Can DITA support versioning of translated content for reuse?

Yes, DITA can support versioning of translated content for reuse.

In the context of DITA, versioning ensures that translated content remains aligned with changes in the source content, allowing organizations to maintain consistency and manage updates effectively. The key aspects of versioning translated DITA content include:

  • Version Control: Organizations employ version control systems to track changes in the source content. These systems maintain a history of revisions and provide a clear audit trail for all modifications made to source content.
  • Structured Content Management: Structured content management practices ensure that updates in the source content are systematically applied to translated content. These practices involve establishing relationships between source and translated content and tracking dependencies.
  • Conditional Processing: DITA’s conditional processing attributes, such as “conkeyref” and “conref,” play a vital role in versioning. They enable conditions to be associated with content, allowing for condition-specific updates as changes are made in the source content.
  • Key References: Key references link source and reused content. When the source content is modified, key references facilitate the automatic propagation of changes to all instances where the content is reused, including translations.


Imagine a scenario where a DITA topic about a software application is updated to reflect new features. To ensure versioning of translated content, a version control system tracks these updates and identifies the changes made to the source content. Key references in the DITA maps and topics link to the source content, enabling the automatic application of updates in the translated versions.

<topic id="software-features" conkeyref="software-version" conref="feature-descriptions.dita"/>