ArchiMate Language Principles


Understand the principles and core concepts:
  • Underlying ideas
  • ArchiMate and its relationships
  • ArchiMate Framework
  • Motivation Extension
  • Implementation and Migration Extension

Underlying Ideas

The need to describe the architecture of IS/IT systems is fundamental to the governance of an organisation. But there are several hurdles that must be overcome.
Firstly, decisions need to be made as to the way these systems, which are likely to be very complicated in larger organisations, are described. A general approach is to think of the “entities”
which the system consists of, and the way they relate to each other. Inevitable as these entities are considered, the need to look at them in more specialised ways (i.e. business process view; software application view) becomes apparent. Architecture focuses on the highest level of detail.
Secondly, it is important to establish some formality to the way the architecture is described. EA does not need to be as detailed, for instance, as Business Process Modelling, and therefore does not need such a complexity of symbols.


  • To provide a “small” yet comprehensive modelling language
  • Addresses the needs of Enterprise architecture
  • Aimed purely at architects
  • Covers the main Architecture domains
ArchiMate has addressed both these issues by being relatively general, and by focusing on the main areas of importance to architects – Business, Application and Technology.
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Underlying Ideas