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Publication Date

Manuscript Submission Deadline

Special Issue

Call for Papers

The introduction to virtualized networks was motivated by the explosive growth of mobile devices and service innovation. Virtual networks are destined to play a vital role when it comes to the service agility and elasticity of 5G networks incorporating Internet of Things (IoT) devices. It has been predicted by analysts that by the end of 2021, there will be more than 22 billion IoT devices. Hence, the management and connection of those devices through manual means seems impractical. Zero Touch Networks fully utilize virtualization functionality by transitioning from hardware platforms to off-the-shelf software-based solutions. The purpose of Zero Touch Networks is to provide a wide range of autonomous Information and Communications Technology (ICT) services, infrastructure and capabilities with zero touch based on fully integrated Self-X life cycle operations (self-serving, self-fulfilling, self-assuring) to automatically meet and respond to customer demands and resources available.

Over the last few years, business and social practices digitized with the evolution of new enabling technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), Deep Learning (DL), Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT), 6G, etc. The ad-hoc emergence of disruptive technologies, whether networking and virtualization of network functions identified in the field of software, or increasing demands for decoupled Information Technology (IT) functionality, such as cloud computing and storage, or major new network technologies, such as 6G, helps ICT users to not only evolve their companies, but also to create new ones. In fact, 6G and zero touch networks are quite related when it comes to the end goals. For instance, both types of networks heavily rely on AI technology for developing autonomous, cost effective, and efficient systems while reducing human intervention. This evolution is driven by the motivation that end-users are rapidly driving the demands imposed on networks. Whichever type of customer is considered, everyone requires a fusion of a fast and context-aware network and service configuration, flexible new service generation, and dynamic and efficient resource allocation.

The use of zero touch networks implicitly provides the security for network management systems. However, most recent security threats are associated with the increasing number of IoT devices, cloud-based and mobile-based services. Therefore, zero touch network services need to be safeguarded by additional security measures to not only secure the network but also preserve data privacy and integrity. Another key enabling technology, i.e. DLT, when integrated, can provide a level of security that is needed for the realization of zero touch networks.

In order to offer seamless automated end-to-end services, existing networks are made up of a diverse series of heterogeneous devices that need to be integrated. Until very recently the planning, implementation and management of this mix of services has been a largely manual activity with some automated assistance. In short, no matter the degree of refinement, it is recognized that these services can no longer be managed using such approaches. The fresh demands need a transformation supported by the integration of new technologies, such as virtualization, 6G, Blockchain, AI/ML/DL, etc., to attain a new level of automation and intelligence to efficiently manage the networks.

This Special Issue is targeted at the above issues related to Zero Touch Networks: QoS Provision and Resource Management. Authors are invited to submit previously unpublished papers to this Special Issue. Topics include, but are not limited to:

  • ML/DL for Zero Touch Networks
  • SDN/Network Slicing for Zero Touch Networks
  • Blockchain for Zero Touch Networks
  • Edge Computing for Zero Touch Networks
  • Big Data Analytics for Zero Touch Networks
  • Federated Learning for Zero Touch Networks
  • IoT for Zero Touch Networks
  • Dynamic Resource Allocation Techniques
  • Quantum Computing for Zero Touch Networks
  • Decentralized AI for Zero Touch Networks
  • Zero Touch Network architectures and protocol designs
  • Quality of Service (QoS) issues such as Dynamic Resource Allocation, Spectrum Allocation, Energy Efficiency
  • Enabling trust for Zero Touch Networks
  • Futuristic paradigms for advanced use cases; adopting blockchain, quantum communication, etc
  • Parameters such as Interoperability, heterogeneity, and bandwidth in congested networks
  • Optimization techniques (e.g. Harris Hawk) for Zero Touch Networks
  • Intrusion detection for Zero Touch Networks
  • Network Service Monitoring for Zero Touch Networks
  • Privacy issues of Zero Touch Networks
  • Network slicing for Zero Touch Networks
  • Network as a Service (NaaS) based autonomous networks
  • Intent-based Networking

Submission Guidelines

Manuscripts should conform to the standard format as indicated in the ‘Information for Authors’ section of the Paper Submission Guidelines. All manuscripts to be considered for publication must be submitted by the deadline through Manuscript Central. Select ‘July 2022/Zero Touch Networks’ from the drop-down menu of topic titles.

Important Dates

Manuscript Submission Deadline: 15 January 2022
Initial Decision Notification: 28 February 2022
Revised Manuscript Due: 31 March 2022
Final Decision Notification: 30 April 2022
Final Manuscript Due: 15 May 2022
Publication Date: July 2022

Guest Editors

Dr. Kapal Dev
Munster Technological University, Ireland

Dr. Madhusanka Liyanage
University of Oulu, Finland

Dr. Silke Holtmanns
AdaptiveMobile SecurityTM, Ireland

Prof. Kim-Kwang Raymond Choo
The University of Texas at San Antonio, USA

Prof. Aruna Seneviratne
University of New South Wales, Australia

Dr. Yue Wang
Samsung Electronics, UK

Prof. Thanh van Do
Telenor & Oslo Metropolitan University, Norway