Dave Kearns writes a great column. This one had all the promise of an even greater column than usual, based on that enticing headline. The intersection between IdM and partisan politics? George W. Bush’s position on SAML? Does Bush or anybody else in
Nope. Just a discussion of the organizational politics that accompanies a federated IdM, in terms of who controls which authoritative repositories of information under which circumstances. Turf wars. Politics in the usual coalition trench warfare of business life.
Nevertheless. This particular column has a critical IdM insight which, though not mind-blowingly original, put me in mind of something else. Says
IdM is MDM in the governance of identity data (and, usually, employee data, to enable authentication, authorization, etc.). MDM comes in many varieties, based on the sorts of master reference data that’s being controlled. Customer data integration (CDI) is one type of MDM. Product information management (PIM) is another. Supplier information management is yet another.
In the world of MDM, there’s the distinction between “physical MDM” (i.e., a “data warehouse” (DW) a single master governance repository of some data set) vs. “virtual MDM” (i.e., enterprise information integration (EII) based on distributed repositories of master reference data and the need for federated governance/query/update across them).
That’s exactly equivalent to the IdM distinction between master directories (i.e., identity warehouses) and multimaster directories (i.e., identity federations).
To sum up: Identity isn’t just data. It’s master reference data. Control over that data, in an identity MDM environment, is inevitably political. In federated MDM, all the ownership turf wars apply full force.
Just wanted to point that out.