ANSI - American National Standards Institute
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International Experts Gather for ISO Meeting on Conformity Assessment

New York, Oct 18, 2011

On October 5, more than 90 international experts gathered in Montreux, Switzerland, for a meeting hosted by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) to exchange information and insights on the role of conformity assessment as a vital component of world trade.

Conformity assessment encompasses the processes used to demonstrate that a product, service, management system, person, or organization meets specified requirements. Conformity assessment is an important component of international trade and global supply chains, and provides support for government regulation.

An introductory session run by Olivier Peyrat, chair of ISO’s Conformity Assessment Committee (CASCO), and Sean MacCurtain, head of conformity assessment, ISO Central Secretariat, familiarized participants with recent issues raised at the ISO CASCO plenary.

In a session focused on best practices for establishing and operating national mirror committees, participants discussed how to best identify and engage stakeholders in support of ISO’s consensus-based standards development process.

Randy A. Dougherty and Alister Dalrymple, co-convenors of CASCO working group (WG) 21, led a tutorial on changes to ISO/ International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) 17021:2011, Conformity assessment – Requirements for bodies providing audit and certification of management system, which was published in February 2011.

Parallel sessions were also held on five of the ISO CASCO WGs. Marcus Schmid, convenor of WG 31, spoke on the revision of the existing ISO/IEC 17020:1998, General criteria for the operation of various types of bodies performing inspection. Laurent Camberou, convenor of WG 33, presented on ISO/IEC Technical Specification (TS) 17022, Conformity assessment – Requirements and recommendations for the content of a third-party audit report on management systems. Christian Priller, convenor of WG 29, spoke about ISO/IEC Guide 65:1996, General requirements for bodies operating product certification systems and the future ISO/IEC 17065, Conformity assessment – Requirements for bodies certifying products, processes and services. Christian Priller on behalf of Ian Cleare, Convenor of WG 32, presented the revision of ISO/IEC Guide 67, Conformity assessment – Fundamentals of product certification. Cynthia Woodley, convenor of WG 30, updated attendees on revisions to ISO/IEC 17024, Conformity assessment – General requirements for bodies operating certification of persons. [see related news item]

Kevin McKinley, ISO Deputy Secretary-General, paid tribute to Mr. Peyrat for his contributions as ISO CASCO chair; his term will come to an end on December 31, 2011. He will be succeeded by Lane Hallenbeck, vice president for accreditation services at the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). [see related news item]