How do government organizations define and implement custom DITA specializations?

Customizing DITA specializations for government organizations requires a structured approach to meet specific content and formatting needs. Here’s a brief overview of the process:

Analysis and Requirements Gathering

Analysis and Requirements Gathering form the initial phase of defining custom DITA specializations for government entities. This involves identifying the unique needs and content structure requirements. Government organizations often have specialized documentation needs, such as compliance, security, and industry-specific regulations. By analyzing these requirements, organizations can determine the necessary customizations.

Custom DTD or Schema Development

Custom DTD or Schema Development is the next step. In this phase, government organizations create a Document Type Definition (DTD) or XML Schema that reflects the specialized content structure. This includes defining custom elements, attributes, and constraints. For example, a government organization may need specific elements to capture compliance information or security classifications. The DTD or Schema acts as a blueprint for the customizations.

XML Authoring and Training

With the custom DTD or Schema in place, government organizations can proceed with XML Authoring and Training. This involves educating content creators on the new specialization rules and guiding them on how to author content using the customized elements. Proper training ensures that the documentation team can efficiently create content while adhering to the specialized structure.


Here’s an example of a custom DITA specialization for a government organization:

  <title>Government Document</title>
  <classification level="confidential" />

In this example, we have a custom <custom-topic> element with specific elements like <classification> and <compliance-info> to capture the security classification and compliance details. These customizations are tailored to the government’s specific documentation needs.