255 Reasons for Data Quality Diversity

255 is one source of truth about how many countries we have on this planet. Even with this modest list of reference data there are several sources of the truth. Another list may have 262 entries and a third list 240 entries.

As I have made a blog post some years ago called 55 reasons to improve data quality I think 255 fits nice in the title of this post.

The 55 reasons to improve data quality in the former post revolves around name and address uniqueness. In the quest for having uniqueness, and fulfilling other data quality dimensions as completeness and timeliness, a have often advocated for using deep (or big) reference data sources as address directories, business directories and consumer/citizen directories.

Doing so in the best of breed way involves dealing with a huge number of reference data sources. Services claimed to have worldwide coverage often falls a bit short compared to local services using local reference sources.

For example when I lived in Denmark, at tiny place in one corner of the world, I was often amazed how address correction services from abroad only had (sometimes outdated) street level coverage, while local reference data sources provides building number and even suite level validation.

Another example was discussed in the post The Art in Data Matching where the multi-lingual capacities needed to do well in Belgium was stressed in the comments.

Every country has its own special requirement for getting name and address data quality right, the data quality dimensions for reference data are different and governments has found 255 (or so) different solutions to balancing privacy and administrative effectiveness.

Right now I’m working on internationalization and internationalisation of a data and software service called instant Data Quality. This service makes big reference data from all over the world available in a single mashup. For that we need at least 255 partners.

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5 thoughts on “255 Reasons for Data Quality Diversity

  1. Smith 21st May 2012 / 09:41

    Great post! I was looking out for data quality solutions to improve my business intelligence, customer insights and master data. But this can help me a lot, thought I’d share.

    • Henrik Liliendahl Sørensen 21st May 2012 / 10:43

      Thanks Smith for making this Experian QAS ad on my blog. To where do I send the invoice?

    • Daragh O Brien 21st May 2012 / 11:05

      LInkbait comment trolling sales pitches are WORSE than “selling-under-guise-of-sharing” presentations at conferences. I have handed back sponsorship money in the past to vendors who did that. In public. At the conference. To a round of applause from delegates.

      On my personal blog I tag comments like yours as spam and I then decline to recommend the associated solution provider to my clients.

      Smith – if you are representing experian, just say it. If you want to buy an advertising slot on Henrik’s personal blog I’m sure he’d be happy to accomodate you. But this link trolling and SEO nonsense is lazy marketing and adds no value to the discussion.

      Experian – I trust that Smith was acting outside the remit of your social media marketing policies. If not, you’re engaging in dubiously ethical practices to drive links to your site from relevant seeds. Comments that add value are fine. Comments that link the commenters name back to your site are fine (and have the same effect). If Smith is not acting on your behalf, please let Henrik know so he can take the dubious comment down.

  2. Experian QAS 21st May 2012 / 18:29

    Henrik and Daragh,
    Thank you for highlighting this. We do focus on SEO internally as well as with an agency. However, this activity is certainly not in line with our social media marketing practices and is something we will be investigating immediately.

    • Henrik Liliendahl Sørensen 25th May 2012 / 16:16

      Thanks QAS and thanks for the follow up outside the blog.

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