Section 305

Message from the New Haven Section Chair


I was strumming through ASQ’ s Quality Progress magazine and I came upon a great article called “Show Me the Pedigree”. The article defines data pedigree as, “documentation of the origins and history of a data set, including its technical meaning, background on the process that produced it, the original collection of samples, measurement processes used, and the subsequent handling of the data, including any modifications or deletions made, through the present.” It goes on setting up core elements to assure a proper data pedigree. These core element were cited in a chart they had below:
• What the data represent—that is, the underlying subject matter knowledge involved, including units of measurement.
• Description of the process that produced the data. Process understanding, perhaps obtained through a supplier, input, process, output, and customer; provides the context that enables you to draw actionable conclusions from data analyses.
• Description of how the samples that were measured were originally selected.
• The specific Measurement system evaluation is a traditional strength of the quality profession, and is critical in evaluating data pedigree.
• How and when this measurement system has been formally evaluated or calibrated. Tainted, unreliable or compromised measurement systems are, unfortunately, all too common.
• History of the data set for its chain of custody in terms of who has had access to the data and could have made modifications, including eliminating data points. Ideally, a gold standard of the original data set should be maintained.

Hope this bit of info has been helpful in your data quests…Bill Folsom, Chair, New Haven ASQ