On 14 October, the members of IEC, ISO and ITU celebrate ‘World Standards Day’, paying tribute to the collaborative efforts of the thousands of experts worldwide who develop the voluntary technical agreements that are published as international standards.
This year World Standards Day topic is ‘Standards make cities smarter’. The 21st century is known as the century of the cities. According to forecasts from the United Nations, the world’s population is set to hit 9.7 billion by 2050, with 70% of those people living in cities. Today 78% of European citizens live in cities and 85% of the European GDP is generated in cities. By 2050, 85% of the population of Europe is forecast to be living in urban areas. The development of sustainable and smart urban living is thus becoming a key societal challenge. However, cities are not always fully aware of what standards can offer, as they may not be familiar with the value that voluntary standards bring and how to get involved in the standardization system. This is why CEN, CENELEC and ETSI (the three recognized European Standards Organization), with the support of the European Commission, are organizing a smart city-dedicated event on 19 October in Brussels: “Cities set Standards to be Smarter and more Sustainable”.
At European level, a CEN-CENELEC-ETSI Sector Forum on ‘Smart and Sustainable Cities and Communities’ was created to strategically advise and coordinate European standardization activities related to Smart and Sustainable Cities and Communities. Indeed Standards for smart cities are to be found in many standardization fields such as energy, green vehicles, smart grids, smart meters, just to mention a few. The Internet Of Things (IoT) is high on our agenda. In the future, we will need to speak more closely and timely with cities. Our event on 19 October is a first important step in that direction.