There is a key enabler for collaboration, transparency, and more effective and efficient government. That key enabler is to be able to share, understand and federate our enterprise-business and I.T. architectures at all levels. Architecture, in this sense, is inclusive: embracing everything from a multi-national plan to the structure of a database. Architectures describe organizations, systems of systems, individual systems, information, services, resources and processes.
To be able to collaborate, understand, share or reuse requires that the information about organizations, systems or data be easily shared, found, understood and federated. When we create a multi-organizational initiative, that initiative has to federate architectures from its components parts and needs to federate with the architectures of organizations it collaborates with. When we want to utilize data, we must understand the architecture and vocabulary of that data. By improving our ability to share and federate our architectures we improve our ability to collaborate, share and reuse. We can’t use what we don’t understand.
Federation is key – none of these organizations, systems or resources stands alone and none can control the other. By federating our architectures we create something larger than the sum of its parts and a critical resource for government and industry. We enable our national priorities.
The problem we face is that this pivotal information is not readily accessible, it is in a variety of standard and proprietary formats and is not able to be published and linked in a way that is easily consumable. To be useful this information must be web-accessible, linked and standards based. We have existing standards and technologies that can help, but they have not been put together for this purpose. We have also not put together the governance framework for managing such a federated environment.
Our proposal is an initiative for a “Global Architecture Integration Network” (GAIN) based on our existing internet capabilities enhanced with open standards and open technologies. GAIN could help with some of our hardest problems: Healthcare, Financial Recovery, Joint Forces, and Terrorism. It could be an important enabler for the President’s objectives that government be transparent, participatory and collaborative.
GAIN would increase the value of data resources, shared services, process improvement, service oriented architectures, enterprise architecture and other architectures to help us share, collaborate, be more efficient and plan strategically.
We have a base on which to create GAIN. We have the Web, we have semantic technologies and linked data, we have standards for modeling and we have open source technologies and resources for managing and using knowledge and metadata. These existing resources provide us with the framework for GAIN.
We have started to develop the GAIN idea on a portal: http://portal.modeldriven.org/project/GAIN (or http://www.GainInitiative.net)
We appreciate feedback on GAIN and welcome participation