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November 9, 2007

London FIMA Thoughts

I attended the FIMA conference in London this week. It is a conference for financial services firms and focused on master data management, mainly securities masters.

The two topics that came up over and over again during the two day marathon sessions were Data Governance and integration of the master to downstream systems. I will write bout the data governance issue today and leave the downstream integration for next time (my attempt at a cliff hanger as I am sure you are all just waiting with excitement to read the next installment ;) )

Data Governance: This has been a hot topic in the states for the past year with the start of the Data Governance conference but clearly people are realizing that you can’t just have the data management piece of a reference master without also have business people who will provide governance oversight to handle the exceptions.

Lots of discussion about where governance should sit. Is it an IT function or is it a business function. Outside of the financial services world, I think there is little debate about this, that governance and the data stewards sit on the business side as they have to make business decisions about the data. However at FIMA, there didn’t seem to be as much consensus on the topic. Perhaps it is because very often there is a lot of overlap and moving back and forth from business to IT and vice versa in financial institutions. In general, there is a lot more IT savy in financial institutions on the business side and the IT folks tend to take a lot of interest and have a lot of knowledge.

One consultant I spoke to commented that perhaps it is just that no one wants to step up to take “ownership” of the data. This is even more likely. Because “ownership” would imply responsibility and with Basel, MiFID, Sarbox etc. hanging over all these firms, no one at lower levels in the organization want to be responsible for the data because then they might implicitly be accountable in a legal sense.

As for the next topic, integrating with downstream systems, you will have to wait until tomorrow. Time for me to board the plane back to sunny California.

Posted by Todd Goldman at November 9, 2007 9:30 AM



I was wondering whether there were any accessible publications or reports that came out of the 2007 FIMA Data Management Conference.


Amar Athwal

Posted by: Amar Athwal at August 8, 2008 9:34 AM

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