Linked to a function or resulting from functional decomposition

Introduction to the notion

The term “functional” has become extremely polysemous. We associate it with all kinds of notions (domain, management, architecture, responsibility…) and its content varies according to these associations. With a view to reducing confusion as much as possible, Praxeme focuses on the first meaning of the term, given by the etymology, and seeks to replace it everywhere a better term is available. The adjective “functional” refers back, or course, to the substantive “function”. In the enterprise, “function” conjures up as much functional management, the main functions of the value chain (R&D, marketing, production, support…) as the breakdown of activities into functions.

From an epistemological point of view, the critique of knowledge and practices has no difficulty in discovering a functional approach that stands out in people’s minds. It can be seen both in organizational and IT design. It is characterized by top-down hierarchical breakdown of activities (no matter what name we give to them: functions, tasks, procedures, capabilities…). Experience has shown that this approach fuels redundancy in both processes and IT solutions. Without abandoning this approach totally, we have to compensate for it using other techniques. That is what Praxeme proposes by, on the one hand, introducing semantic modeling and, on the other hand, by specifying the architectural practices that can be applied to the pragmatic aspect.

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