Introduction to eduGAIN


What is eduGAIN?

eduGAIN (Education Global Authentication Infrastructure) is an international service connecting research communities and higher education identity federations around the world.

It is essentially a federation “peering” service, which routinely imports metadata from multiple participating Higher Education and Research Federations, aggregates the metadata into a single signed document, and serves the aggregate metadata back to federations who then redistribute it to their subscribing identity Providers (IdPs) and Service Providers (SPs).

The Australian Access Federation is now connected to eduGAIN and Service Providers can open their services to international researchers if desired. AAF subscribers can now access services from more than 40 similar federations including the United States and most European countries.

Adding a Service Provider (SP) to eduGAIN, via the AAF, potentially enables access to the service for researchers globally. These researchers must have an affiliation with an institution that also subscribes to the eduGAIN metadata service. If an SP supports research and scholarship activities, it should assert the Research and Scholarly (R&S) entity category, which states the service’s attribute requirements to Identity Providers (IdP). The Service Provider retains control of the access authorisation decisions, managing access according to defined policies.

If your service would benefit from international access, this tutorial outlines the steps required to connect to eduGAIN.

What you’ll learn

  • The prerequisites (e.g. software, attributes, metadata) prior to connecting a service to eduGAIN

What you’ll need

  • Experience with integration work