Data#3 to deploy Cisco network for Edith Cowan University


news Business technology provider Data#3 this week announced it had inked a multi-million dollar deal to provide a “highly available, scalable and future-proof” communications platform for Western Australia’s Edith Cowan University (ECU).

Under the agreement, ECU’s existing network will be replaced with up-to-date Cisco fixed and wireless technology, allowing the university to deliver “a range of new and innovative offerings to students, faculty and staff”.

Initially, the deal will see Data#3 provide all aspects of the project, from strategy to design and implementation.

Once deployment is complete, a Data#3 team will manage the platform in a 3+2 year agreement that is to include all network facilities, including wireless, fixed, security and network management. This arrangement will allow ECU to “focus on strategic business initiatives”, the company said.

Elizabeth Wilson, Chief Information Officer at ECU, said the move is a “key strategic pillar” of the future learning environment at ECU.

“The replacement of the existing network with next generation infrastructure,” she explained, “will enable the provision of advanced services such as rich multimedia learning experiences to students, faculty and staff across ECU campuses.”

Data#3 indicates it was chosen for the project from a panel of Cisco ‘Gold Partners’, with the firm’s local expertise, national education experience and demonstrated capability cited as key factors in the selection process.

“We are delighted to work with ECU,” said Glenn McAtee, Data#3 General Manager – Western Australia. “This is an innovative and transformative project that will deliver a number of great outcomes to the university. The new solution will help to streamline costs and enhance efficiency and agility within ECU.”

Laurence Baynham, Data#3 CEO also commented on the announcement, saying: “Helping customers to transform their business through innovative technology is central to [our] strategy. The success at ECU is a testament to our ongoing investment in the education sector and our reputation in the market for delivering successful outcomes through education specific services.”

The company indicated that the project is progressing according to schedule and works should be complete “in early 2016”.

ECU has more than 23,000 undergraduate and postgraduate students, as well as around 3,600 international students annually at its three campuses in Joondalup, Mount Lawley in metropolitan Perth and at Bunbury.

It boasts four faculties that collectively deliver over 300 courses covering health, engineering and science, education and arts, business and law, and regional professional studies.

Further, ECU incorporates the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts, the largest nursing program in the State, and Kurongkurl Katitjin – a Centre for Australian Indigenous Education and Research.

Image credit: Cisco Systems


  1. ECU was great when I went there about a decade ago (The Bunbury Campus), but into my 2nd and 3rd year there, the Education students started a hostile takeover of the computer labs stopping us Computer Science students from actively doing stuff.

    It was even worse for the CS students doing media though because the Education students would always take over the mac lab, the campus only had 1 mac lab and the media students needed it to do their assignments, tutorials, etc…

    These days though, the Bunbury campus doesn’t even have a computer science degree anymore I don’t think, it was seeing less and less students every year and the Education students were taking over more and more of the building that once housed us CS students.

    Nice to see they are finally upgrading everything, though we did have a secure wireless network, etc… 10yrs ago when I was there, plus they had a couple of ethernet points in each computer lab for hooking your laptop up to.

    Great times I had there, great times, just a shame the Bunbury campus is the unwanted child these days.

  2. I love that Data#3 was chosen because it was a Cisco gold partner. So a decision had already been made to use Cisco gear. As someone who works in the industry, who is concerned about the efficient use of University funding, deploying a Cisco network is an extremely expensive way of achieving this goal. Cisco equipment is extraordinarily expensive in Australia. There have also been serious concerns raised about the integrity of Cisco gear following revelations that backdoors were installed on units shipped in large orders to international customers – a university is a pretty good target.

    But the fact is that Cisco equipment has lower performance for several times the cost of competing gear, for no tangible improvement in reliability. If I was considering going back to do an MBA or retraining, such a choice would make me seriously question the ability of ECU to deliver a high quality of relevant knowledge and skills.

    But then, those that can, do; those that can’t, teach.

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