ICT consolidation in 5G. The role of Software Networks

  • Thursday, 30 June, 11:00-12:30, room Aristotelis


Motivation and Background:

Software Networks, and in particular its current base technologies NFV and SDN, are expected to play a major role in the creation of flexible 5G networks that can adapt to the dynamic nature of mobile traffic, whilst supporting the existence of separated slices able to support the requirements of different vertical sectors, including to ability to control their own network slice. The panel will explore the challenges, benefits and business opportunities of software network techniques at all network segments, from their application in the Radio Access Network (RAN) to service datacentres, and including core networks and optical aspects. The panel will also address the technological challenges in relation to existing open source environments (the most notable being OpenStack) and the risk of technology monoculture versus the advantages of differentiation and the needs to depart from such environments to address radical solutions.



  1. Would 5G requirements suitable to be achieved without an extensive use of Software Networks?
  2. The term “network slice” has generalized as the main construct of the 5G network services. How would you characterize such slices?
  3. Which are the required evolution of Software Networks base technologies, SDN and NFV, to fulfil the 5G promise and, more specifically, become able to support slicing?
  4. What is your perspective about the big open-source macro-projects that seem to dominate Software Networks evolution? Are we risking a lack of implementation diversity and a lack of innovation momentum?
  5. How do you foresee the application of Software Networks affecting 5G architecture? How can be a detailed architecture be applied to an ever-changing landscape of applications defining the network services?



The panel is composed of (see CVs below):

  • Chair: Diego R. Lopez (Senior Technology Expert, Telefonica I+D, Spain)
  • Xavier Costa (Head of 5G Networks R&D, NEC Europe Labs, Germany)
  • Carlos Bernardos (Associate Professor, UC3M, Spain)
  • Georgios Gkellas (System Architect, Nokia, Greece)
  • Paul Veitch (Chief Network Researcher, BT, UK)



Presentations available!


Xavier Costa-Pérez is Head of 5G Networks R&D at NEC Laboratories Europe, where he manages several projects focused on 5G mobile core, backhaul/fronthaul and access networks. He is a 5GPPP Technology Board member and the Technical Manager of the 5G-Crosshaul project. His team contributes to NEC projects for products roadmap evolution as well as to European Commission R&D collaborative projects and has received several NEC R&D Awards for successful technology transfers. In addition, the 5G team contributes to related standardization bodies: 3GPP, ETSI NFV, ETSI MEC, BBF and IETF. Xavier has served on the Program Committees of several conferences (including IEEE Greencom, WCNC, and INFOCOM), published at top research venues and holds over 25 patents. He received both his M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in Telecommunications from the Polytechnic University of Catalonia (BarcelonaTech) and was the recipient of a national award for his Ph.D. thesis.



Dr. Carlos J. Bernardos received a Telecommunication Engineering degree in 2003, and a PhD in Telematics in 2006, both from the University Carlos III of Madrid, where he works as an Associate Professor. He is an active contributor to IETF, being co-author of more than 30 contributions, 6 standards (RFC 6276, RFC 7028, RFC 7148, RFC 7161, RFC7429 and RFC 7778), and co-chairs the IETF P2PSIP WG and the Internet AreaDirectorate. He has worked in several EU funded projects, being the technical manager of the FP7 MEDIEVAL project, the Deputy Project Coordinator of the FP7 iJOIN project, and currently the technical manager of the H2020 5GPPP 5GEx project. His research currently focuses on network virtualization and mobility management.





Dr. Georgios Gkellas received his MSc and PhD degrees in Nuclear and High Energy, Particle Physics from the University of Athens. Dr. Gkellas has more than 15 years of experience in the Telecom and IT areas at various roles as consultant, analyst, architect, account manager, business development, PLM. Dr. Gkellas is constantly following cutting edge technologies in his area of involvement like cloud computing/network function virtualization, software defined networking, cognition, 5G. In the recent years Dr. Gkellas focused on 5G, Service chaining, Evolved Packet Core, cloud oriented VNF architectures and Cloud Management and Orchestration.






Paul Veitch ( holds M.Eng. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow. He joined BT’s R&D labs at Martlesham Heath in 1996, and worked on various aspects of broadband transmission, multi¬-service platforms, and 3G mobile infrastructure design, before moving to Verizon Business (UUNET) in 2000. Paul returned to BT in 2003, and was infrastructure design authority for IP VPN and BT Consumer networks before joining a small team of network innovation specialists in 2012. In his role as Chief Network Researcher, he leads on Network Function Virtualisation (NFV) proof-of-concept validation with a focus on business development and down-streaming. Paul is a member of the IEEE and has authored or co-authored more than 30 papers.