Enterprise Architecture: an Interface Concept Between the Economics and the Management of the Firm

José Carlos Cavalcanti


This paper aims to broadly discuss a subject that intends to be an interface between the economics and the management of the firm: the Enterprise Architecture. This concept is viewed here as the most appropriate means to understand the impact of the information content, of the information systems, and of the information and communication technologies- ICTs on the internal technological and organizational choices of the firm. In support to this argument it relies on three main steps. Initially, a brief review of the main theories (economic and management) of the firm is made highlighting their contributions, caveats and convergences. Then the paper bases its analysis on the concept of the firm as an “engine of information” and on a concept from the Computing Science and Engineering, Enterprise Architecture, to point out that these concepts bring up important contributions towards a more consistent interpretation of what the firm is (or how it is organized) currently, in which is practically impossible to exist without the modern information tools. Finally, it is presented an innovative methodology, in an analogy to the Structure-Conduct-Performance Paradigm (that is traditionally used on the empirical market analysis), which identifies the firm according to three linear connected approaches: its architecture, its governance, and its growth strategy.


JEL Classification: L22- Firm organization and market structure; L23- Organization of production; L25- Firm performance: size, diversification and scope; L86- Information and Internet services; Computer software; M15- IT management; O32- Management of tec

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