Chief Executive report
Earlier this month, Standards Australia participated in the annual ISO General Assembly held in Cape Town, South Africa.
The agenda was broad and future focused. There were many big issues discussed including trade, technology and the environmental sustainability and impact of these on the work of ISO. This included changing the way we work with and connect with our stakeholders, innovative approaches to standards development, and some bold work being done in a range of horizontal areas like artificial intelligence, blockchain and smart cities. A further theme discussed at the meeting was making sure our system is inclusive and enabling, something we have been focused on in Australia over the last 5 years.
The discussions and events of the week reinforced for the Australian delegation the importance of our transformation drive to ensure we are getting the right standards solutions to the market in the right time and in the right formats for the benefit of industries, governments and the community.
This month I also had the privilege of spending some time with our Nominating Organisations at our 2019 Nominating Organisation Forums. The feedback we get from these discussions is invaluable to us in helping to shape our agenda and focus on the priorities of our contributors. To all of you who joined us, thank you. In our seventh year of this initiative, I couldn’t have been more pleased at the quality of discussion and insights and genuine engagement with us as Australia’s national standards body.
—Adrian O’Connell, Chief Executive Officer
Highlighting safety standards to celebrate Electrical Safety Week
Electrical safety week for 2019 kicked off on 2 September serving as a timely reminder that safety around electricity is a 24/7 exercise. Given the complexity of the challenge, there is plenty of guidance out there for the community, professionals in the space, and students and apprentices learning the ropes.
“Among the huge amounts of safety guidance on all things electricity we find Australian and international standards across many different areas of the electrical sector,” said General Manager of Strategy and Engagement, Adam Stingemore.
Read more in our media release.
Road safety at the centre of auto glazing revision
With road safety a constant concern across the country, the glazing of windscreens on land vehicles is the focus of a revised standard. The revision aims to promote confidence within the auto glazing industry and by doing so, increase the trust of consumers in the sector.
This revision of AS 2080:2019 specifies methods of testing for windscreens and other glazing for power-driven land vehicles.
Read more in our media release.
Combatting the Black Economy report released
Earlier this month Standards Australia published the Combatting the black economy, enabling good practice report (PDF). The report explains the process of its development and considered the standards that could be developed within the space.
The report was produced as a result of a discussion paper, national forums and stakeholder consultations.
All things standards survey
We want to know what you think about standards – yes you!
Our Incubator team has developed a survey to find out how you utilise standards and to understand what we can do to improve our content distribution.
We are offering a first prize of $1000 or second prize of $500 to those who give the most detailed and relevant answers. If you’d like to share your opinion with us please complete the survey.
Submissions close 20 October 2019. Read the terms and conditions (PDF).
If you have any questions or would like to have a more in-depth discussion please feel free to email our friendly Incubator team at email@example.com. We look forward to hearing from you!
Phase 2 of Connect, our contributor portal, is now live. Launched earlier this year, it is our one-stop-shop for all the information our contributors need.
The newest update enables public access. Those who aren’t committee members can now use the portal to see active projects and also comment on draft standards.
Register for public access by visiting connect.standards.org.au.
What’s your view? Button batteries forum
Standards Australia will be hosting a forum on button batteries on 30 October.
Button batteries are found in a range of household products including children's toys and gadgets. These are easily accessible by all consumers including, but not limited to, vulnerable consumers and children. A key part of considering the development of a national standard is understanding the potential challenges, required regulations and views of various stakeholders.
The forum will run from 12 noon – 4pm. If you would like to attend, please register by 15 October 2019 on our Button Batteries Forum page.
Workshops for committee members
Are you a committee member and want to improve your knowledge of standards development? If yes, why not come along to one of our national workshops?
The two workshops below are a great opportunity to expand your standards knowledge and are free to attend!
How to write an Australian Standard
Benefits committee members
- Melbourne: Tue 8 and Wed 9 October 2019
- Sydney: Tue 15 and Thu 17 October 2019
- Brisbane: Wed 23 October 2019
Facilitating standards development
Benefits committee chairs
- Melbourne: Thu 10 October
- Sydney: Wed 16 and Thu 17 October 2019
- Brisbane: Tue 22 October 2019
Upcoming: Aged Standards Review 2019
We will be seeking feedback on a number of Aged Standards (documents over ten years old) to keep our catalogue contemporary and relevant. A list will be made available from 18 October 2019 until 20 December 2019 on our Aged Standards Review page.
