ISO is an independent, non-governmental organization made up of members from the national standards bodies of 161 countries. Our members play a vital role in how we operate, meeting once a year for a General Assembly that decides our strategic objectives.
We have a Central Secretariat in Geneva, Switzerland, that coordinates the system. Operations at the Central Secretariat are directed by the Secretary General.
The General Assembly
The General Assembly is the ultimate authority for our work. This annual meeting is attended by our members and our Principal Officers, including the President, the Vice-President (policy), the Vice President (technical management), the Vice-President (finance), the Treasurer and the Secretary General.
The ISO Council takes care of most governance issues. It meets twice a year and is made up of 20 member bodies, the ISO Officers and the Chairs of Policy Development Committees (CASCO, COPOLCO, DEVCO). Membership to the Council is open to all member bodies and rotates to make sure it is representative of the member community.
Under the Council are a number of bodies that provide guidance and management on specific issues.
President’s Committee shall advise Council and oversee the implementation of the
decisions taken by
the Council and the General Assembly.
CASCO - provides guidance on conformity assessments
COPOLCO - provides guidance on consumer issues
DEVCO - provides guidance on matters related to developing countries
Council Standing Committees - advise on financial and strategic matters
Ad hoc Advisory Committees - can be established to advance the goals and strategic objectives of the organization
The management of the technical work is taken care of by the Technical Management Board. This body is also responsible for the technical committees that lead standard development and any strategic advisory boards created on technical matters.
ISO Central Secretariat
The General Assembly and the Council map out ISO’s strategic direction. However, day to day operations are run by the Central Secretariat in Geneva, Switzerland. The Central Secretariat is under the direction of the Secretary General, who is also one of our Principal Officers.
Click on the image below to enlarge the diagram of ISO's structure