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Digital transformation is achieved through heavily relying on information technology. It is becoming a global trend in all sectors and businesses. Education is a critical sector for the sustainable development and it has a great potential to achieve valuable and strategic outcomes by adopting technology and digital transformation strategies. Trends in this direction include smart schools, smart universities, and smart education in general. In response to these global trends and as part of its role as a catalyst for the technology in Egypt and as a software house for many standards and industry best practices, SECC launched an initiative for smart universities in Egypt. The initiative aims at defining a standard reference architecture for smart universities in Egypt under the name of Smart Universities Reference Architecture (SURA). SURA is typical example for enterprise architecture reference models applied to the universities business. It covers the four enterprise architecture (EA) domains: business, data, applications and technology within a university specific architecture. The reference architecture is evolvable and is targeted to be continually updated to cope with recent and up-to-date advances in technology and educational standards and best practices.

SECC officially released the first version of SURA in January 2019. SURA is designed to represent the roadmap for the realization of digital transformation in universities to boost their capabilities and services. The model focuses on 6 main pillars: Smart Learning, Smart Assessment, Smart Classroom, Smart Support, Smart Operations, and Smart Campus. With a total of 38 capabilities, SURA represents a practical framework for transforming the different aspects of a smart university. SURA is the realization of a blend of various best practice frameworks and models including TOGAF enterprise architecture framework, COBIT®, ITIL®, and IT4IT framework.

The 6 main pillars of SURA are as follows:
  1. Smart Learning: concerned with the management and delivery of learning content and resources to students.
  2. Smart Assessment: concerned with the tracking of students' performance and providing educators and assessors with a continuous flow of indicators and diagnosis of students' progress.
  3. Smart Classroom: concerned with establishing technology enabled classrooms.
  4. Smart Support: concerned with students and staff support.
  5. Smart Operations: addresses all aspects of daily operations in an educational institute.
  6. Smart Campus: concerned with the physical infrastructure of the university, its buildings and utilities, greenness, and safety.

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