Roles and capabilities of enterprise architecture in big data analytics technology adoption and implementation

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Organizations are attempting to harness the power of big data analytics. Enterprise architecture can be used as an instrument to integrate big data analytics into the existing IT landscape and enabling the development of capabilities to create value from these technologies. Yet, there is limited research about the role of enterprise architecture in adopting big data analytics. This paper explores enterprise architecture roles and capabilities for the adoption of big data analytics by conducting a qualitative case study at the Dutch Tax and Customs Administration. The first attempt to adopt big data analytics was focused on integrating analytics into the current complex IT landscape, but this encountered many challenges and resulted in slow progress. To overcome these challenges, a separate department was created to quickly harness the potential of big data analytics. Enterprise architecture was used for impact analysis and to create a transition process. The findings suggest that enterprise architecture was used in different ways at the various stages of adoption and implementation, requiring different roles and a different set of capabilities. Enterprise architecture was found to be contingent on the type of technology and the situation at hand. We recommend more research into the role of the context in enterprise architecture research.