By Russ Housley, Internet Engineering Task Force chair, and Steve Mills, IEEE Standards Association president

One of the hallmarks of the OpenStand principles is respectful cooperation among standards organizations, whereby each organization respects the autonomy, integrity, processes and intellectual property rules of the others, and the reason is simple: There is no value—for companies, for customers or for governments—in one standards organization performing additional processing on a high-quality standard from another. In fact, it can prove harmful to the original standard’s technical merit. Coordination and collaboration among standards organizations eliminates duplicated effort (and associated overhead of process that is ultimately shouldered by industry) and helps make the international standards landscape less complex and costly for all stakeholders.

In the modern paradigm of global, open standards that is defined by the OpenStand principles and that is taking root in varied technology spaces and industries, coordination and collaboration occurs across whatever traditional geographic and organizational boundary necessary to achieve the market’s needs.

Such coordination and collaboration are evidenced in the OpenStand movement itself, in fact. IEEE, the Internet Architecture Board (IAB), the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), Internet Society and World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) on 29 August 2012 announced that they have signed a statement affirming the importance of the jointly developed OpenStand principles, which are based on the effective and efficient standardization processes that have made the Internet and Web the premiere platforms for innovation and borderless commerce. Now fellow standards organizations, as well as governments and individual companies, are invited to join with these organizations at open-stand.org and support the principles.

Beyond cooperation among standards organizations, participation in the OpenStand modern standards paradigm requires:

  • adherence to fundamental principles of due process, broad consensus, transparency, balance and openness in standards development;
  • commitment by affirming standards organizations and their participants to collective empowerment by striving for standards that are chosen and defined based on technical merit, provide global interoperability, scalability, stability and resiliency; enable global competition; serve as building blocks for further innovation, and contribute to the creation of global communities that benefit humanity.
  • availability of standards specifications to all for implementation and deployment; and
  • voluntary adoption of standards, with success being determined by the market.

The Internet has provided the world with valuable lessons in terms of how to quickly yield standards that can be adopted broadly across geographic regions … standards that lower barriers to market entry and foster global competition … standards that support the rollout of sound and interoperable products to flexibly address business needs … standards that can keep up with the world’s rapid technological advances and safety, quality and interoperability demands. The organizations responsible for these standards, through their constituents, were and are driven by the momentum of the market to innovate and provide products for global consumers.

Informed precisely by the lessons learned through the Internet’s effective and efficient standardization processes, the OpenStand principles foster the borderless, modern paradigm for global, open standards that the world of borderless commerce requires. They convey the power of bottom-up collaboration in harnessing global creativity and expertise to the standards of any technology space that will underpin the modern economy moving forward.

By Russ Housley, Internet Engineering Task Force chair, and Steve Mills, IEEE Standards Association president

One could point to certain early, catalyst events—the introduction of the web browser and unleashing commercial use of the network, for example—that played key roles in setting the Internet revolution into motion. But, largely, the Internet’s rise has been a market-driven, organic explosion.

This phenomenon has been in evidence in the standards underlying the Internet. IEEE, the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) and World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) collectively represent a suite of standards that forms the foundation for the Internet in market to market around the globe. Together, these standards have been a key facilitator for the growth of a global economic and social model that has touched billions of lives. These global standards were developed with a focus toward technical excellence and deployed through collaboration of many participants from all around the world. The results have literally changed the world.

IEEE standards for the Internet’s physical connectivity, IETF standards for end-to-end global Internet interoperability and the W3C standards for the World Wide Web are not the only examples of the modern paradigm for global, open standards in action, however.

Universal Serial Bus (USB) is maintained and enhanced by the USB Implementers Forum, an organization of companies that want to implement USB in their products with high quality for their end customers. The USB standard is obviously market-driven and not confined by a concept of national boundaries.

Another example of such global standards is comprised by the suite of design-automation standards that is widely adopted across the globe, enabling a giant leap forward in our ability to define complex electronic solutions. Most, if not all, of the key standards in the electronic-design industry are market-driven. SystemVerilog, the Unified Power Format (UPF) and the Universal Verification Methodology (UVM)—among others that are critical to successful chip design flows and methodologies—are prime examples of the execution of the modern standards paradigm that the OpenStand principles define.

