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Next Generation Enterprise Web Services Advisory Group

Over the past quarter century, web technologies have grown organically at the University of Toronto. In anticipation of that milestone, last year Academic, Research & Collaborative (ARC) Technologies began an analysis of our enterprise web hosting services. We determined that our current enterprise web hosting services are out of date and don’t reflect current needs and the way in which divisional web services have developed at the University. We also recognized that cyber risk and protecting our websites from cyber attacks needed to be more of a priority.

To move us forward, we have begun working towards the Next Generation of Enterprise Web Services, but we are not re-inventing the wheel. The services we are proposing are based on contemporary best practices, and we’ve already shown the benefits of this with the migration of the University’s main webspace through our strategic partnership with Digital Creative Services (formerly Strategic Communications). Now we need to move the rest of the enterprise web space.

We want to move away from sites that do not use standardized software or controls as the default, and ensure that clients have access to vetted and tested technologies and that plugins and themes are patched in timely ways. We also want to make sure new functionality can be rolled out easily but in a managed way, and as an enterprise service, we want to move away from building custom websites, working with our divisional partners to provide these kinds of context-specific services.

At the same time, we want to ensure that clients that need to do more high-risk activities, like collecting personal information or selling things online, have a way to do so in a highly secure environment.

The advisory group does not have governance or operational responsibilities. Operational responsibilities, including formal strategic planning, continue to reside with the ARC group collaborating with divisional operations groups, and governance will continue to follow the normal governance processes in place. Advice from this group is given to the Project Lead – the ARC manager for Projects & Development – and in turn, to the director of ARC, the CIO, and up to the executive sponsor, VPUO.

Terms of reference

  • Provide a forum for discussion of current and future services, objectives, standards and requirements
  • Review current services and discuss enterprise web services planning across the University
  • Discuss and recommend solutions for improved services and operations related to enterprise web services
  • Enable informed decision-making by operational groups and institutional leadership
  • Monitor and discuss appropriate metrics related to the project and services

Project website


  • Teddy Cameron, Post-Graduate Medical Education
  • Michelle Cortes, Digital Creative Services
  • Caroline De Angelis, Bloomberg Nursing
  • Andrew Egan, University of Toronto Scarborough
  • Joseph Ferenbok, Faculty of Medicine
  • Steven Green, Digital Creative Services
  • Dimitris Keramidas, Faculty of Medicine
  • Bilal Khalid, University of Toronto Libraries
  • Nancy Okada, Student Life
  • Mike Serafin, University of Toronto Mississauga
  • Heeyeon Song, Biomedical Communications
  • Court Van Beek, Discovery Commons