An approach for identifying the strategic focus areas of a domain

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Abstract

The threat of flooding is of great concern to many countries and significant resources are spent to deal with this threat. A better understanding of the motivation of organizations responsible for flood control and their reasons for selecting certain modes and targets can help improve the decisions to allocate resources in the fight against flooding. The fundamental question addressed in this paper is: “How to identify the strategic capabilities of the flood control domain?” This question is addressed through engineering of a new generic approach which utilizes two methodologies of enterprise engineering discipline namely DEMO and CBM in a hybrid fashion. This approach is realized in the form of the SBCI-method which is an approach that allows the representation of the organization of the enterprise in terms of its essential building blocks, in which it is possible to identify those building blocks which are of strategic relevance. We take the view that preferences for actions are based on their values and beliefs. An important missing piece in our knowledge of these preferences is an understanding of their relevance and position in the construction of the system that is suppose to realize them. This paper uses a novel approach to determine these values and beliefs by determining them in full isolation from the systems that need to realize them, by using principles from enterprise engineering discipline and policy analysis paradigm. Hence instead of interviewing decision makers and stakeholders within organizations, as would be normal in policy analysis, we extract the objectives by examining the policy documents. And structure them in terms of strategic, business, and means objectives. These objectives are then mapped to the building blocks of the domain that is supposed to be responsible for their successful realization. This information is useful for understanding flood domain organizations motivations, intent, and likely actions, as well as for developing solutions to counter the threat of flooding.