Analyzing the Current Trends in Enterprise Architecture Frameworks

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Analyzing the Current Trends in Enterprise Architecture FrameworksBrian H. Cameron and Eric McMillanAbstractEnterprise Architecture (EA) is gaining additional visibility and importance, and it is attaining higher levels of influence within many organizations today (Brownet al. 2010). As the importance and stature of EA grows, so too does the number of frameworks proposed to support the work of EA. This proliferation has led to an increasing challenge within organizations to develop a process for selecting the correct framework that best fits their unique needs, culture, and goals. Traditionally, EA frameworks have been used to facilitate alignment (Kaplan & Norton 2006) between the strategic goals and direction of the organization and the IT that supports the business units within the organization. This alignment process is a critical component to support the continued growth and success of a firm (Cuenca et al. 2010; Pombinho et al. 2012; Singh & Woo 2009). Despite several research studies that focused on a direct comparison of EA frameworks (Alghamdi 2009; McCarthy 2006; Tang et al. 2004; Urbaczewski & Mrdalj 2006a), there have been few studies aimed at capturing the information needed to support organizations in their decision-making process when selecting an EA framework (Armour et al. 1999). Also, as the usage of frameworks continues to mature within organizations, there has been little research conducted that documents the trends of both the usage and maturity of using frameworks within organizations. This research compares the attributes of various EA frameworks and provides a method to assist organizations in their efforts to choose an EA framework for their organization. The basis of this research is a survey that contains the responses from 276 participants whose job roles and responsibilities directly reflected working in EA within their organizations. This research was conducted in collaboration with leading EA industry associations, and the survey results provide a view of the current landscape of EA framework usage by a wide range of respondents worldwide and throughout many different organizations. The aim is that the inferences drawn from this survey will help support recommendations on a process that can be used to assist with the selection of an EA framework by organizations.


Enterprise Architecture Framework, Survey, Hybrid Approach


The authors of this article would like to thank the industry associations that supported this research: The Open Group, the Association of Enterprise Architects (AEA), the Association for Enterprise Integration (AFEI), the Industry Advisory Council (IAC) – Enterprise Architecture Shared Interest Group (SIG), the Object Management Group (OMG), the National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO), and Gartner.

About the authors

Brian H. Cameron PhD is Executive Director of the Center for Enterprise Architecture at the Pennsylvania State University.

Eric McMillan is a PhD student at the Pennsylvania State University.


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Journal of Enterprise Architecture