What role does specialization play in adapting DITA maps for different industries?

Specialization plays a crucial role in adapting DITA maps for different industries by allowing organizations to create custom map structures, elements, and metadata that align with industry-specific documentation requirements. It enables the efficient tailoring of DITA maps to meet the unique needs of various industries.

How Specialization Works

Specialization is instrumental in adapting DITA maps for different industries and functions through custom map structures, metadata customization, and element definitions.

Custom Map Structures

Different industries may require unique content structures, sections, and hierarchies in their documentation. Specialization enables the creation of industry-specific map structures that best serve the needs of that domain.

Metadata Customization

Industries often have specific metadata requirements, such as regulatory compliance data or industry-standard classifications. Specialization allows organizations to define and include custom metadata elements to capture this industry-specific information.

Element Definitions

Specialization permits the definition of custom DITA elements that cater to the specific content and terminology of a given industry. This ensures that content authors work with elements and semantics that align with their domain.


DITA maps are specialized for two distinct industries: healthcare and automotive manufacturing.

Specialized Map – Healthcare.ditamap

<!-- Specialized map for healthcare industry -->
  <title>Healthcare Documentation</title>
  <!-- Specialized metadata for healthcare -->
  <industry-classification>Medical Devices</industry-classification>
  <!-- Customized structure for healthcare documentation -->
  <topicref href="introduction.dita" />
  <topicref href="patient-care.ditamap" />

Specialized Map – Automotive.ditamap

<!-- Specialized map for automotive manufacturing -->
  <title>Automotive Documentation</title>
  <!-- Specialized metadata for the automotive industry -->
  <industry-classification>Vehicle Manufacturing</industry-classification>
  <!-- Customized structure for automotive documentation -->
  <topicref href="introduction.dita" />
  <topicref href="assembly-manual.ditamap" />

In this example:

  • The specialized map for the healthcare industry (“Healthcare.ditamap”) includes healthcare-specific metadata like “industry-classification” and a customized structure for patient care documentation.
  • The specialized map for automotive manufacturing (“Automotive.ditamap”) has its own industry-specific metadata and a customized structure for assembly manuals.