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ISO in figures

by Roger Frost on
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ISO in figures

In 2011, references to ISO and its standards on Internet media sites increased by 128 937 compared to 2010 to reach a total of 467 830 – a rise of 38 %. But how many people have an idea of the size of ISO and its standards development operations? To answer such questions, ISO has just published ISO in figures.

This new edition of the four-page leaflet reveals that at the end of 2011, ISO comprised a network of national standards bodies of 163 countries.

The job of developing voluntary ISO International Standards for business, government and society was being carried out by a total of 3 335 technical bodies, includes 224 technical committees, each of which addresses a specific sector of business or technology.

In 2011, ISO published 1 208 new or revised standards, bringing the total number of current standards in the ISO catalogue at the end of the year to 19 023.

An indication of the demand for new ISO standards is that during 2011, 1 419 new projects for ISO standards were registered, raising the number of items in the work programme to 4 007.

Much of ISO's work of developing standards is now carried out electronically, both to increase efficiency and also to cut the financial and environmental impact of travel. At the same time, face-to-face meetings retain their importance. In 2011, 1 580 technical meetings were held in 50 countries. On average, 15 ISO technical meetings were held each working day, somewhere in the world.

Thirty-eight ISO national member bodies provided the administrative and technical services for the committees developing standards – a full-time staff equivalent to 500 persons. Coordination of the worldwide activities of ISO was carried out by a staff of 151 people from 20 countries at the ISO Central Secretariat in Geneva.

The operational cost of running the committee secretariats was estimated at 140 million Swiss francs, financed by the 38 member bodies holding these secretariats. The operational costs of the ISO Central Secretariat was 37 million Swiss francs, of which 55 % was financed through membership fees and 45 % through other revenue sources, including sales of publications and income from services.

ISO Secretary-General Rob Steele comments: "While these figures are useful in providing an idea of the size of the ISO system and its operations, the most important are those that reflect the priority we give to developing standards that meet the needs of our customers, users and stakeholders."

ISO in figures

ISO in figures

for the year 2011

ISO in figures, published in English and French, is available free of charge from the ISO Central Secretariat through the ISO Store or by contacting the Marketing, Communication & Information department. It can also be obtained from ISO national member institutes (see the complete list with contact details). The brochure can also be downloaded here above.