Reference Work Entry

Encyclopedia of Database Systems

pp 684-692

Data Warehousing Systems: Foundations and Architectures

  • Il-Yeol SongAffiliated withDrexel University


A data warehouse (DW) is an integrated repository of data for supporting decision-making applications of an enterprise. The most widely cited definition of a DW is from Inmon [3] who states that “a data warehouse is a subject-oriented, integrated, nonvolatile, and time-variant collection of data in support of management’s decisions.”

Historical Background

DW systems have evolved from the needs of decision-making based on integrated data, rather than an individual data source. DW systems address the two primary needs of enterprises: data integration and decision support environments. During the 1980s, relational database technologies became popular. Many organizations built their mission-critical database systems using the relational database technologies. This trend proliferated many independent relational database systems in an enterprise. For example, different business lines in an enterprise built separate database systems at different geograph ...

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