Community News

Life at GÉANT: Licia Florio and Helga Spitaler

GÉANT is a unique organisation that plays a pivotal role for research and education worldwide.

Life at GÉANT is an initiative launched to bring the community closer to the people inside the organisation and share what excites them about their working lives. CONNECT has chosen to feature GÉANT’s Licia Florio and Helga Spitaler’s employee stories to give you a flavour of this popular initiative and takes the opportunity to celebrate two relevant annual events: the International Day of Women and Girls in Science (11 February) and the International Women’s Day (8 March).

Licia Florio, Senior Trust & Identity Manager, Amsterdam

Tell us about your role at GÉANT
During my career at GÉANT I have been privileged to take part in a large number of initiatives that make up the current European and global Authentication and Authorisation Infrastructure for Research & Education. Specifically, I work in the area of Trust and Identity (T&I), to support the adoption of federated access in large scale international research collaborations operating in areas such as life science, earth observation, particle physics, astronomy and arts & humanities. We help users across multiple organisations and countries to access resources, collect research data and handle a variety of access issues specific to each field with one log in identity. Our work on federated access for such collaborations focuses on specific technical aspects, but also requires a certain degree of familiarity with the fields in which these operate, their constraints and how they interact.

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Helga Spitaler, Senior International Engagement Officer, Cambridge

What do you do at GÉANT?
As part of the International Relations team, for over 10 years I have been involved in adapting the GÉANT model to other parts of the world in the context of EU-funded regional networking projects. Specifically, I drive and coordinate the visibility efforts for these projects, including mentoring colleagues to build up PR capacity locally. I always want to understand the WHY that is behind what we do. I am therefore very keen to demonstrate our impact through the eyes of the actual network users, and in particular the less traditional ones who have a huge societal benefit potential. And I am proud to be involved in the ‘In The Field’ blog project, which depicts such a powerful picture of the difference NRENs make around the world.

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For more information about Life at GÉANT, visit

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