The Open Group Cloud Ecosystem Reference Model


This document defines The Open Group Cloud Ecosystem Reference Model and provides guidance on how to apply it with The Open Group TOGAF® and ArchiMate® standards to develop an Enterprise Architecture. It has been developed and approved by The Open Group.

Enterprises are under increasing pressure to deliver greater business agility. Cloud solutions are rapidly and efficiently evolving to reach this end and at reduced overall costs. In order to deliver the agility and cost savings envisioned, an Enterprise Architecture of an enterprise’s Cloud Ecosystem must be developed. This will allow rapid cloud solutions development and enhancement opportunities.

The Cloud Ecosystem of an enterprise provides critical and essential enabling capabilities to meet the demand for greater flexibility in delivering cloud business solutions. To address any gap in the enterprise’s capabilities, an enterprise often collaborates with the participants of a Cloud Ecosystem (e.g., Cloud Service Providers, strategic vendors) and leverages participants’ Cloud Services. However, the use of Cloud Services provided by participating external entities of a Cloud Ecosystem has implications on the Enterprise Architecture that require frequent assessments of changes in Cloud Services to ensure timely evolution. Approaching the Cloud Ecosystem within the context of an Enterprise’s Architecture will provide the necessary alignment with the enterprise’s strategic vision, goals, and objectives.

This standard is structured as follows:

  • Chapter 1 is an introduction to this standard.
  • Chapter 2 defines the general terms used.
  • Chapter 3 defines the Cloud Ecosystem Reference Model. The Reference Model describes major actors and their inter-relationships, taxonomy, and architecture principles, and highlights a minimum set of Architecture Building Blocks (ABBs) to be realized and facilitated by at least one of the new or existing participants of an enterprise Cloud Ecosystem.
  • Chapter 4 describes all the significant concepts in development, management, and governance of an enterprise Cloud Ecosystem.
  • Chapter 5 provides the informative case study of the “CloudEcoSource” organization to develop an Enterprise Architecture for the Cloud Ecosystem with the Cloud Ecosystem Reference Model. The chapter lists the TOGAF Architecture Development Method (ADM) phases and the steps needed to develop, manage, and govern the Cloud Ecosystem of the CloudEcoSource organization.

Intended Audience

This standard should be read by an Architect wishing to develop, manage, and govern an Enterprise Architecture for the Cloud Ecosystem. The intended audience of this standard includes but is not limited to:

  • TOGAF practitioners
  • Cloud Service Consumers and Providers
  • Business and technical executives of an enterprise
  • Business and technical architects
  • Business and technical solution developers
  • Business and technical operational team(s)
  • Enterprise governance team(s)
  • Enterprise business and management team

The information in this standard can be used stand-alone or with an encompassing Architecture Development Method (ADM), such as the TOGAF ADM. Integration with the TOGAF standard and extension steps are described in Chapter 5 of this standard.