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NIST Publishes Guidance on Federal Conformity Assessment Activities


The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has published the final version of 15 CFR Part 287 Guidance on Federal Conformity Assessment Activities. Section 12 of the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act (NTTAA) of 1995 directs NIST to “coordinate technical standards activities and conformity assessment activities of Federal, State, and local governments with private sector technical standards activities and conformity assessment activities, with the goal of eliminating unnecessary duplication and complexity in the development and promulgation of conformity assessment requirements and measures.” 

NIST originally issued the guidance found in 15 CFR 287 on August 10, 2000, in response to Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circular A-119 (February 10, 1998) directing the Secretary of Commerce to issue guidance to Federal agencies to ensure effective coordination of Federal conformity assessment activities.

The January 2016 revision to OMB Circular A-119 re-emphasizes NIST’s role in issuing guidance to agencies as well as Federal agencies' responsibilities with respect to conformity assessment. 

NIST has revised this guidance to reflect development in conformity assessment concepts and the evolution in Federal agency strategies and coordination in using and relying on conformity assessment. 

Access the Guidance on Federal Conformity Assessment Activities via the Federal Register.


Jana Zabinski

Senior Director, Communications & Public Relations


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Beth Goodbaum

Journalist/Communications Specialist


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