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UML FAQ: What is the relationship between MDD and other similar Model-Driven/Model-Based acronym expressions (MBSE, MDSE, MDE, MDA, MBE, MBSD)?

Model-Driven Development (MDD) is frequently confused with several other acronym expressions that begin with either "Model-Based" or "Model-Driven". The short answer is that Model-Driven Development is a subdiscipline of the more generic Model-Based Engineering system development paradigm. MBE is a system development paradigm that emphasizes the use of rigorous visual modeling techniques throughout the System Development Life Cycle (SDLC); MDD is a specialization of MBE that applies MBE principles and best practices to Software Engineering applications.

For a longer and more thorough explanation of the relationships among Model-Driven Development, Model-Based Engineering, and related MBE subdisciplines check out the Model-Based Engineering Forum and the Model-Based Engineering Visual Glossary.