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What is a Standard?

Standards are documents setting out specifications, procedures and guidelines. They are designed to ensure products, services and systems are safe, reliable and consistent.

They are based on industrial, scientific and consumer experience and are regularly reviewed to ensure they keep pace with new technologies.
They cover everything from consumer products and services, construction, engineering, business, information technology, human services to energy and water utilities, the environment and much more.
There are three kinds of standards: international, regional, and national.
  • International standards are developed by ISO, IEC, and ITU. Countries can adopt these standards directly for their national use. Wherever possible, Standards Australia embraces the development and adoption of international standards.
  • Regional standards are prepared by a specific region, such as the European Union, which develops EN standards. Similarly, joint Australian/New Zealand standards can be considered regional standards.
  • National standards can be developed by a national standards body (like Standards Australia) or other accredited bodies. Standards developed under the brand of Australian Standard® are developed within Australia or are adoptions of international standards.
There are other technical documents that provide guidance and assistance on implementing Standards, including Handbooks and Technical Reports. For more information on the various Standards Australia products, please refer to our Standardisation Guide SG-003: Standards and Other Publications.