Metadata Management Foundation Capabilities Component
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Foundation Capabilities for Metadata Management are the basic capabilities required to model, integrate, store, distribute and publish metadata to support an Information Architecture. While Metadata Management is a core component that could stand alone, management of metadata crosses each foundation capability in the Information Architecture. Metadata Management foundation capabilities provide functions to other foundation components and upward to support metadata Enabling Technology services.
Model Management is the capability to manage structures and processes used to describe the metadata in a system. Organisations generate a vast quantity and breadth of metadata that is available for analysis and reuse. Not all metadata is valuable to capture and manage at any given time. Model management is the capability and discipline for describing the scope and depth of metadata in the form of a metadata model.
Metadata models are themselves an information asset that must be managed over time. The most effective metadata management systems are those that are flexible due to comprehensive model management capabilities. The core model management capabilities a metadata management system should aspire to have are:
Model management capabilities support an evolutionary metadata management system. The metadata needs of an organisation will most definitely change over time and the metadata management system must also provide the ability to adapt and change in step with the organisational needs.
A Metadata Integration capability provides a basic ability to build metadata flows into and out of a managed metadata environment. Metadata is produced and consumed by a variety of components in the Information Architecture. To achieve consistency, quality and reuse utility, metadata must be integrated between the sources of record for metadata. Metadata Integration provides the foundation for active metadata management in a model driven architecture.
Metadata Integration itself should be model driven by interfacing with Model Management capabilities in the architecture to provide a framework for repeatable development processes and reusable components to integrate metadata.
Data Lineage metadata traces the lifecycle of information between systems, including the operations that are performed upon the data. The need to establish a comprehensive view of Data Lineage has grown in importance over the past few years, particularly with renewed compliance requirements. The ability to trace lineage of data from producers to consumers will be an importance feature of the SAFE Architecture.
Identity Matching as a foundation capability is both a strategic and technical component of the metadata architecture. The need for Identity stems from the inherently distributed nature of metadata throughout the Information Architecture and the desire for metadata reuse utility. To ensure consistent and accurate reuse of metadata in a model driven architecture, a system must have the ability to identify metadata uniquely so that the metadata may be reused, validated and versioned within the managed metadata environment.
Validation capabilities ensure the quality and consistency of metadata flowing through the managed metadata environment. It is critical that metadata be reliable and complete when building a model driven architecture. Metadata validation needs to be user controlled so that fit for purpose rules can provide the right balance. Not all metadata need follow the same criteria. A too stringent validation rule may prevent any metadata entering the system, but a too loose rule may corrupt the system.
An understanding of metadata history is important metadata in itself. Versioning of metadata provides the ability for looking back into history to gain a more comprehensive understanding of the current state. Some level of metadata versioning is a foundation capability. The granularity of versions will depend on individual requirements of the organisation, but the system should provide the fundamental capability.
Like other information assets, metadata has its own development lifecycle. Configuration Management is a fundamental process for developing metadata. Central to the capability of metadata Configuration Management is the role that process and governance plays in the development and operations of a managed metadata environment. Metadata governance and control involves providing the technology tools and human procedures to ensure that the system runs smoothly and evolves in a controlled manner, but also provides the agility adapt and evolve.
Model Query provides the fundamental ability for publication of metadata and enables service oriented application development. Where metadata Integration capabilities provide low level programmatic capabilities for integrating sources of record for metadata, Model Query provides a higher-level access layer that abstracts the detail of access to metadata. Model Query capabilities form the foundation of providing Metadata Reporting Packages and is a component of providing content to Enabling Technologies in support of Metadata Services.
Metadata can often be sensitive information that should have restrictive controls to prevent unauthorised access. Metadata Access Control is a foundation capability that compliments Model Management capability by providing a control layer over metadata models. Access control is a foundation capability for building a model driven architecture. Access Control is integrated into the metadata access mechanisms though Model Query, Integration interfaces, Metadata Services and Reporting Packages.
Metadata Access Control is complimentary to Security foundation capability for Infrastructure in the overall Information Architecture. Metadata Access Control supplements the limitations of some security systems to provide control over metadata attributes and relationships.
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