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Project Development Stages

The Standards Australia standards development process is based on three internationally recognised principles:

  • Openness and transparency of process
  • Consensus
  • Balance of representation

Find out about the stages in the development of an Australian Standard:


(i)     Proposal for a new or revised Standard


A formal proposal comes from the Australian community, often from industry associations or government departments. Standards Australia does not initiate new Standard projects - it responds to requests from external stakeholders. A solid proposal must demonstrate Net Benefit and stakeholder support before Standards Australia considers allocating resources to the project.


(ii)    Project approval


Projects are selected based on the strength of the Net Benefit case; clear and well-defined scope of work; stakeholder consultation and support; and above all the availability of Standards Australia resources. 


The Standards Development and Accreditation Committee (SDAC) then approves the portfolio of projects that can be supported with available resources and within defined timeframes.


NOTE: For more details on the assessment process and criteria, refer to the Standards Australia Guide - Project Prioritisation Process and Criteria.


(iii)   Formation of a Technical Committee


Once your proposal has been approved, it then becomes a project assigned to the relevant Technical Committee. Each committee is led by an appointed Chair. The Chair is supported by a Committee Secretary, responsible for co-ordinating committee work and ensuring the draft Standard follows the basic principles of standardisation.


Where no suitable Technical Committee exists, the project proponent needs to indicate a suggested new Committee and also show that the proposal has the support of key stakeholders.


(iv)  Drafting of the Standard


The Committee meets to set a drafting schedule, coordinate activities and establish consensus on the technical content of the draft. A new Australian Standard can only be developed if there is no appropriate international standard already available. All Australian Standards must not act as a barrier to trade, competition, or innovation. Committees must verify the above two conditions before proceeding to develop a new Australian Standard.


(v)   Public Comment


This stage ensures that the broader community has an opportunity to review the content of a standard prior to its completion. All draft standards are made available to the public for comment for nine weeks. For simple adoptions of International Standards this period is six weeks and is conducted in parallel with the Committee Ballot process. For a full list of drafts available for public comment please click here.


(vi)  Consideration of Comment


All comments from the public are considered in detail by the committee and, if necessary, further drafting is undertaken to accommodate responses to the comments. 


(vii) Committee Ballot process


The committee then votes on the final draft. For the standard to be published, the committee must reach consensus on the content of the document.


(viii) Publication of Standard
Final approval of a standard is given by, or on behalf of, the Standards Development and
Accreditation Committee (SDAC) and the standard is ready for publication.