From project prioritisation performed during the Core IT Infrastructure Roadmap review, the need to provide apps to user devices was classified as priority 1 (from 8) by two of the three colleges, and from two of the three Support groups, from among the highest priority developments ITI were planning for 15/16. It rated in the top four for the others.

Therefore, ITI are taking the development of this functionality forward as a highest priority project in the current Desktop Programme of projects.

This project will have a particular focus on supporting the delivery of online and distance education.

This project will deiver a working pilot as a precursor to transitioning to a new service offering apps to user devices called Remote Lab Apps.





Understand and confirm the requirements for staff and students = the university's 'User Profile'. This will be done with the three colleges, with SCE schools explicitly engaged.

Undertake sufficient technical R&D to get to the point where a series of prioritised recommendations and options can be put to stakeholders and the project sponsor, so that the most cost-effective solutions can be determined such that the most benefit can be delivered soonest to the most staff and students, especially if there is insufficient capital budget to accommodate all solutions.

Procure hardware and consultancy to provide the technical underpinning to enable the solution to be put in place by the Desktop team.

Review of existing systems within the University that provide similar services with a view to leveraging either the lessons learned in their deployment or whether they might provide a platform for subsuming into this project.

Understand the essential applications needed to launch with to provide the new service as early as possible, and the prioritised list of other application that can be rolled out over time.

Ensure the chosen solutions provides appropriate flexibility to meet emerging/future needs.

Implement a technical solution that Pilots a new service so that the university can offer students the same applications available on on-campus desktops to students working remotely (including especially ODL) and using their own devices.

Not in Scope

Only College staff and students requirements are being addressed by this project.

Using this service for full Disaster Recovery for University Desktops, e.g. to handle loss of buildings for desk based workers.

A successor project will then implement the transition from Pilot  to Full Service.




To provide students with a common Application set regardless of location, encompassing the same software as currently exists in central labs.

To provide a solution to the university using the resources - people and capital - that the ITI Director and Desktop Section Head have committed to the project.






A mechanism to deliver Applications to staff and students working remotely, such that a Windows environment with the core set of Applications is provided that matches that as in the Labs. This account for 90% of the users. A mechanism to provide Applications to staff and students working remotely such that they can work off-line.

A full build of the appropriate service environments and an initial pilot service to early adopter groups.  A follow on project will take this pilot into full service.




Better student and staff experience when working withh own device, or from any location. An experience equivalent to using the Open Access Lab machines.


Success Criteria

A Pilot that can be assessed as workable and scaleable for Distance and Online education in the imemdiate and long term - a Pilot which can prove that a Full Service is possible.


Strategic Alignment  

This project will deliver benefits, change and innovations in alignment with the ISG Strategic Vision and the University's Strategic Vision for 2025 ISG Strategic Vision

Student experience

Student experience and the unique Edinburgh offer improved technical support for off-campus PG as well as on-campus
Online and distance learning leaders Main strategic alignment - improved technical support for off-campus
Library national and international leadership  

Research and innovation

Research IT and Data Sciences  
Innovation project will offer several options to students and staff for remote access
Collaborative leadership  and social responsibility  

Service excellence

Process improvement, efficiency, quality and best practice by providing an established standardised document (template and process) for refurbishments
Long‐term IS strategic planning and linked professional services by creating a basis for continued quality improvement
Information security by expicitly including security elements where appropriate in the new standard document

University's Strategic Vision for 2025


A unique Edinburgh offer for all of our students  
• all of our undergraduates developed as student/ researchers with clear, supported pathways through to Masters and PhD  
• all our students offered the opportunity to draw from deep expertise outside their core discipline  
• a highly satisfied student body with a strong sense of community.  
Strong and vibrant communities within and beyond the University – making the most of our unique offer of world-leading thinking and learning within one of the world’s most attractive cities  
A larger, more international,staff who feel valued and supported in a University that is a great and collegial place to work, develop and progress  
More postgraduate students – underpinned by the best support in the sector to ensure we attract the brightest and best regardless of ability to pay improved technical support for off-campus PG as well as on-campus
A more international student body – offering all our students an international learning experience; enabling us to make a truly global impact through educating the brightest and best from and across the world. improved technical support for off-campus PG as well as on-campus
A strong culture of philanthropic support focussed especially on our students and on outstanding research capabilities.  
Many more students benefiting from the Edinburgh experience (largely or entirely) in their own country – supported by deep international partnerships and world- leading online distance learning students able to work anywhere on any device with no loss of functionality
Sustained world leading reputation for the breadth, depth and interdisciplinarity of our research supported by strong growth in research funding and strong international partnerships – drawing from well-established and less well developed sources


An estate that matches expectations, responds flexibly to changing student and staff needs, and showcases the University

providing long term quality infrastructure to students on and off campus


A deeper and earlier collaboration with industry, the public sector and the third sector – in terms of research; knowledge exchange; and in giving our students the best possible set of skills for their future



IS Change Programme  

Indicate if theproject deliverables, benefits or the project itself (during plan, execution, implementation) contribute to the IS Change Programme.

IS Change Programme Theme How the project contributes to change or leverages change
Project Management the project is being run as a formal project using university's project methdology and project tools (Application Division) as part of the rollout of PM process in ITI
Working Together the project will require Desktop and College staff to work together throughout to identify student needs and deliver the most cost-effective solution
Standards and Technical Leadership  
Staff Learning and Development  
Service Based Culture providing a new service to ODL students and in general to students working off-campus
Equality and Diversity  
Flexible Resourcing  
Communication and Branding  








Project Info

Apps Ed
ITI - Desktop Services (DST)
Management Office
Project Manager
Gail Devaney
Project Sponsor
Anthony Weir
Current Stage
Project Classification
Start Date
Planning Date
Delivery Date
Close Date
Overall Priority