MAP for Digital Transformation – Laboratory of Architectural and Technological Governance

Methodology, Architecture and Practice (MAP) for Digital Transformation is a series of blogpost about #DigitalTransformation.

This blogpost is about a Laboratory of Architectural and Technological Governance of “Smart Everything”

1 Why the laboratory is created (what is the reason for this?)

The Laboratory of Architectural and Technological Governance of Smart Everything (LATGOSE) is created for systematic and integrated execution of a national programme “Smart Everything”.

The Laboratory is aimed at solving real-life issues which are important for people, business and the state. Thus the Laboratory will compliment typical activities such as AR/VR, AI, blockchain, communication infrastructure, data centres, etc.

The Laboratory is considered as a medium-term endeavour.

2 Mission (which problem is solved and for whom?)

The mission statement of the Laboratory is "Making the world easier” by offering a coherent set of smart solutions of issues which are important for people, business and the state.

Such issues are complex because of their multidisciplinary nature as a mixture of economic, social, technological, legislative and environmental aspects. Solutions for such issues must be smart – in other words, such solutions must be being able to achieve their goals in a sustainable (with maintaining stability) way.

We believe that such solutions are digital sociotechnical systems, which are built with primary use of
  • common architectural and technological approaches;
  • potentials of information and communication technologies, and
  • modern IT tools.

3 Problem landscape

The variety of domains to be addressed by the Laboratory is outlined by the national programme of Smart Everything. Typical system domains are around people, business and the state.

4 Vision (description of the results)

People and businesses will be able to easily find a practical solution for a wide range of their real-life issues and apply such a solution (with some support from the state) with the use of to pre-arranged documents, methods, scenarios. It is expected that 80% of such issues will be covered by practical solutions in 3 years.

The Laboratory strategical direction is the implementation of the digital agenda (as it is defined by the national programme “Smart Everything”) to ensure inclusive and sustainable economic growth of the economy at any scale. This involves stimulating and supporting new digital initiatives and projects with the extensive use of information and communication technologies, new business processes and the creation of digital assets based on public and equal cooperation: municipal governments, small and medium-sized businesses and active citizens.

The wide involvement of small and medium-sized businesses with the regulatory and supervisory functions of local government is expected.

Initially, there will be a few pilot areas to build an initial version of the digital sociotechnical systems to be cloned and adapted to other clients.

5 Stakeholders

Primary beneficiaries:
  • People,
  • Businesses,
  • The state.

Secondary beneficiaries:
  • Public organizations,
  • Political parties,
  • Associations of people,
  • Companies providing local services,
  • Companies that develop digital solutions.

6 Informal description of the digital sociotechnical system

1 The person is in the centre of the attention of the digital sociotechnical system.

2 Typical usage of the digital sociotechnical system follows this pattern:
  1. A person formulates an issue that he / she wants to solve;
  2. The system offers several practical solutions to the issue;
  3. The person chooses a practical solution;
  4. The system helps the person to follow the chosen practical solution, i.e. indicates which documents on which templates should be prepared, forms requests to governmental agencies or other organizations, monitors the execution of a practical solution, etc.
  5. Later system will help the person in his subsequent activities related to this issue.

3 The selected architectural and technological decisions guarantee that digital sociotechnical systems are clonable and adaptable to local realities.

4 The selected architectural and technological decisions guarantee the coordination and integrationn of the digital sociotechnical system with systems implemented centrally at the state level.

5 Digital sociotechnical systems are complex digital constructions. The figure below outlines a reference architecture for only one systems domain – Smart Cities.

7 The Laboratory is a pilot factory of digital sociotechnical systems

The main activity of the Laboratory is
  • systemic building,
  • practical use,
  • continuous improvement and
  • dissemination
of the Digital Toolbox for Digital Transformation as the primary mean of constructing digital sociotechnical systems for specific conditions.

The Digital Toolbox for Digital Transformation allows to:
  • Decompose a "big" problem into an organized set of "small" problems;
  • Select an available solution for each " small" problem or create such a solution;
  • Assemble the “big” solution from the "small" solutions.

The Laboratory functions in the follow way:
  1. The Laboratory receives an order to solve a problem related to the mission of the Laboratory.
  2. The Laboratory analyses the order, conducts necessary surveys and proposes a variant of the digital sociotechnical system for the client (or an extension of the already existing system).
  3. If the proposal requires the development of some new components (i.e. solutions for "small" problems) then the Laboratory prepares the specifications, selects implementors from start-ups and partners and conducts architectural control of the work.
  4. The Laboratory synthesizes the solution for the ordered problem.
  5. The Laboratory works with the client to implement this solution.
  6. The Laboratory organizes support of the solution.

Digital Transformation of existing applications and business practices, related to the national program “Smart Everything” has the following specifics:
  • The solution architecture implies the mandatory use of information systems, or subsystems for new solutions, or tool platforms, or other digital media using information and communication technologies;
  • The solution architecture involves reengineering business processes to take advantage of primacy of the digital representation of the objects used in the business processes;
  • The solution architecture implies the standardization of many IT components and business practices, as well as the availability of various documents in public access.

The Laboratory will work on the basis of business processes and architecture governance which are already regulated, are well documented and have been tested in practice. Also, the following good business practices will be used:
  • development of initiatives, implementation and support of digital projects;
  • project and portfolio management;
  • development of effective mechanisms for the implementation of projects and accumulated competencies, and
  • support dialogue between stakeholders to promote good practices in the digital domain.

8 Strategic plan of the Laboratory

  1. Creation of the initial version of the Digital Toolbox for Digital Transformation.
  2. Implementation of several digital sociotechnical systems at a few pilot clients.
  3. Expanding the quantity and quality of implementation of digital sociotechnical systems.
  4. Deepening and expanding the functionality of the Digital Toolbox for Digital Transformation.

The figure below shows the life cycle complexly of the Laboratory and its products.

9 Top level functions of the Laboratory

Gradual creation and development of the Digital Toolbox for Digital Transformation, which consists of:
  • system of ontologies (or formal terminologies);
  • common methodology for the development of digital systems in the scope of “Smart Everything”;
  • reference digital sociotechnical system (common digital platforms, off-the-shelf IT products and a set of platform-based agile solutions);
  • common practices of governance, management and operations of digital sociotechnical systems;

Adapting digital sociotechnical systems to the realities of particular clients.
Creation of specifications for a new component within the common digital platform which can be implemented by start-ups or partners.
Building local teams for supporting of digital sociotechnical systems.
Enriching digital sociotechnical systems based on the experience of their implementation.
Supporting digital sociotechnical systems for various clients.
Dissemination of Laboratory experience.

10 Structure of the Laboratory

Office of the Chief Architect
  • Architectural group
  • Methodological group
  • Digital sociotechnical systems group
  • Group of new technologies
  • Architecture supervision group

Project office
  • Groups by branches of economy
  • Digitalization of territorial
  • Digitalization of social
  • Digitalization of lawmaking
  • Digitalization of public authorities

Training group
  • Consulting centre
  • Media Group
Service group

11 Other topics for which detail description can be provided on demand

Digital sociotechnical system:
  • emergent characteristics,
  • architectural principles,
  • architecture,
  • technologies,
  • reference solution architecture,
  • expected results,
  • required resources,
  • examples of (experience Canton Geneva, India's experience in ICT for the creation of "smart cities").

The roadmap.

The staffing plan of the Laboratory.

Budget of the laboratory for the first year.

Logistics services required for the successful operation of the Laboratory.