Master data management (MDM), in terms of enterprise data stewardship is a combination of organization wide policies and tool for managing master/reference data that are shared and used by several applications, such that those shared data reflect a single source of truth. Since master data is a key asset, every enterprise leverage MDM in one way or another to link disparate systems. In terms of Microsoft Dynamics AX, following are the typical scenarios where managing master data becomes essential -

• In a global deployment consisting multiple instances of AX, sharing master data like customer, vendors and products between all instances.
• Sharing master/reference data across two or more legal entities.
• Synchronizing product, and pricing information that originates from master instance to other shared instances.
• Sharing data with systems that do not implement Microsoft Dynamics AX, like CRM, pricing engine etc…
 
Starting with Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 R3, we are happy to announce support for master data management feature. This builds on top of Data Import Export Framework (DIXF) that shipped in R2, and extends the concept of entities, transformation, and staging to enable configurable data synchronization capabilities. Some of the key capabilities supported with this release are
 
Capabilities
• Data synchronization across multiple instances of Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 R3, or across multiple legal entities (or partitions) within the single instance.
• Five of the most requested entities ships ready for MDM – Customers, Vendors, Employees, Party, and Product.
• Ability to extend existing DIXF entities or add new entities through customization
• Configure selective synchronization of record set or field set by adding import or export filters
• Support single/multi-master record management scenarios
• Ability to centrally detect conflicts automatically and resolve manually.

This just a quick introduction of upcoming foundation feature in Microsoft Dynamics AX, I intend to publish further details in our blog post, so stay tuned. Also I am doing a session at Convergence 2014, if you are attending please do stop by.