View Defence Line of Development


A term used by the UK Ministry of Defence, particularly in the acquisition and planning for acquisition.

A Defence Line of Development (DLOD) provides a way of view a programme, set of programmes or strategy from a specific perspective. In a sense it provides a means for the MoD for matrix management of a programme or strategy.

There are 9 DLODs:

  • Concepts & Doctrine
  • Equipment
  • Information
  • Infrastructure
  • Interoperability
  • Logistics
  • Organisation
  • Personnel
  • Training

From the MoD Acquisition Operating Framework (AOF):

Concepts & Doctrine

A Concept is an expression of the capabilities that are likely to be used to accomplish an activity in the future. Doctrine is an expression of the principles by which military forces guide their actions and is a codification of how activity is conducted today. It is authoritative, but requires judgement in application.


The provision of military platforms, systems and weapons, (expendable and non-expendable, including updates to legacy systems) needed to outfit/equip an individual, group or organisation.


The provision of a coherent development of data, information and knowledge requirements for capabilities and all processes designed to gather and handle data, information and knowledge. Data is defined as raw facts, without inherent meaning, used by humans and systems. Information is defined as data placed in context. Knowledge is Information applied to a particular situation.


The acquisition, development, management and disposal of all fixed, permanent buildings and structures, land, utilities and facility management services (both Hard and Soft facility management (FM)) in support of Defence capabilities. It includes estate development and structures that support military and civilian personnel.


In addition to the DLoD, Interoperability is included as an overarching theme that must be considered when any DLoD is being addressed. The ability of UK Forces and, when appropriate, forces of partner and other nations to train, exercise and operate effectively together in the execution of assigned missions and tasks. In the context of DLoD, Interoperability also covers interaction between Services, UK Defence capabilities, Other Government Departments and the civil aspects of interoperability, including compatibility with Civil Regulations. Interoperability is used in the literal sense and is not a compromise lying somewhere between integration and de-confliction.


Logistics is the science of planning and carrying out the operational movement and maintenance of forces. In its most comprehensive sense, it relates to the aspects of military operations which deal with; the design and development, acquisition, storage, transport, distribution, maintenance, evacuation and disposition of materiel; the transport of personnel; the acquisition, construction, maintenance, operation, and disposition of facilities; the acquisition or furnishing of services, medical and health service support.


Relates to the operational and non-operational organisational relationships of people. It typically includes military force structures, MOD civilian organisational structures and Defence contractors providing support.


The timely provision of sufficient, capable and motivated personnel to deliver Defence outputs, now and in the future.


The provision of the means to practise, develop and validate, within constraints, the practical application of a common military doctrine to deliver a military capability.


In each of the UK armed services (army, navy, air force) there is a DLOD owner.

Proper consideration of the DLODs is necessary in order to get an equipment into service:

Equipment is accepted for Service when Customer 1, as Acceptance Authority, supported by relevant stakeholders from his/her CWG, agree that it has met the requirements: this acceptance may be staged where all the requirements have not yet been met but a useable capability exists. When all DLODS are in place to support an agreed quantity of the equipment that represents a deployable capability, the Customer 1 will recommend that the appropriate Service Chief declare the ISD.

Taken from 2.11 of the Joint Second Customer Handbook

The British Army have slightly different Lines of Development (LOD) , for example including Sustainaibility, Decision Support. They have 7.


Architecture Views

DLODs are a common way of viewing acquisition activity in the UK MoD and therefore are often used as methods of grouping, similar to swimlanes, for the MODAF::AcV-2 Programme Timelines View.


Useful to ensure completeness of coverage but there is a tendency to immediately jump into one of these DLODs and forget ‘the whole’ i.e. more integration and ownership of the whole not just the individual DLODs. The whole is almost certainly not the sum of the DLOD parts.

It isn’t obvious from the AOF whether Interoperability is a DLOD - it seems to suggest that it isn’t but it is listed with the others and treated in exactly the same way.

It would be useful to have a small model showing how the DLODs affect or depend on each other - this would show where communication needs to occur and identify typical products that are necessary and which need to be managed.


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