Enterprise as adjective, enterprise as noun

In enterprise-architecture, in what sense are we using the word ‘enterprise’? As adjective, or as noun? This is another point of language that turns out to be surprisingly important…

We can use ‘enterprise’ as adjective, to describe a scope for something else. That’s the sense that’s used in classic IT-oriented ‘enterprise-architecture’: the context or concern is IT-architecture, at an enterprise-wide scope.

Or we can use ‘enterprise’ as noun, to describe a context or focus of interest, which in turn implies its own scope. That’s the sense that’s used in ‘whole-enterprise architecture: the focus of the architecture is the enterprise itself, and the role of the organisation within that broader enterprise.

The adjective and the noun are related, of course, but they’re not the same. Don’t mix them up!

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