Smart city collaboration announced by global standards bodies

Major standards organisations from around the world have agreed to work together to accelerate and better align smart city standardisation work.

Following the World Smart City Forum, which was held in Singapore in July, representatives of the IEC, ISO, ITU, IEEE, CEN, CENELEC and ETSI held a meeting to discuss how they can work together for the greater good of cities and citizens.

The meeting was organised by the IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission), in partnership with the ISO (International Organisation for Standardisation) and ITU (International Telecommunication Union). These three organisations publish International Standards that provide technical tools to enable the integration of city services and technologies.

Participants discussed gaps, where standards are needed but work is not yet advanced; overlaps, where different organisations may be active; and how the standards world can collaborate.

Commenting on the plans for greater collaboration, Frans Vreeswijk, IEC general secretary and CEO, said: “We are excited about the prospect of more efficient, inclusive standards development for cities. Cities are complex, multi-dimensional systems of systems. No single standards organisation will be able to provide everything cities need.

“Here, as elsewhere, broad collaboration is required. In this context, sometimes one organisation will lead an effort and at other times it will share its expertise while another one leads.”

Kevin McKinley, acting ISO secretary-general, added: “We now have a good foundation on which we can build, and at ISO we look forward to future cooperation with our partner organisations. This will mean ISO members engaging even more with cities, planners and other stakeholders, to serve their needs and increase awareness of the value International Standards can bring to the development of smart cities.”

Over the coming months the organisations will work together to develop a framework for cooperation in order to optimise outcomes and reduce duplication, wasted time and expense, the IEC said. A follow-up meeting is planned for 2017.

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