Who can take part in the development of standards?
Standards are developed by committees made up of representatives of all interested parties. These can include authorities, but also companies or sector federations. Each participant has an equal say and all strive to reach a consensus.
Open to anyone
Both natural persons and public or private organisations can and may help develop standards relating to the fields in which they operate. The organisation will then delegate one or more representatives to sit on the standards committee. Examples of interested parties that may take part in developing standards include:
How the development of standards can benefit your organisation
There are numerous benefits to be gained by helping to develop standards:
- You will stay ahead of your competitors: anyone who helps create a standard helps shape the market;
- You will gain first-hand knowledge about technological developments and market trends;
- You will expand your influence and give your company a say in the development of standards for your sector;
- You will boost your credibility in the eyes of your stakeholders and customers;
- You will get the chance to build up a local, European and international professional network, as standards committees are the ideal place to make new contacts and exchange ideas.
Conditions for taking part
There are three conditions that you must meet to help formulate standards:
- If you will be taking part as a natural person, then you must be domiciled in Belgium. Legal entities or organisations wanting to participate must have their registered offices in Belgium.
- You must have a direct, current interest in the standard that you want to help to formulate and demonstrable knowledge of the subject.
- You should notify NBN that you wish to join a standards committee by registering your interest.
How much of my time will this take up?
The answer depends on the type of participation in the development process. If you participate in the discussions of the national mirror committee, it will normally take up 2 days a year. If you participate in the discussions at a European or international level, you’ll have to take these (extra) requirements into account:
- a full proficiency in English;
- time and means to attend meetings abroad;
- 2 to 3 days (on average) of preparation and follow-up for every gathering.
How much does it cost to join a committee?
The price for joining a committee for a year will depend on the sector operator coordinating the committee. On average, it takes 3 years to develop a new standard.
It costs a standard fee of 500 euros to join NBN committees, but the price is reduced to 400 euros for additional committees and as the year progresses. NBN also provides interesting discounts for a number of target groups including SMEs, academics and sector operators:
- -30% for SMEs (with a maximum of 50 employees);
- -50% for academics (universities and colleges where the provision of services is fixed by law or by decree);
- -50% for social actors who set themselves the statutory goal of defending the interests of employees, environmental interests or consumer interests;
- Participation is free of charge for sector operators (only for the persons who are responsible for standardisation activities);
- Participation is free of charge for authorities and public institutions from category A.
Your contribution to a standardisation committee is calculated based on the number of months you have been a member, as detailed in the table below.
You registered as
Cost to participate
Cost for every
Taking part as an expert
Would you like to take part in the standardisation process as an expert? Register to sit on one of our committees and help us to develop new standards based on your practical experience.
Want to find out more about joining a standards committee?
Send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 02 300 78 53.