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Table of contents

Recently a new data modeling methodology has emerged as a strong contender. The Data Vault! The Data Vault model resolves many competing Inmon and Kimball arguments, incorporating historical lineage of data, and offering a highly adaptable, auditable, and expandable paradigm.

So here we are …. Get hands-on data modeling experience. As requirements evolve, the schema a Data Model must follow along — or even lead the way; regardless, it needs to be managed. Of the many Data Models that I have designed, clear precepts have emerged which include:. These design precepts incorporate the essence of any chosen modeling methodology, some in contradiction with others. In my experience regardless of these dichotomies, a data model has just three stages of life — cradle to grave:. Designing the Data Model can be a labor of love entailing both the tedious attention to detail tempered with the creative abstraction of ambiguity.

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Personally drawn to challenging schemas, I look for cracks and crevices to correct, which often present themselves in various ways. For example:. Let us consider then a database design best practice: The design and release process of a data model. I believe that when crafting a data model one should follow a prescribed process similar to this:. Self-explanatory to most perhaps, yet let me emphasize the importance of adopting this process.

While schema changes are inevitable, getting a solid data model early in any software development project is essential. Undoubtedly minimizing the impact to application code is desirable for delivering successful software projects. Schema changes can be an expensive proposition so understanding the database life cycle and its role becomes very important. Versioning your database model is critical.

Use graphical diagrams to illustrate the designs. Understanding the history of the Data Model and the best process under which to design them is only the starting point. So let us consider that next. I believe we should understand as early as possible the full extent of what and where data is, how it is affected by, or affects the applications and systems using it, and why it is there in the first place. Getting your head around who needs what and how to deliver it is the challenge.

Mapping it out to ensure a solid Data Model is the goal.

  • References:.
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  • Choosing the right data modeling methodology is paramount. We do this ostensibly to deliver value to the business. Why then do we need a Data Model? What purpose does it serve? From a technical perspective, we rely on the data model to provide a structure upon which we manipulate data flow.

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    The life cycle of a Data Model directly impacts job design, performance, and scalability. And this is just the tip of the iceberg, technically. The business perspective is perhaps more abstract. Foremost the Data Model validates the business requirements. I submit that the business becomes wholly inefficient without a Data Model. Effective policies and interventions must take into account the connections between vulnerability and protective processes.


    Although the framework in the Blum et al. To take advantage of the strengths of the framework, he suggested using it to identify protective factors, relationships, and processes that seem particularly effective and enabling appropriate social institutions e. Because the model demonstrates interaction of risk and protective factors in several areas, it could promote collaboration among educational, social service, and health agencies to reduce adolescent vulnerability and risk. Kolbe identified future research opportunities, including articulating and measuring protective factors and monitoring them over time; and conducting longitudinal-cohort community-based studies, such as Healthy Passages, 1 of how variables evolve over time as well as intervention research determining whether these variables can be modified.

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    • Kolbe noted both the difficulty and the importance of such synthetic research. According to discussant Beatrix Hamburg, the model presented by Blum et al. What happens within a context e.


      Among macrolevel variables, chronic disease is of special concern for the adolescent Hamburg, A large and growing number of adolescents live with diseases such as cystic fibrosis, diabetes, asthma, and some cancers, all of which were once fatal at an early age. Now, due to medical advances, adolescents can live a long time with a disorder that can be treated but not cured. A disease and its treatment impose risks related to the developmental tasks of adolescence, such as establishing a positive body and self-image as well as peer acceptance, among other tasks. The specter of being permanently afflicted with damage and disability confers a substantial risk.

      As adolescents attempt to negotiate normative developmental tasks as well as demanding medical regimens, the risks imposed by chronic disease can lead to adverse outcomes in medical, emotional, social, and educational spheres. Parents often have little understanding or guidance in coping with these issues, and, at best, tend to become over-protective and anxious. Family conflict is common. For these reasons, adolescence is an especially vulnerable period for those with chronic illness. The Blum et al. Burt, Janine M. Zweig, and John Roman, emphasizes that adolescents establish behavior patterns and activities such as smoking and sexual activity that affect their lifetime well-being.

      However, these long-term consequences can be ignored, leading to insufficient investment in adolescents, whose short-term morbidity and mortality are relatively low. Traditional methods for estimating costs of health risks and outcomes do not provide good assessments of all the costs and benefits—social, economic, and human. The paper presents models for estimating the full suite of economic payoffs for different types of policy actions.

