ACG’s Domain Control and Orchestration research focuses on the emerging market for software systems for automated network provisioning and assurance.  We have named this new category Domain Control and Orchestration (DCO). DCO implementations are emerging as communications service providers (CSPs), systems integrators (SIs), network equipment manufacturers (NEMs) and independent software vendors (ISVs) work to implement autonomously controlled software-defined networks that provide elastic, flexible network infrastructures to support new types of connectivity and advanced digital services.

CSP networks are large and complex with multiple interworked technologies, requiring multiple skill sets and tools to manage them effectively. To manage and evolve these networks typically requires their deployment be divided into domains, often by technology (such as optical or IP/MPLS or carrier Ethernet), by service (such as SD-WAN or residential broadband), by geography, or along organizational boundaries. A tiered management structure has evolved that seeks to automate provisioning and assurance functionality within a domain (using domain controllers and applications) as well as across domains (using cross-domain functionality often called orchestration software). 

The need to refine and evolve these implementations is creating the new DCO category, replacing old EMS, NMS, and many OSS systems, and enhancing recently begun initiatives in SDN and NFV with many rapidly evolving vendor offerings.