Smart Networks and Services – Software Networks

The digitalisation era requires an intelligent Internet based on new architectures and services able to interconnect people, objects and environment in more efficient and dynamic ways. New systems and protocols are also needed to transform information into new knowledge by creating intelligent environments. Users shall be empowered to design, reconfigure and manage the networks based in their own interests and needs.

The Software Networks (SN) research area of i2CAT focuses on:

Exploring and defining new ways to provision and manage the internet networks of the future.

Enabling new functionalities and business models by means of integrating technologies such as networked Clouds, Software Defined Networking (SDN) and Network Function Virtualization.

Research Challenges

5G Network Architectures

5G technologies represent the next generation of communication standards able to provide ultra-high connection speeds, increased coverage, spectral efficiency, very low latency and to allow connectivity among billions of devices. This line aims to investigate novel SDN/NFV based networking solutions for providing 5G services in a versatile, fast and efficient way.


Software Defined Networking (SDN)

Network Function Virtualisation (NFV)

Recursive Internet Architectures

Network as a Service (NaaS)


Neutral Hosting

Multi-tenancy in Open Access Networks

Virtual network security

Dynamic network overlays

Mobility and multi-homing

Cloud Technologies

Cloud technologies are one of the main drivers of digital transformation, enabling distributed computing and storage with secure and robust connectivity. SN is actively innovating in cloud technologies by bringing automation to cloud and network services, while lowering the transformation barrier for SMEs and more traditional industries.


Cloud computing

Fog/Edge computing

Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)

OpenStack, Dockers and Micro-services


Cloud networking

Hybrid clouds

Deployment of complex cloud applications

Data integration and slicing

Edge services/Edge analytics

Some of our partners

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