The Microsoft Enterprise Consortium is a joint program between the Department of Information Systems in the Sam M. Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville (Walton College) and Microsoft Corporation (MS) and is aimed at providing  access to large and compelling real world datasets for both teaching and research to support business intelligence, data mining, database instruction, and data warehousing.

The initial large live datasets include –

  • Sam’s Club Sales Transactions Database with 6 tables and more than 55 million rows.
  • Dillard’s Department Store Sales Database with 5 tables and more than 128 million rows.
  • COPA Frozen Foods, Inc. Financials with 6 dimension tables linked to a fact table containing almost 12 million rows.

Walton College manages and operates the infrastructure that supports the database storage and maintains and manages the server and datasets within the college. The current configuration of this data mining/data warehousing server contains multiple months of Point of Sale (POS) transactions from Sam’s Club stores and Dillard’s department stores.

How is the Academic community using it?

Student and classroom access to datasets of this type and size for instructional purposes, business intelligence, data mining, and data warehousing is unprecedented. This unprecedented data resource is available as a result of ongoing relationships with the companies providing these large live datasets.

Members of the Microsoft Enterprise Consortium are encouraged to contribute course modules that can be used in university courses and by Microsoft Enterprise Consortium members as a cornerstone of the integration of database, data mining, data modeling, business intelligence, and ERP in their curriculum.

The University of Arkansas is developing the following course modules –

  • VB.NET 2005
  • Database Management using SQL
  • Business Warehouse/Business Intelligence (Data Mining)
  • Systems Analysis and Design (Project Management)

You can get more information about Microsoft Enterprise Consortium site at http://www.Microsoft4Me.com/faculty/EnterpriseData.