Last updated: April 24, 2020

Enterprise Architecture Foundations are key building blocks of architectural thinking.  These foundations form the basis for much of the higher level guidance that EA provides.  They are more detailed than the Architecture Principles.  But, like the principles, they are applicable to wide variety of issues.  The foundations provide a set of lenses that you apply as you work through the desired future state for a variety of business and technical strategies.

Architectural Foundations:

Pace Layers Pace Layers are a Gartner concept.  Pace layers provide a framework for looking at different applications in the organization through the lens of the rate of change for those technologies.  Each layer in the Pace Layer model has different rates of change and different requirements.
Digital Transformation Digital Transformation is the wholesale change to all of our lives due to new digital technologies.  These technologies are impacting every aspect of business and life.  They are also changing the expectations of end-users and customers.
User-Centered Design & Design Thinking User-Centered Design and Design Thinking or design methodologies and styles.  The Stanford D.School has been at the forefront of this practice for many years.  These practices put the experience of the user at the core.  They work iteratively through prototypes and end-user testing to develop the best solution.
Service Oriented Architectures & Loosely Coupled Platforms Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) has been around for more than a decade.  At the core, SOA states that you need to decompose large monolithic applications into smaller data and business services (APIs, RESTful architectures, etc.) that can then be leverage by user-facing applications and other systems.
The blurring of technology and business – technology as a critical business transformation partner Technology and business used to be thought of as two parts of a whole organization.  Digital transformation, digitization of business processes and data, and the consumerization of technology now mean that business and technology are merged into a single whole experience.  Technology provides new opportunities and some constraints.  Business brings strategic opportunities for the use of technology.  The two are now completely intwined.
Data is our most important asset Every business is now a data business.  Every business process relies on data.  Every business decision requires timely well-defined and accurate data.