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现代企业架构白皮书

Modern enterprise architecture white paper

2020 was the year of "black swan" events, but it was also the year that brought a new wave of digitalization. This wave of digital transformation is already entering the strategic main channels of various industries and enterprises at an accelerated pace. Innovating and reshaping businesses through digitalization has become a new force and a new battlefield for enterprises.


The proposal of the concept of "Zhongtai" (middle platform) and its popularization reflect the business modernization trend represented by "business platformization" in this round of digital transformation. At the same time, a series of new problems and challenges have emerged throughout this process:


  • How to extract solutions and capabilities shared by multiple business lines while retaining centralized control and continuing evolution to avoid duplication of investment? How can new businesses be quickly assembled and launched based on the company's existing solutions and capabilities to support rapid business iteration and innovation?
  • How to reasonably divide the boundaries of the IT system to get responsiveness to changing "needs"?
  • How to appropriately split over-concentrated analytical data-processing responsibilities to alleviate the bottleneck of large-scale data analysis and processing?
  • How to select and design platform-based technology architecture in our era-rich technology?


As a result, the enterprise architecture and the enterprise architecture framework have returned to the attention of industries and become an important theoretical basis and guiding tool for enterprise structure governance, enterprise platform transformation, and enterprise digital transformation. Our new focus and research area is to return to the basics, to rethink and build a new lightweight enterprise architecture framework by integrating the latest needs of enterprise digital development, the requirements of platform-based enterprise architecture and new technology trends, while taking the aforementioned problems and challenges as the traction and goals.


The old needs to be torn down to make way for the new. By absorbing the great ideas and best practices of the classic enterprise architecture framework, and through several years of research and practice, ThoughtWorks has come up with its own enterprise architecture framework method, which we've dubbed the Modern Enterprise Architecture Framework (MEAF).

Content Overview

Modern enterprise architecture framework

Modern enterprise architecture framework

In the design of the modern enterprise architecture framework (MEAF), we maximize the continuation and integration of the classic enterprise architecture framework for the division of Viewpoint and View. The current version mainly starts from four types of architecture views: enterprise architecture, application architecture, data architecture and technical architecture, and focuses on the premise and background of platform enterprise architecture design under different architecture views. It aims to figure out how to design and apply the metamodel to re-model enterprise architecture to meet the needs of modern enterprise architecture design while ensuring that the enterprise architecture can be implemented. 

Application architecture

Application architecture

MEAF's application architecture metamodel includes three parts: "port", "structure", and "state." The structure part is used to model the responsibilities and boundaries of the IT system, including application components, applications, application groups, and application layers. The port part is used to model the entrance and exit of the application, including application services and extension points, and the state part is used to model changes in application state, including domain objects and invariants. MEAF's application architecture will be based on helping companies solve the problem of how to reasonably divide the boundaries of IT systems to obtain responsiveness that can adapt to changing "needs".

Data architecture

Data architecture

Not to be confused with the data center, MEAF's data architecture metamodel includes two parts: "structure" and "port". The structure part is used to model the data model and data processing, including data objects and data components. The port part is used to model the boundary of the data model, including data services. MEAF's data architecture will be based on helping companies solve the problem of how to appropriately split over-concentrated analytical data processing responsibilities to ease the bottleneck of large-scale data analysis and processing.

Technical architecture

Technical architecture

MEAF's technical architecture metamodel is derived from the addition and extension of the classic technical architecture framework, and consists of three parts: an architecture pattern model, an architecture solution model, and a technology strategy model. The architecture pattern model introduces a pattern analysis viewpoint to analyze and model the design intent and problems of the upper-level architecture for the purpose of quickly and accurately locating the design and reusing technical solutions. The architecture solution model is the core metamodel that describes the design of the technical architecture. We use the three progressive elements of platform, service, and components to model the technical architecture. The architecture strategy model is the constraint and guidance for the architectural design process. MEAF's technical architecture will be based on helping companies solve the problem of how to select and design platform-based technical architecture in our technology-rich era.

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