focus on areas such as agriculture, health, skill development, and employment. Frontier Technologies will be able to access the entire gamut of AWS services including compute, storage, analytics, and networking services.
The program will surely provide a much-needed technological impetus to the largely tech-deficient Indian government machinery. Anna Roy, the senior adviser at NITI Aayog, spoke about the program stating, “the objective of the CIC program is to provide cloud Infrastructure, developers and support of global subject matter experts to develop high quality affordable technology solutions for improving the lives of citizens of India in high impact sectors.”
Ben Butler, the global lead for AWS CICs, also talked about the program’s significance stating, “we invite public sector organizations in India to submit real-world challenges to the NITI Aayog Frontier Technologies CIC. We will combine public sector knowledge of the community and use AWS technologies to address selected challenges. We will also share the prototypes and documentation that we create as open source with other communities facing similar challenges.”
The Government of India went for a reshuffle a few years ago and reorganized the erstwhile Planning Commission (country’s premier planning body) to form the current NITI Aayog. That AWS has partnered with the country’s premier policy think-tank surely magnifies the importance of Frontier Technologies CIC. This is the 12th CIC by AWS as it already has the program operating in other countries such as Australia, Bahrain, Canada, France, Germany, South Korea, and the United States.
Lastly, after migrating its Public Works Department to the cloud, the move to use cloud services for resolving problems in the public sector is surely a step in the right direction as governments all over the world are looking to leverage cloud services.