Public Sector IT organisations are weary of vendor lock-in. And rightfully so: it is hard to buy cloud services from any supplier you choose and then freely manage these services as if they were part of your own extended private cloud. Main reason: lack of ability to connect different clouds: private, partner, public, etc. Luckily, this barrier is vanishing…

Thirty years ago, Cisco pioneered a strategy to connect previously isolated, heterogeneous networks, which lead to the rise of the Internet as we know it. Now, Cisco is embarking on a journey just as ambitious: the connection of multiple isolated clouds, leading to the creation of the Intercloud: an interconnected cloud of clouds.


The Intercloud relies on a five key principles and technologies, summarised below:

  1. Partner-centric approach: we strongly believe that only a partner-centric Intercloud can deliver the flexibility and choice required by Public Sector customers, adequately responding to the specific context of each agency: language, culture, legislation (including data privacy and sovereignty), processes, sourcing appetite, etc.
  2. Cisco Intercloud Fabric: ICF is an open solution that supports multi-hypervisor and multi-cloud with the freedom to place IT applications across heterogeneous environments in private, provider and ‘hyper-scale’ clouds with a unified policy and end- to-end security for reduced complexity and cost.
  3. Commitment to Open Standards: Since Cisco’s beginnings in the 1980s, we have helped shape the standards that form today’s internet. Following the same line, Cisco is committed to drive open standards such as OpenStack, OpenDaylight, Opflex and Openflow to form tomorrow’s Intercloud.
  4. Application Centric Infrastructure: ACI is a critical technology, supplementing existing Software-Defined Networking (SDN) concepts, which allows Cisco to implement policy control in hybrid cloud environments.
  5. Cloud Service Catalogue: Cisco enables cloud providers (including Public Sector IT agencies) to offer their own, self-branded service catalogue, where they can tailor the offerings available to meet their users’ needs, either proposing in-house applications or third-party services available from the Intercloud ‘marketplace’.

Public Sector IT Leaders are faced with a number of unique barriers and requirements that are slowing down – or stopping altogether – their journey to the cloud:

  • Data sovereignty
  • Budget reduction
  • DC interconnection
  • DevOps enablement
  • Cyber Security
  • Public worker re-skilling
  • Supplier agility (fear of vendor lock-in)
  • Cloud Service Brokerage
  • Transparency and Trust

To understand the nature of these requirements, as well as how the Intercloud is elegantly solving the issues, I invite you to read our recent white paper titled “Understand how the Intercloud elegantly meets Public Sector IT requirements“.

Looking forward to your comments, questions or observations.


Patrick Bikar

Global Systems Engineer Transformation Programs Lead

Global Systems Engineering