Another technology space that figures to demand such standards over the next decades is the global smart-grid effort, which seeks to augment regional facilities for electricity generation, distribution, delivery and consumption with a two-way, end-to-end network for communications and control.

The OpenStand principles convey the power of bottom-up collaboration to the standards of any technology space that will underpin the modern economy moving forward. The principles demand:

  • cooperation among standards organizations;
  • adherence to due process, broad consensus, transparency, balance and openness in standards development;
  • commitment to technical merit, interoperability, competition, innovation and benefit to humanity;
  • availability of standards to all; and
  • voluntary adoption.

IEEE, the Internet Architecture Board (IAB), IETF, Internet Society and W3C on 29 August 2012 announced that they have signed a statement affirming the importance of the jointly developed principles. Fellow standards organizations, as well as governments and individual companies, are invited to join with these organizations at open-stand.org and support the principles.

The modern paradigm defined by the OpenStand principles is proven in its ability to efficiently yield the kind of globally scoped standards that have the most significant impact in terms of creating global markets, fostering job creation and economic opportunity and yielding better products at more competitive prices. Such standards are essential to bringing about the world that humanity desires and figure to playing even greater roles in industry to industry and market to market around the world in the years ahead.

By Russ Housley, Internet Engineering Task Force chair, and Steve Mills, IEEE Standards Association president

Global standards have been driving innovation, contributing to the growth of markets and protecting the health and safety of workers and the general public for centuries. This key function of standards is not changing. Today, more than ever, the world needs global standards to enable the creation of products and services that will be implemented and used by customers globally. Such global standards have the most significant impact for industry, in terms of creating global markets. Consumers benefit from improved interoperability, greater simplicity and more competitive prices. Global standards are essential to bringing about the world that humankind desires.

What has changed is the increasing globalization of markets and how these markets drive the standards dynamic. Because industry today exists in an effectively borderless world of commerce, a borderless standards paradigm is needed, too. Globalization, together with the rapid advancement of technology and intensifying time-to-market demands, have caused industry to seek more efficient ways to define global standards, which, in turn, help expand the global markets.

The “OpenStand” principles—based on the effective and efficient standardization processes that have made the Internet and Web the premiere platforms for innovation and borderless commerce—foster the efficient, technical-merit-driven and open modern paradigm of global standardization that borderless commerce requires.

IEEE, the Internet Architecture Board (IAB), Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), Internet Society and World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) on 29 August 2012 announced that they have signed a statement affirming the importance of the jointly developed OpenStand principles, establishing a modern paradigm for global, open standards. The OpenStand principles demand:

  • cooperation among standards organizations;
  • adherence to due process, broad consensus, transparency, balance and openness in standards development;
  • commitment to technical merit, interoperability, competition, innovation and benefit to humanity;
  • availability of standards to all; and
  • voluntary adoption.

The OpenStand principles strive to encapsulate the successful Internet standardization model and create a more agile standards-development paradigm—one that is more driven by technical merit—for the contemporary, global economy’s gamut of technology spaces and markets.

In the established and well-known traditional model of standards, countries drive adoption by bodies with national representation. These bodies are formed by treaties or other inter-government agreements, and standards are ratified by representatives from the countries that signed the treaties or agreements—often via a one-nation/one-vote model. This model aligned with the way that markets historically have been organized around the world.

With the rise of borderless commerce, however, new requirements have emerged. In response, the OpenStand principles strive to define the complementary model of standards development and adoption that has grown up around the Internet and other technology areas. In this modern paradigm for global, open standards, it is the economics of global markets—fueled by technological innovation—that drive global deployment of standards. International recognition of a particular standard is determined organically by the standard’s adoption in actual products and services that are used around the world.

The voice of the international marketplace grows louder. When the market itself is empowered to choose the appropriate solutions and decide which standards are relevant, those markets become self-sustaining and drive innovation in technology, products and services. Consumers benefit from better products, improved interoperability, greater simplicity and more competitive prices. Industry realizes a globally scaled marketplace for its products and services. In these ways, the OpenStand principles benefit humanity.

Fellow standards organizations, as well as governments and individual companies, are invited to join with IEEE, the IAB, IETF, Internet Society and W3C on the OpenStand Web site and support the principles. Please stand with us.