Standards that count and build trust

Message from Frans Vreeswijk, IEC General Secretary & CEO

IEC work has to be relevant to companies and countries to help them address real market and societal needs.

Frans Vreeswijk
Frans Vreeswijk, IEC General Secretary & CEO

Once upon a time standardization was simple and straightforward. Most products didn’t contain electronic interfaces, they were either mechanical or electrical, and most were not connected. More recently and especially with the internet of things (IoT) this has dramatically changed. The speed of innovation has accelerated to a point where individual companies are no longer able to develop everything alone; systems are becoming increasingly complex and require large integrated technology solutions. Conformity assessment is more essential than ever to ensure that Standards are implemented correctly and outcomes can be trusted.

In today’s world companies are fiercely competitive and yet they have to collaborate more than ever before.

This cooperation is only possible when all actors work along the same generally agreed technical rules so that technologies are able to connect and broad solutions can be built, integrated and trusted.

This holds two key messages for us all:

  • Cooperation is now the rule not the exception
  • Nobody can do everything alone anymore

This directly impacts how we work in the IEC. To address increasing complexity we all need to reach out to others in- and outside the IEC and bring their expertise and know-how on board. Ensuring the suitability and use of IEC work are also important messages in the new IEC Masterplan, which will be launched in Vladivostok during the IEC General Meeting. 

With the acceleration in technology convergence, no single technical committee (TC) will be able to do everything alone anymore. Systems committees aim to support TCs in coordinating inputs and outcomes so as to develop systems deliverables that satisfy these new market requirements. The systems approach should be seen as an important enabler that will allow technical committees to output work that continues to satisfy real market needs.