What is the government’s role in cloud computing?

Sunday - 1/23/2011, 5:47pm EST

The Commerce Department and the National Institute of Standards and Technology are trying to figure out what the federal government’s role in cloud computing should be. The agencies are hosting a panel discussion Tuesday with industry leaders and experts from academia to discuss this as well as other national needs.

A media advisory from the Commerce Department says, “Achieving national priorities – which include a Smart Grid for electricity distribution, electronic health records, cybersecurity, cloud computing and interoperable emergency communications –depends upon the existence of sound technical standards. The standards being developed through public-private partnerships for these new technology sectors are helping to drive innovation, economic growth and job creation.”

Some of the questions the agencies hope to answer at the event:

  • What is the appropriate role for the federal government in convening industry stakeholders and catalyzing standards development and use?
  • How should the federal government engage in sectors where there is a compelling national interest?
  • How are existing public-private initiatives in standardization working?

U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke, Federal Chief Technology Officer Aneesh Chopra, and NIST Director Patrick Gallagher will all speak at the event.

Confirmed panelists include:

  • Mark Chandler, General Counsel, Cisco
  • Arti Rai, Professor of Law, Duke Law School
  • Geoff Roman, Chief Technology Officer, Motorola Mobility
  • Raj Vaswani, Chief Technology Officer, Silver Spring Network
  • Stephen Pawlowski, Senior Fellow and General Manager, Central Architecture and Planning, Intel Corp.
  • Ralph Brown, Chief Technology Officer, CableLabs

The event will be held from 9:30 a.m. – 12 p.m., Tuesday, January 25, 2011 at the Department of Commerce.