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A Design Theory Nexus for Situational Enterprise Architecture Management - Approach and Application Example


Today’s enterprises are confronted with an ever changing environment demanding continuous adaptation. A commonly accepted instrument to guide such transformations is enterprise architecture (EA) management. Enterprises seeking to introduce and establish such a management function see themselves confronted with a plethora of tools, approaches, and frameworks that claim to provide ’the definitive design prescriptions’ for an EA management function. The applicability of the different prescriptions nevertheless heavily depends on the organizational context in which such a management function has to be embedded and the EA-related goals that the enterprise wants to pursue. This paper presents a design theory nexus (DTN) for situational EA management, that helps enterprises to choose the EA management approach best suited for their specific situation. To build such a DTN, related work from the field of situational method engineering is revisited and prominent approaches to EA management are discussed. Utilizing the DTN an enterprise can specify its organizational context as well as its goals, and is provided with a selection of suitable approaches. The applicability of the approach is exemplified along the EA management pattern catalog of the TU Munich.