Air University Catalog
In August 1996 Air Force chief of staff decided to reorganize Air Force doctrine institutions. He based this decision on the growing importance of joint war fighting and the perceived need to increase the Air Force's understanding of aerospace power doctrine. He realized that the other services had well-staffed organizations dedicated to writing doctrine and that their members were better educated in doctrine.
Headquarters Air Force Doctrine Center (AFDC) reports directly to the Air Force chief of staff. The unit's location at Maxwell gives its members immediate access to the resources of Air University including the Air University Library, Air War College, Air Command and Staff College, Squadron Officer School, and the College of Aerospace Doctrine Research and Education.
The center serves as the "single voice" for Air Force doctrine development; represents the Air Force in joint doctrine forums; assesses the effects of new concepts and technologies on aerospace doctrine; and pursues the correct representation of aerospace power and doctrine in models, simulations, exercises, and war games.
Approximately 100 individuals, military and civilian, are assigned to Headquarters AFDC. The commander's office and the Doctrine Development, Doctrine Applications, Doctrine Deployment Directorates are located in the headquarters building at Maxwell AFB. The Joint Integration Directorate is located at Langley AFB, Virginia.
The Doctrine Development Directorate focuses on writing and publishing doctrine documents. The Doctrine Applications Directorate examines exercises, war games, models, and simulations to assess the accuracy of aerospace doctrine. The Doctrine Deployment Directorate advocates and deploys timely and focused aerospace doctrine by providing tailored doctrine education and responsive doctrine support of requests for doctrinal assistance. The Joint Integration Directorate maintains close coordination with Army, Navy, and Marine Corps doctrine commands; the joint chiefs; and North Atlantic Treaty Organization allies.
In addition, the Doctrine Center maintains operating locations at six military sites where aerospace power is an important part of Army training. These locations are National Training Center, Nellis AFB, Nevada; air defense training, Fort Bliss, Texas; armor training, Fort Knox, Kentucky; combined arms training, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas; aviation training, Fort Rucker, Alabama; and artillery training, Fort Sill, Oklahoma. At each site, Headquarters AFDC personnel serve as Air Force representatives to the Army. They advocate proper application of aerospace power, articulate aerospace doctrine, provide feedback on emerging doctrinal issues, and participate in Army doctrine development.
Through AFDC, the Air Force has refined the doctrine development process. Today, Air Force doctrine is codified in a series of Air Force doctrine documents (AFDD). Several AFDDs including AFDD 1, Air Force Basic Doctrine, have been completely rewritten. AFDC has completed 33 AFDDs and has several others in various stages of revision as part of a two-year review process. An AFDD can be proposed at anytime through the Air Force Doctrine Working Group. The typical AFDD takes about one year for writing, staffing, coordinating, and publishing cycle. Each AFDD is assigned to an action officer within Headquarters AFDC who shepherds the document through the development process. Headquarters AFDC has taken advantage of available technology to publicize and disseminate doctrinal issues. All AFDDs, including those published and those under development, are available for review and comment through the Headquarters AFDC web page. This comprehensive web site also includes lessons learned and doctrinal initiatives for review and comment.
To provide Air Force-wide involvement in doctrine development, Headquarters AFDC semiannually hosts the Air Force Doctrine Working Group. The major commands and air staff agencies send senior officers to provide recommendations on doctrine to the Headquarters AFDC commander. Any Air Force organization may introduce issues before the group. Official recommendations require majority approval by senior officer representatives. To date, the Air Force Doctrine Working Group has recommended and the Headquarters AFDC commander has authorized the development of 33 AFDDs that address functional areas of aerospace power.
Since autumn 1997, Doctrine Applications staff members have participated in numerous Air Force and joint service exercises and war games to assess doctrine-related issues and improve the representation of aerospace power. Doctrine Applications personnel have also served on the Air Force Exercise Coordination Team, visited Air Force battle labs, and attended modeling conferences to draw attention to the importance of aerospace doctrine and increase opportunities for assessing aerospace power employment.