The science, management, and art of architecture

Check out Steve Gillmor in Enterprise Architect:

The role of enterprise architect is of equal parts science, management, and art. The science is akin to chemistry – combining ingredients to produce a controlled reaction. The management is about people – mixing minds, experience, and intuition in search of solutions. And the art? That’s the secret ingredient that separates the winners from the losers, the magic from illusion.

In music, it’s Miles Davis. In film, it’s Kubrick or Hitchcock. In baseball, it’s DiMaggio or Durocher. For each, the whole was greater than the sum of its parts. By turns seductive, aggressive, persuasive, and just plain lucky, they realized a vision that only seems obvious in hindsight.

But, that’s three things. Maybe that’s the key challenge in enterprise architecture: To make the three disciplines work together. Science and art can co-exist, we know, although that’s enough of a challenge in real life. But managment? Scientists and artists – the experts, the architects – hate managment. At best, management is a necessary evil, at worst, well, it’s much worse …

It never becomes very specific on this issue, but somehow I get the impression that IAC’s Advancing Enterprise Architecture Maturity got this point. Much more could be said and done on this issue, for certain.

In my collection of Enterprise Architecture links I found Gartner’s Build Your Next-Generation Enterprise Architecture, which had Gartner’s attempt at defining enterprise architecture:

… a definition of architecture is: the harnessing of grid, bricks, patterns and styles in service of an enterprise’s business strategy. A working architecture can no longer be a snapshot at a point in time. Effective use of enterprise architecture embraces the increasingly dynamic character of business and technical innovation by sustaining continuity while organizing innovation and the interconnected nature of system elements within an enterprise and in enterprise-to-enterprise interconnections.

That doesn’t help too much …

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