Information silo

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An information silo is an insular management system incapable of reciprocal operation with other, related information systems.

Information silo occurs whenever a data system is incompatible or not integrated with other data systems. This incompatibility may occur in the technical architecture, in the application architecture, or in the data architecture of any data system. However, since it has been shown that established data modeling methods are the root cause of the data integration problem, most data systems are at least incompatible in the data architecture layer.


The term functional silo syndrome was coined in 1988 by Phil S. Ensor who worked in organizational development and employee relations for Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company, Eaton Corporation, and as a consultant. "Silo" and "stovepipe" are now used interchangeably and applied broadly. Phil Ensor's use of the term "silo" reflects his rural Illinois origins and the many grain silos he would pass on return visits as he contemplated the challenges of the modern organizations with which he worked.[1][2][3][4]

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  1. ^ Ensor, Phil (Spring 1988). "The Functional Silo Syndrome" (PDF). AME Target: 16. Retrieved 2013-10-19. 
  2. ^ AME Study Group on Functional Organization (Summer 1988). "Organizational Renewal – Tearing Down the Functional Silos" (PDF). AME Target: 4-16. Retrieved 2013-10-19. 
  3. ^ Pullin, James (Winter 1989). "Breaking Down the Functional Silos: Motorola Paging Division "Bandit" Plant" (PDF). AME Target. Retrieved 2013-10-19. 
  4. ^ "Of Silos and Stovepipes". Language Log. University of Pennsylvania. 2006-03-27. Retrieved 2013-10-19. 

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