A set of permissions.

In Oracle it is important to note that roles are disabled in PL/SQL run with definer rights. In PL/SQL permissions must be granted directly or invoker rights can be used in the block by adding the phraseAUTHID CURRENT_USER.

In SQL Server "All versions of SQL Server use role-based security, which allows you to assign permissions to a role, or group of users, instead of to individual users. Fixed server and fixed database roles have a fixed set of permissions assigned to them."

References:

Server and Database Roles in SQL Server

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