      The models consider programs that involve interactions between youth and teachers, program staff, families, and others. They show how existing and new databases can be used to analyze associations between patterns of behavior and patterns of outcomes. The sectoral costs of these outcomes can then be quantified, along with opportunities to reduce those costs through interventions with different probabilities of success.

      Research applying these models more comprehensively should lead to better understanding of the public and private costs and benefits of different patterns of youth risk behaviors and of investments in youth. These analyses make it less likely that population-based actions focusing only on a single issue e. In addition to identifying the best investments in adolescent development, such analyses also can show the overall payoff to policy changes focused on the well-being of young people. The discussants for this paper, Susan Curnan and Peter Edelman, noted its usefulness as a framework that researchers could build, expand, and adapt in revitalizing thinking about costs and benefits related to adolescent vulnerability and resiliency.

      Rather than focusing on adolescents as the source of troubling behaviors that drain social and institutional resources, the Burt et al. Curnan described a recent concrete example of such a policy, the pending bill, Younger Americans Act H. If the act were implemented, the Burt et al. Edelman pointed out that the Burt et al. It is thought to have potential for measuring the payoff of supporting positive youth development and improving the way we deal with adolescent vulnerability. Adolescent Vulnerability: Measurement and Priority Setting, by Baruch Fischhoff and Henry Willis, begins by discussing adolescents' legitimate concerns about their future and well-being, reflecting their concerns about their own invulnerability.

      They then consider how dealing effectively with adolescent vulnerabilities requires knowing their total burden as well as the size of the component parts. The former should shape the overall investment in reducing adolescent vulnerability, the latter its allocation across interventions. Priority setting for research and practice is discussed, including the important considerations of separating facts and values when making decisions about policies and actions. The paper presents approaches to determining priorities as well as ways to determine values relevant to the particular policy choices.

      Although the paper argues for setting priorities systematically, it also recognizes the challenges to this approach, such as the difficulty of the choices being faced and the political barriers to translating priorities into change in resource allocation. The proposed procedure for priority setting allows for involvement of relevant individuals, including adolescents, and not merely summaries of their views.

      The authors emphasize that values shape the priorities we place on young people's well-being and the procedures used to reach those priorities.

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      The main strength of the Fischhoff and Willis paper, according to discussants Matthew Stagner and Mark Cohen, is making transparent the assumptions, values, and uncertainties that are part of any process of risk assessment and prioritization. The paper draws attention to the multiple ways in which politics and value judgments are interwoven in the process of identifying, measuring, and creating intervention programs to address adolescent risk.

      In many cases, such as deciding what to measure in longitudinal studies, value judgments are the determining influence on how and where money will be spent.

      If choices are framed and evaluated in a scientific manner, the result should be priorities more in keeping with societal values. The Fischhoff and Willis paper offers a new way of examining how value judgments and scientific knowledge influence decision making about resources used to address adolescent vulnerability and risk. If a scientific knowledge base is available when opportunities such as public and political interest move in the direction of adolescent vulnerability, the possibility of having value judgments informed effectively by research is greater than if the research base is not present, according to Stagner.

      He also noted, in agreement with the other papers, the importance of developing indicators of positive development, pointing to the Federal Interagency Forum on Child and Family Statistics' America's Children initiative. Stagner also noted agreement with the other papers regarding creating community-specific priorities, reflecting the specificity of risks and values.

      The Fischhoff and Willis paper offers a way in which national and local resources might be addressed effectively to reduce adolescent vulnerability. Mark Cohen noted the social and institutional challenges facing attempts to develop community consensus regarding which adolescent risk and evaluative factors to consider.

      Questions include who controls the agenda, how to select appropriate citizen participants, and how values will be combined in cases of conflict. In contrast, Cohen noted the economic approach of quantifying monetary value of those risks that can be compared across categories Cohen, Doing so in an acceptable way could reduce the set of factors that need to be evaluated with alternative procedures capable of addressing nonmonetary concerns.

      The prepared papers and ensuing discussion considered what is known, believed, and desired regarding adolescents' welfare. These realities shaped proposals for better research, communication, and action. The following themes emerged from the papers and discussions. Recognizing the differences among young people is essential to affording them the respect they deserve. Sweeping generalizations about adolescents encourage the adoption of undifferentiated interventions, with the direct costs of wasting societal resources and undermining teenagers' confidence in adults who are ignoring significant aspects of their lives and the opportunity costs of failing to develop better understanding and interventions.

