Thursday, November 10, 2016

Steering The Enterprise of Brexit

Two contrasting approaches to Brexit from architectural thought leaders.

Dan Onions offers an eleven-step decision plan based on his DASH method, showing the interrelated decisions to be taken on Brexit as a DASH output map.

A decision plan for Brexit (Dan Onions)


A stakeholder map for Brexit (Dan Onions)


Let me now contrast Dan's approach with Simon Wardley's. Simon had been making a general point about strategy and execution on Twitter.
Knowing Simon's views on Brexit, I asked whether he would apply the same principle to the UK Government's project to exit the European Union.







Simon's diagram revolves around purpose. OODA is a single loop, and the purpose is typically unproblematic. This reflects the UK government's perspective on Brexit, in which the purpose is assumed to be simply realising the Will of the People. The Prime Minister regards all interpretation, choice, decision and direction as falling under her control as leader. And according to the Prime Minister's doctrine, attempts by other stakeholders (such as Parliament or the Judiciary) to exert any governance over the process is tantamount to frustrating the Will of the People.

Whereas Dan's notion is explicitly pluralist - trying to negotiate something acceptable to a broad range of stakeholders with different concerns. He characterizes the challenge as complex and nebulous. Even this characterization would be regarded as subversive by orthodox Brexiteers. It is depressing to compare Dan's careful planning with Government insouciance.

Elsewhere, Simon has acknowledged that "acting upon your strategic choices (the why of movement) can also ultimately change your goal (the why of purpose)". Many years ago, I wrote something on what I called Third-Order Requirements Engineering, which suggested that changing the requirements goal led to a change in identity - if your beliefs and desires have changed, then in a sense you also have changed. This is a subtlety that is lost on most conventional stakeholder management approaches. It will be fascinating to see how the Brexit constituency (or for that matter the Trump constituency) evolves over time, especially as they discover the truth of George Bernard Shaw's remark.
"There are two tragedies in life. One is to lose your heart's desire. The other is to gain it."


Dan Onions, An 11 step Decision Plan for Brexit (6 November 2016)

Richard Veryard, Third Order Requirements Engineering (SlideShare)

Based on R.A. Veryard and J.E. Dobson, 'Third Order Requirements Engineering: Vision and Identity', in Proceedings of REFSQ 95, Second International Workshop on Requirements Engineering, (Jyvaskyla, Finland: June 12-13, 1995)

Simon Wardley, On Being Lost (August 2016)

Related Posts: VPEC-T and Pluralism (June 2010)

1 comment:

Tim said...

Interesting and well written post Richard. I'd love to know more about your "third order requirements" approach.