Speaker Spotlight Column: Mike Grosvenor on Metadata and Data Models

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edw2013-speaker-spotlightby Charles Roe

DATAVERSITY™ recently interviewed Mike Grosvenor, the Technology Manager at Access Sciences. Mike will be giving a session at the Enterprise Data World 2014 Conference in Austin, Texas from April 27 – May 1, 2014. His session is titled “Bringing Together Data Models and Document Metadata for Better Solution Design.”

The Speaker Spotlight Column (and its parallel venture the Sponsor Spotlight Column) is an ongoing project that focuses on highlighting several of the central issues represented at the many Data Management conferences produced by DATAVERSITY.

The primary emphasis of the interview was to question Mike Grosvenor on his work and history within the industry, with particular importance on his presentation at the upcoming conference:

DATAVERSITY (DV): What are you going to discuss during your session at EDW14, and what will the audience gain from attending your talk? (Please be specific about one or two issues you’ll be addressing and the benefits the audience will obtain).

Mike Grosvenor (MG): I would like to help people understand that a complete data model should consider both structured and unstructured information. My goal is to show how this can be accomplished by combining the two sets of metadata.

DV: What is really important about such a topic in terms of the current state of Data Management and / or how the industry going to transform moving into the future?

MG: Organizations embracing the role of a Data Steward as a critical link between IT and the knowledge workers who depend on good, timely data will improve understanding of their core processes (and opportunities) when they develop complete, consistent metadata models that illustrate not just what is done, but how and by whom.

DV: Please tell us a little about yourself and your history in the industry, past work experience, and how you got started in the data profession?

MG: I started in the data profession when the Telecom and Database functions were assigned to the Facilities group I managed for an office machine distributor (because Accounting didn’t want them anymore). Most of the moves I made into different disciplines after that started with changes in regulatory compliance or because some other cross-functional activity needed an owner. I’m good at lists and labels, but mostly I just like to make sure people have what they need to do their jobs well.

DV: What is the biggest challenge happening in your particular area of Data Management at this time?

MG: The rate at which data and electronic content is created keeps accelerating, making it harder (and more important) to organize logically.

DV: How is such a change influencing your job?

MG: I am less focused on tools than ever before. My clients are learning that software won’t solve their problem if they can’t explain it.

DV: How have your job, and / or the work you are doing at your organization, altered in the past 12 months? How do you expect it will change in the next 1-2 years?

MG: I have moved from Metadata Governance for database projects to Metadata Governance for content management. I expect the next 2 years will see those two things becoming ever more closely aligned.

DV: Are there any other emerging technologies you predict will affect your job function in the future?

MG: Text analytics.

DV: What’s your favorite “Data” or “Data Management” quote?

MG: “The effectiveness of a system for accessing information is a direct function of the intelligence put into organizing it.”  Elaine Svenonius, The Intellectual Foundation of Information Organization [Sounds better than “Garbage in, garbage out.” – MG]

DV: How do you explain what you do for work, at a cocktail party, or to your grandparents?

MG: I explain that I try to make it easier for the business and technology teams to work together. Sometimes it’s easier just to tell people that I work in Risk Management or Process Improvement.


If you are interested in attending Mike’s session at EDW2014, please see the conference schedule at:

His session is on Tuesday, April 29th at 7.30am.

About Enterprise Data World:
Enterprise Data World is the business world’s most comprehensive educational event about data and information management. Over five days, EDW presents a diverse schedule of programming that addresses every level of proficiency, including keynotes, workshops, tutorials, case studies, and discussions.

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