Success of a project, both short-term and long-term, ultimately comes down to business insight, strategy, sound linkage between the business goals and the technical objectives, and the tactical execution of the project. Given my deep understanding of information and database technology, I’m naturally biased towards business analysis, and data modeling as the foundation for a successful project. But don’t take my word for it. Larissa Moss of Method Focus and Steve Hoberman have written an excellent summary of the importance of data modeling as a foundation for business insight.
Alternate URL: The Importance of Data Modeling as a Foundation for Business Insight .
(Teradata non-working link:The Importance of Data Modeling as a Foundation for Business Insight.)
Another good read is Data Modeling in System Analsys by Shuang Gao. Alternate download: Data Modeling in System Analysis. If you are finding you need some additional points to justify upfront analysis for your agile or spiral approach, this might be a good starting point.