Architectural Improvement by use of Strategic Level Domain-Driven Design

by

Einar Landre, Statoil ASA
Harald Wesenberg, Statoil ASA
Harald Ronneberg, Statoil ASA

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Abstract

In this paper we present the experience gained and lessons learned when the IT department at Statoil ASA, a large Oil and Gas company in Norway, extended their Enterprise Architecture with strategic level Domain-Driven design techniques and used the extended Enterprise Architecture to improve the software architecture of a large enterprise system.

Traditionally, Enterprise Architecture has been prescribed as the key tool to conquer complexity and align IT development with business priorities and strategies, but we found our Enterprise Architecture too coarse to be practical useful at the software level. By extending our Enterprise Architecture with context maps and the process of context mapping valuable insight was gained, insight that enabled better scoping of new projects and architectural improvement of existing software in a controlled way.

In addition, use of responsibility layers combined with context maps reduces the perceived complexity of the architecture. Use of other techniques such as distillation and identification of the core domain looks promising at the tactical level of a single project, but its value is more uncertain at the strategic level. The key issue is that large enterprise systems do not have a single core. On the other hand, at the project level, there should always be a core, and the project is best of by knowing its core domain and aim its best resources to work with the core.

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