IEC 1906 Awards
Three Australian standards experts are a select number of international awardees of the IEC 1906 Award for 2019. The IEC 1906 Award recognises the exceptional achievements of experts in the standards space.
Ivan Barron – Expert of the IEC Technical Committee 13, Electrical energy measurement and control
James Kennedy – Expert of IEC Technical Committee 56, Dependability
Gordana Ostojic – Expert of the IECEx – IEC System for Certification to Standards Relating to Equipment for Use in Explosive Atmospheres
You can find out more about the process and history of the award on the IEC website.
In conversation with Brooks Smith
Brooks Smith is the Lead Engineering Developer for ClearCalcs, a cloud-based engineering design platform seeking to standardise the way in which engineers perform their calculations. His expertise is specifically in structural engineering, in which he is both a Chartered Professional Engineer in Australia and a licensed Professional Engineer in the United States (Texas). Earlier in his career, he also worked as a forensic structural engineer investigating buildings including the Empire State Building, as a specialty research and development consultant in cold-formed steel product design, and as a research fellow investigating unrealised system reliability benefits in repetitive steel structures.
Standards Australia (SA): Why did you choose to get involved in the NEXTgen program?
Brooks Smith (BS): Developing calculators for structural building design has led me to become intimately familiar with the numerous Australian standards and United States standards cited in each country’s respective construction codes. Given that material behaviour is generally unaffected by political borders, it's fascinating to me seeing where the differences and similarities lie between the two country's standards.
The NEXTgen program gives me the opportunity to better understand standards development. I believe I can use the knowledge gained from NEXTgen and my experience in software development to provide a unique perspective on structural building standards. Upon completing the NEXTgen program I would like to help further improve Australian standards as a committee or working group member, or at least to help boost the voice of the software development community in standards development.
SA: What was your biggest takeaway from your first NEXTgen workshop at Standards Australia?
BS: I'd say that I had two big takeaways from the workshop: first, I didn't previously appreciate how much the guidelines for writing standards have developed. I'm pleased to see how much the standards are getting, well, standardised. Second, while standards development can appear as a looming bureaucracy, the development of Australian standards is more approachable than I had believed. I look forward to learning more about the process and entrenching myself in it!
SA: How would you sum up the standards work that you are currently involved in?
BS: While I'm not a member of any committee (yet!), I am actively seeking out structural committee meetings at which I can attend as an observer, and nominating organisations that could potentially sponsor me to join a committee.
In addition to actively participating in the NEXTgen program for the next several months, I'm authoring letters to some of the structural building committees. In the letters, I’m outlining clauses that our software development experience shows could use further clarification and clauses that statistical data on our platform shows that engineers may not be utilising as the committees intend.
SA: What does the future of standardisation look like?
BS: I believe the future will mean changes in both how standards are developed and how they're delivered. In development, as the world moves toward collaborative and cloud-based work environments, standards will become more responsive to the ways in which the standards are used. Committees will be able to reference data on which clauses are used and how they're used, allowing them to focus efforts upon high-demand clauses, identify missing edge cases, and tailor standards to what exactly the market needs.
In standards delivery, moving beyond paper books will allow standards to no longer be bound by tables and graphics that fit on an A4 page. Some committees could start developing or certifying calculators or mobile apps that are compliant with their standards. The possibilities for Australian Standards will only grow as new technology opens doors that didn't previously exist.
Standards Australia represents Australia on the two major international standards development bodies, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). Our activities are reported on our International Updates page.
Highlights from September (PDF):
- Establishment of new ISO technical committee on audit data services (ISO/TC 295)
- How the IEC has been preparing for 5G
- Members review regional trade agreements of Pacific Alliance, EAEU members and Viet Nam
Access the latest standards development news in your industry sector via our Sectors page.
Drafts open for comment
The public comment process provides an opportunity for stakeholders and members of the public to make valuable contributions. View draft standards currently open for comment.