Ken Power

Ken Power

Complexity Navigator

@ken_power · Ireland


Ken is a Principal Engineer with Cisco. His work and research interests include agile, lean, flow, complex adaptive systemss, and organisation effectiveness, as well as software and systems architecture, Cloud, DevOps and software engineering management. He is a frequent speaker on these topics at major international agile, lean and software engineering conferences. He has published numerous papers on agile, lean, and software engineering, including winning the IEEE Software best paper award.


An Architect's Framework for Navigating Complexity

We want our organizations and systems to be agile, to evolve with the needs of the business, and to be resilient in the face of ever changing market conditions and the external environment. This level of adaptability and responsiveness needs to be supported by the architecture of the systems we create. The complexity of the environment that architects find themselves in is increasing in recent years, with cloud, DevOps, continuous deployment, and microservices adding to the factors that architects must consider. With this growing complexity, architects need to be supported by effective decision-making approaches. To navigate all of this, architects need to be adaptive; they need the ability to dynamically shift their decision-making approach to match the complexity of the circumstances they face.

This hands-on workshop presents a framework that helps architects to navigate complexity and make better decisions. Participants will engage in several activities that build upon each other. They will learn a number of practical and accessible tools and approaches, including sense-making and the Cynefin framework, that lead to more resilient architectures, systems, and organizations.


  • Part 1
    • Introduction
    • Overview of concepts
  • Part 2
    • Architecture descriptions
    • Using narrative to understand architecture
  • Part 3:
    • Sense Making analysis of architectures and their influence on the organisation
    • Analysing the patterns that emerge from the sense making activity
  • Part 4:
    • The Cynefin Framework, and how it applies to architecture
    • Designing experiments
  • Part 5:
    • Debrief and wrap up

Mel Conway

Inventor, Educator, Author of “Conway's Law”

Eric Evans

Author of “Domain-Driven Design”

Rebecca Wirfs-Brock

Responsibility-Driven Design

Udi Dahan

Founder of NServiceBus

Prof. David West

Author of “Object Thinking”

Jimmy Nilsson

Author of “Applying DDD & Patterns”

Weronika Łabaj


Debasish Ghosh

Functional and Algebraic Domain Modeling

Nick Tune

Co-author of “Patterns, Principles and Practices of DDD”

Greg Young

Creator of CQRS

Alberto Brandolini

Inventor of “EventStorming”

Felienne Hermans

Author of "Grokking Computational Logic"

Andra Sonea

Solutions Architect, Financial Services

Ken Power

Complexity Navigator

Jérémie Chassaing

Software Gardener

Scott Wlaschin

Creator of

Avraham Poupko

Technical leader

Edwin van Wijk

Software Architect

Romeu Moura

Reasoned Schemer

Marijn Huizendveld

Nerd in a suit

Stijn Volders


Robert Smallshire

Modeller of domains, systems and processes

Mathias Verraes

Student of Systems

Michel Grootjans


Yves Lorphelin

Loves Chaos & Failures

Arnaud Bailly

Event Sourcing, Functionally

Paul Rayner

Leading DDD and BDD practitioner

Nicole Rauch

Software Developer and Development Coach

Thomas Ploch

Infinite State Machine

Cyrille Martraire

Deliberate Designer

Thomas Coopman


Yves Reynhout

The Journeylist

Oana Juncu

Agile Business DJ

Allard Buijze

Pragmatic modeller, creator of AxonFramework

Vaughn Vernon

Author, consultant, trainer


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