Navigating the SOA Open Standards Landscape Around Architecture – Executive Summary


An abundance of specifications and standards have emerged from the open standards organizations of OASIS, OMG, and The Open Group on the subject of Service Oriented Architecture (SOA). This joint document – contributed to by members of the OASIS SOA Reference Model Technical Committee (OASIS SOA-RM TC), OMG, and The Open Group – was written to help the SOA community at large to navigate the myriad of overlapping technical products produced by these organizations with specific emphasis on the “A” in SOA; i.e., Architecture.

This document explains and positions architectural standards for SOA reference models and ontologies, reference architectures, maturity models, SOA modeling languages, and open standards work related to the topic of SOA governance. It also outlines the agreement on core SOA and SOA governance concepts. This document is intended to serve as a guide to the reader to help differentiate and select specifications appropriate to their needs.

The specifications introduced and positioned in this document include the OASIS Reference Model for SOA, the OASIS Reference Architecture for SOA Foundation, the OMG SoaML Specification, The Open Group SOA Ontology, The Open Group SOA Reference Architecture, The Open Group SOA Governance Framework, and The Open Group Service Integration Maturity Model (OSIMM).

This document outlines where the works are similar and helps users of the technical products produced by the open standards organizations to understand the strengths of each body of work and select the technical products most appropriate for their needs, consistent with where they are today, and where they plan to head on their SOA journeys.

A secondary goal was to facilitate collaboration between the standards bodies to encourage consistency across the standards addressing the various aspects of SOA. It is anticipated that future work on SOA standards may consider the relative positioning described here to reduce overlaps and gaps between related standards.