Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala. – — The Air Force’s center for doctrine development has made it easier to access the service’s fundamental documents and has the potential to cut the time it takes to publish updates to the documents from years to months or even weeks.
Officials at the Curtis E. LeMay Center for Doctrine Development and Education culminated a yearlong restructuring effort last month on how doctrine is written and presented by formally launching their new doctrine database website at https://doctrine.af.mil.
Writing for his “Chief of Staff of the Air Force Perspective” on the website, Gen. Mark Welsh III reminds Airmen that doctrine is not stagnant, and he encourages them “to dive into the website to learn from the legends that came before us as well as today’s Airmen. Take full advantage of this new tool as we continue to build upon our doctrinal foundation for future Airmen and provide unbeatable airpower for America.”
The online database is organized into five core volumes and 29 supporting annexes with more than 900 doctrine topic modules, or DTMs, each of which focuses on a single concept within the alignment of their respective annexes. The five core volumes are Basic Doctrine, Leadership, Command, Operations, and Support.
The annexes are derived from current approved Air Force doctrine documents, or AFDD, and retain the corresponding joint publication numbering convention. Each DTM covers a discrete doctrine topic and can be revised when appropriate, rather than revising full volumes and annexes, thus allowing for more timely and focused revisions. The focus is on revising topics, not publications.
Before the restructure, doctrine was posted on the Air Force’s e-Publishing website in 32 singularly focused AFDDs that amassed more than 2,600 pages. Any revisions or updates normally took years before making it to the pages on the site.
“Using a database over publications vastly improves consistency of language and content in doctrine as well as the timeliness of updates,” said Maj. Gen. Walter Givhan, LeMay Center commander.
“Additionally, the database has a ‘Wiki-like’ feel to it, which we anticipate will increase its appeal and utility, especially among our younger Airmen.”
The new site includes a “frequently asked questions” section, the latest Doctrine Updates and Doctrine Advisories, an introduction to doctrine for “newcomers,” a keyword search tool, links to sister-service doctrine sites and other functions not available on the Air Force e-Publishing site.
For more on the LeMay Center, visit www.au.af.mil.