Following the announcement of its plans to establish an online semantics repository in May last year, the EDM Council has finally released the first draft of the repository for industry evaluation. The online conceptual data model and data dictionary is aimed at providing an open resource for collaboration among industry participants and tackling the problem of ambiguity within data terms used in the financial markets.
The semantics repository describes the facts about content stored in the various master files of financial institutions and is being managed by the not for profit industry organisation. According to the EDM Council, the objective of this review phase is to allow industry experts to validate the repository’s conceptual model and attribute definitions with regards to both logical structure and precision of meaning.
Michael Atkin, managing director of the EDM Council, explains the driver behind its establishment: “Data precision drives every trade, client interaction and business process, yet we still grapple with common terms that have different meaning, common meaning that use different terms and vague definitions that don’t capture critical differences. This is out of place in our interdependent industry and results in excessive mapping and unnecessary manual reconciliation.”
It is therefore hoped that the repository will reduce costs and promote confidence in data among users. Atkin reckons that if the data attributes in the financial industry were tagged at the point of creation, then it would reduce the requirement for data transformation and improve quality, accuracy and transparency. “As a result, source tagging will provide more effective supply chain management and more efficient business processing,” he says.
The semantics repository has been designed to be technology independent and focus on the business meaning of data attributes, including how facts relate to one another. It covers the full spectrum of data including reference data, analytical information, real time and end of day pricing, and corporate actions for all financial instrument types and was built on contract to the EDM Council by Mike Bennett, a principal at London-based consultancy Hypercube.
The repository can be viewed at www.hypercube.co.uk/edmcouncil.