      Some adolescents face particular challenges worthy of special societal attention. These include adolescents suffering from chronic diseases, belonging to disadvantaged and disenfranchised groups e. Even within difficult situations, adolescents often find strengths in themselves and sympathetic others.

      Even adolescents from favored groups often experience extreme stresses e. As a result, helping them may be a matter of tipping the balance in their lives, rather than creating wholesale changes in their circumstances. Without solid research, priorities will be set on the basis of anecdote, supposition, and prejudice.

      One task of research is to evaluate beliefs that are widely maintained but empirically unsupported. It cannot, however, dissuade supporters of programs that are ends in themselves e. Disentangling the interplay of risk and resilience factors requires longitudinal studies with well-selected measures and diverse samples. Properly managed and coordinated, they can provide a uniquely valuable public resource. Effective research requires measures well matched to theoretical concepts. That applies when measuring adolescents' behavior, environmental circumstances, or beliefs, as well as beliefs about adolescents.

      For example, little can be concluded from many studies of risk perceptions because their questions are insufficiently precise for responses to be compared with statistical estimates of risk. Social policy and attitudes toward adolescents reflect people's beliefs about them. Often these beliefs are unfounded e. Such beliefs can be confronted in ways that improve public understanding of young people's vulnerability and resilience, as well as the processes shaping them. The workings of the research community can create an unbalanced picture of adolescents, even when its results are communicated accurately.

      Big Changes in the World of Data Modeling

      Teenagers often are studied because they face or pose problems in society. As a result, they can be unduly seen as threatened or threatening. Moreover, that research often is focused on a single problem behavior or risk factor, encouraging sweeping generalizations and simplistic solutions. Countering a fragmented view of adolescents requires either aggregating limited studies or focusing on comprehensive ones.

      Many different groups and individuals are concerned with adolescents' welfare. They include parents, teachers, legislators, funders, and the young people themselves. Taking best advantage of available research requires summarizing its results, implications, and robustness in terms relevant to specific audiences.

      Due diligence in communication means empirically evaluating its impacts in order to ensure that it is understood as intended. Sound analytical procedures are increasingly available to characterize many aspects of adolescent vulnerability. Applying these procedures more widely would provide disciplined estimates of statistics that people otherwise try to assess intuitively. Even the most accomplished economic or risk analysis provides an imperfect estimate of a portion of the issues potentially relevant to decisions about adolescents.

      Moreover, the specification of such analyses inevitably requires the exercise of judgment, regarding both how to treat uncertain data and how to focus on target issues and populations. As a result, formal analyses can inform, but not determine, social choices. Interpreting analytical results, and integrating them with other concerns, requires deliberative processes. These can create communities of concern and shared understandings including focused disagreements among those concerned about adolescents. As a society and as individuals, we face challenges and opportunities in providing a better future for our adolescents.

      The papers and discussions of this workshop have, we hope, advanced our point of departure for the work that lies ahead in setting and acting on priorities. Turn recording back on.

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      National Center for Biotechnology Information , U. Search term. Elena O. Assessing the Burden of Adolescent Vulnerability Adolescents today face complex and changing environments in which many things can go right and wrong. Creating a New Research Base In response to the need for new research, the Board on Children, Youth, and Families formed an ad hoc planning committee to develop papers in conjunction with a workshop that would stimulate new thinking about adolescent risk and vulnerability.

      A Comprehensive Approach Is Needed Looking at the full range of potential risk outcomes is essential to: Assess the full burden of vulnerability borne by youth and society in terms of both direct suffering and lost potential ;. Ensure that disproportionate attention and resources are not devoted to a few of the many potentially relevant issues; and. Assess the total contribution of interventions that might ameliorate root causes of multiple problems e.

      Adolescents Differ in Their Needs, Wants, and Circumstances Recognizing the differences among young people is essential to affording them the respect they deserve. Careful Research Matters Without solid research, priorities will be set on the basis of anecdote, supposition, and prejudice. Research Must Be Communicated Effectively Social policy and attitudes toward adolescents reflect people's beliefs about them. Deliberative Social Mechanisms Are Needed to Set Priorities Sound analytical procedures are increasingly available to characterize many aspects of adolescent vulnerability.

      Adolescents' and adults' understanding of probability expressions. Journal of Adolescent Health 28 1 , Blum, R. American Journal of Public Health 90 12 , Burt, M. Reasons to invest in adolescents.