Is it Disciplined Agile Delivery (DAD) or Disciplined Agile (DA)?

The quick answer is of course “Yes”.  😉

A couple of years ago we caused a bit of confusion when we expanded the scope of Disciplined Agile Delivery (DAD) to address the activities of an information technology (IT) department.  When we did this we realized that the scope of the toolkit and the name no longer matched, so we decided to rebrand to be simply the “Disciplined Agile (DA)” toolkit.  Having said that, sometimes it makes sense to say DAD and sometime DA depending on what you’re focusing on at the time.

The Scope of Disciplined Agile (DA)

As you can see in the following diagram, which depicts the scope of the DA toolkit, it’s clear why there has been some confusion because DA covers a lot of ground.

Scope of Disciplined Agile

Let’s explore each aspect depicted in the diagram:

  1. Disciplined Agile Delivery (DAD).  DAD addresses all aspects of solution delivery from beginning to end, in a streamlined manner.  This includes initial modelling and planning, forming the team, securing funding, continuous architecture, continuous testing, continuous development, and governance all the way through the lifecycle.  The framework includes support for multiple delivery lifecycles, including but not limited to a agile lifecycle based on Scrum, a lean lifecycle based on Kanban, and a modern agile lifecycle for continuous delivery.
  2. Disciplined DevOpsDisciplined DevOps is the streamlining of IT solution development and IT operations activities, and supporting enterprise-IT activities, to provide more effective outcomes to an organization.
  3. Disciplined Agile IT (DAIT).  As the name suggests DAIT addresses how to apply agile and lean strategies to all aspects of IT.  This includes IT-level activities such as enterprise architecture, data management, portfolio management, IT governance, and other capabilities.
  4. Disciplined Agile Enterprise.  A Disciplined Agile Enterprise is able to anticipate and respond swiftly to changes in the marketplace.  It does this through an organizational culture and structure that facilitates change within the context of the situation that it faces.  Such organizations require a learning mindset in the mainstream business and underlying lean and agile processes to drive innovation.

Some History

The first “1.0 release” was the original Disciplined Agile Delivery book in June of 2012.  As the title suggests the focus was on DAD, although it laid the groundwork for Disciplined DevOps in that it baked in the development side of DevOps right into DAD.  In 2015 we began publishing our work in both Disciplined DevOps and Disciplined Agile IT (DAIT) and renamed the toolkit to Disciplined Agile (DA) to reflect this expanded scope. Since 2017 we have begun to flesh out Disciplined Agile Enterprise strategies and will soon begin the share them here on this site.

Have any Question or Comment?

4 comments on “Is it Disciplined Agile Delivery (DAD) or Disciplined Agile (DA)?

Anders Larsson

While DAD seems to be a subset of DA, theoretically also other solution delivery frameworks could be considered DA?



Having said that, we’ve seen organizations flesh out SAFe implementations with DAD once they realize that SAFe doesn’t actually cover the situation that they face. We’ve also seen DAD applied in organizations using other “frameworks” such as PMBoK, CMMI, ITIL, and so on.

Methods such as Scrum, XP, Agile Modelling, and others would be considered subsets of DAD.

MIlind K Modak

SAFe is a fairly large and exhaustive framework. Scrum, XP, Kanban would be considered subsets of SAFe. Also SAFe is far better scalable than many other frameworks available. I say this after have implemented SAFe across large scale agile transformation programs.


Milind, it’s great to hear that you’ve been able to make SAFe work in practice. We consider SAFe to be a subset of DA.


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