A critical realist perspective of enterprise architecture evolution : preliminary findings

Alwadain, Ayed, Fielt, Erwin, Korthaus, Axel, & Rosemann, Michael (2013) A critical realist perspective of enterprise architecture evolution : preliminary findings. In Proceedings of the 24th Australasian Conference on Information Systems (ACIS 2013), Melbourne, Australia.


This paper investigates how Enterprise Architecture (EA) evolves due to emerging trends. It specifically explores how EA integrates the Service-oriented Architecture (SOA). Archer’s Morphogenetic theory is used as an analytical approach to distinguish the architectural conditions under which SOA is introduced, to study the relationships between these conditions and SOA introduction, and to reflect on EA evolution (elaborations) that then take place. The paper focuses on reasons for why EA evolution could take place, or not and what architectural changes could happen due to SOA integration. The research builds on sound theoretical foundations to discuss EA evolution in a field that often lacks a solid theoretical groundwork. Specifically, it proposes that critical realism, using the morphogenetic theory, can provide a useful theoretical foundation to study enterprise architecture (EA) evolution. The initial results of a literature review (a-priori model) were extended using explorative interviews. The findings of this study are threefold. First, there are five different levels of EA-SOA integration outcomes. Second, a mature EA, flexible and well-defined EA framework and comprehensive objectives of EA improve the integration outcomes. Third, the analytical separation using Archer’s theory is helpful in order to understand how these different integration outcomes are generated.

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ID Code: 65202
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Enterprise Architecture, EA, Service-oriented Architecture, SOA, Morphogenetic theory
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > INFORMATION AND COMPUTING SCIENCES (080000) > INFORMATION SYSTEMS (080600)
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Information Systems
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2013 Alwadain, Fielt, Korthaus and Rosemann
Copyright Statement: The authors assign to ACIS and educational and non-profit institutions a non-exclusive licence to use this document for personal use and in courses of instruction provided that the article is used in full and this copyright statement is reproduced. The authors also grant a non-exclusive licence to ACIS to publish this document in full in the Conference Papers and Proceedings. Those documents may be published on the World Wide Web, CD-ROM, in printed form, and on mirror sites on the World Wide Web. Any other usage is prohibited without the express permission of the authors.
Deposited On: 09 Dec 2013 00:10
Last Modified: 11 Dec 2013 04:39

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