Defining Solution Architecture

21 November 2007

In his latest post, Karthik Vijayakumar looks at the definition of Solution Architecture, see  http://blog.karthikvijayakumar.com/2007/11/solution-architecture-how-is-this.html .

My view is that a Solution Architecture includes the same views and disciplines as Enterprise Architecture, but with a different and much smaller scope, different context and focuses on a different time period.

Enterprise Architecture is concerned with the enterprise as a whole at a group or corporate level. This is a broad and shallow view and covers all programmes, projects, solutions in the organisation. Enterprise Architecture is primarily modelling the future (target state) architecture vision for the organisation, over the next 3 – 5 years. In terms of the Zachman Framework, and Enterprise Architecture model will focus mainly on the top two rows of cells.

Solution Architecture is typically only concerned with a single business solution, within a single business domain, being developed or aquired by a single software development project. This is a narrow and deep view.  In terms of the Zachman Framework, a Solution Architecture model will focus mainly on the bottom three rows of cells. A Solution Architecture addresses the immediate current business needs of a particular business area or business function.

Once the development project is closed and the Solution has been delivered into the live production environment, the Solution Architecture model is harvested by the Enterprise Architects (who take ownership of it) and used to update the current state enterprise architecture models. In this way the Current State Enterprise Architecture models are kept up to date.

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2 Responses to “Defining Solution Architecture”

  1. Karthik Says:

    Adrian,

    Very well articulated. Thanks…

    - Karthik


  2. [...] Adrian Campbell built on Karthik’s post and spoke about how Enterprise Architects work in the top 2 rows of the Zachman Framework (broad and shallow) and the Solutions architects work in the bottom 3 rows (narrow and deep). [...]


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