What is SDMX?

SDMX for data validation, metadata-driven governance & process codification

The Statistical Data and Metadata Exchange (SDMX) format is an International Organization for Standardization(ISO) standard that is widely adopted as a global standard for data exchange. SDMX is promoted by leading international data providers, including the Bank for International Settlements (BIS), the European Central Bank (ECB), Eurostat (Statistical Office of the European Union), International Monetary Fund (IMF), the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the United Nations Statistical Division (UNSD), and the World Bank.

An important and unique aspect of EconData is that it is built using the SDMX data model and is compatible with the SDMX standard for the exchange of statistical data and metadata. What makes SDMX powerful is that it is a single, metadata-rich reporting format designed to streamline and standardize the representation of each type of data. As a result, an SDMX approach integrates data from a variety of sources, facilitating seamless data-sharing both across databases and within institutions. SDMX offers simplified reporting taxonomies that not only enhance data management and governance but also embeds the documentation of the steps of data management process flows. This means best practice data governance and auditing capabilities come baked-in to the way databases and data pipelines are set up and managed. Not only does this enable seamless exchange and comprehension of data across diverse datasets, but it also creates a central data glossary describing the information necessary to access and interpret data and associated metadata for specific teams or across an institution.

The SDMX approach is sufficiently general that it enables extraction of data into various data formats. This means it becomes possible to make data available in machine-readable / programmatic forms that enable automation and other services can be built on to of other services. Data managers can define how data may be used and impose user-level access controls, consistent with any relevant data provision agreement(s). This promotes tool interoperability, enabling data users to access and analyze data through various means and utilize any available tools for analysis. In this way, SDMX not only facilitates data storage but also formalizes reporting processes and fulfills data sharing requirements.

The SDMX way attaches detailed metadata to data and formalizes processes for validating data. The SDMX information model therefore bakes in data governance, making it easy for data managers to monitor data availability and quality, maintain data dictionaries and enforce adherence to process protocols.

This enables automated reporting and data dissemination.

Codera’s EconData Econometric Data Service provides an open API and a package for R, as well as an excel plugin so users can access data on the web, in excel or programmatically. The EconData Registry provides a central data glossary of data concepts and the information necessary to access and interpret data and associated metadata.

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