Zachman Framework

The Zachman Systems Framework maps Perspectives to Representations.

System Architecture Framework

When creating explicit definitions of even a small system, things can get very confusing very fast.  Having a simple Framework that can be used to organize information can be extremely helpful.

The Zachman Framework has withstood the test of time and has taken its place as one of the fundamental tools for System Architecture.  That Framework has been adapted for use on the Growth Management and Land Use system.

The Framework is for any System

Any System, whether manifest as a building, an aeroplane, or a neighborhood, can be observed from different points of view.

They can be described by Perspectives such as their materials, their processes, their locations, their people and organizations, their events and cycles, their outcomes and motivations.  Similar to how a reporter organizes information, we can ask the What, How, Where, Who, When, and Why for any system to create these descriptions.

They can also be described by their Representations such as architectural drawings, as-built layouts, utility controls, physical designs, or simply lists of items.  And since Representations are generally in the language of different participants in the System management process, this point of view can be identified by whom the Representation is for.

 

(colLeft)
(colRight)
  • lLevel1
    • lLevel2
  • lLevel1
    • lLevel2
    • lLevel2
      • class lLevel3
      • class lLevel3

The 2-dimensional Zachman matrix

Zachman is a simple 2-dimensional matrix that has Perspectives in the columns and Representations in the Rows.

Zachman framework

Cells are populated in the model when, and only when, there's an understanding of the importance that cell has to the actual System being viewed.  Ultimately, this becomes a judgement of risk to quality.  If an area is not of significant importance, it may be low risk to the System's Quality.  However, a very important Perspective or Representation my have great risk if assumptions are made about it.

Further information about the Zachman Framework can be found via the Zachman link at the bottom of the page.