Enterprise architecture management (EAM) is becoming a widely accepted management approach deemed to improve business IT alignment and to reduce IT complexity, among others. However, EAM initiatives are often criticized for requiring significant setup costs and not delivering the expected benefits. Drawing on the resource-based theory, we develop a framework for understanding EAM's value generating mechanisms and apply it to investigate eight case studies. We find that four EAM capabilities - EA modeling, EA planning, EA implementation, and EA operation - improve central IS capabilities, namely IS planning and change management, market responsiveness, IS-business partnerships, and cost-effective IS operations. However, firms only effectively use EAM if they produce and provide boundary-spanning architecture-related information and make more informed decisions to encounter strategic challenges such as increasing IT complexity and declining IT alignment. Our study contributes to the emerging discipline of EAM by proposing a theory-led and empirically validated model for explaining how EAM benefits unfold.
[Joint research with Dr. Johannes Lux and Prof. Dr. Christine Legner]
Frederik Ahlemann holds the chair for Information Systems and Strategic IT Management at the University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany. He obtained an Information Systems Diploma from the University of Münster, Germany and worked as a project management consultant for two years. Following this period, he joined the Faculty of Economics and Business Administration at the University of Osnabrück where he obtained his doctorate in 2006. He subsequently joined the European Business School, Germany as an Assistant Professor where he headed a competence center for strategic IT/IS management. In 2012 he was appointed full professor at the University of Duisburg-Essen. Prof. Ahlemann's research interests are project portfolio management, enterprise architecture management, and IS strategy. His projects are funded by major German enterprises from the automotive, software, and professional services industries. Prof. Dr. Ahlemann has authored and co-authored more than 80 scientific and professional publications, has won several research and teaching awards, and is a renowned speaker and consultant.