Architecture domain

Architecture domain

An architecture domain is a broad view of an enterprise or system, one of the pillars of enterprise architecture or solution architecture. It is a partial representation of a whole system that addresses several concerns of several stakeholders. It is a description that hides other views or facets of the system described.

Typical architecture domains are summarised below, along the lines described in references 1 and 2.

Business architecture: The structure and behaviour of a business system (not necessarily related to computers). Covers business goals, business functions or capabilities, business processes and roles etc. Business functions and business processes are often mapped to the applications and data they need.

Data architecture: The data structures used by a business and/or its applications. Descriptions of data in storage and data in motion. Descriptions of data stores, data groups and data items. Mappings of those data artifacts to data qualities, applications, locations etc.

Applications architecture: The structure and behaviour of applications used in a business, focused on how they interact with each other and with users. Focused on the data consumed and produced by applications rather than their internal structure. In application portfolio management, the applications are usually mapped to business functions and to application platform technologies.

Application (or Component) architecture: The internal structure, the modularisation of software, within an application. This is software architecture at the lowest level of granularity, as in reference 3. It is usually below the level of modularisation that solution architects define. However, there is no rigid dividing line.

Technical architecture or infrastructure architecture: The structure and behaviour of the technology infrastructure. Covers the client and server nodes of the hardware configuration, the infrastructure applications that run on them, the infrastructure services they offer to applications, the protocols and networks that connect applications and nodes.


1. The "Open Reference Model for Enterprise and Solution Architects" used in the Avancier Method.

2. TOGAF (The Open Group Architecture Framework).

3. “Patterns of enterprise application architecture” by Martin Fowler.

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