International standards – Creating confidence globally – 42nd World Standards Day – 14 October 2011
2011-10-14 – World Standards Day is celebrated each year on 14 October to pay tribute to the efforts of thousands of experts worldwide who collaborate within IEC, ISO and ITU to develop voluntary International Standards that facilitate trade, spread knowledge and disseminate technological advances.
The theme of World Standards Day 2011 is, “International standards – Creating confidence globally”.
The World Standards Day message is signed by the leaders of the three principal international standardization organizations: Dr. Klaus Wucherer, President of the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC): Dr. Boris Aleshin, President of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), and Dr. Hamadoun Touré, Secretary-General of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU). The three organizations are the partners making up the World Standards Cooperation (WSC).
Their message points out that international standards for products and services underpin quality, ecology, safety, reliability, interoperability, efficiency and effectiveness. Standards do all of this while giving manufacturers confidence in their ability to reach out to global markets safe in the knowledge that their product will perform globally.
This is because international standards provide interoperability which in turn creates economies of scale and ensures that users can obtain equal service wherever they travel. So international standards benefit consumers, manufacturers and service providers alike. Importantly, in developing countries this accelerates the deployment of new products and services and encourages economic development.
“In today’s world we need to have a high level of expectation that things will work the way we expect them to work,” the three leaders affirm.
“We expect that when we pick up the phone we will be able to instantly connect to any other phone on the planet. We expect to be able to connect to the Internet and be provided with news and information… instantly. When we fall ill, we rely on the healthcare equipment used to treat us. When we drive our cars, we have confidence that the engine management, steering and braking, and child safety systems are reliable. We expect to be protected against electrical power failure and the harmful effects of pollution.”
The heads of IEC, ISO and ITU underline that international standards create confidence globally, adding, “Indeed one of the key objectives of standardization is to provide this confidence. Systems, products and services perform as we expect them to because of the essential features specified in international standards.”
In addition, international standards create confidence by being developed in an environment of openness and transparency, where every stakeholder can contribute.
The three standardization leaders conclude by emphasizing that the objective of IEC, ISO and ITU is to “facilitate and augment this confidence globally, so as to connect the world with international standards”.