The European Commission has adopted recommendations on the Codes of Practice for standardisation in the European Research Area. The recommendations support the implementation of the Council Recommendation on the guiding principles for Knowledge Valorisation which were announced in December 2022.
The code of practice helps with the successful integration of R&I activities with standardisation. It identifies good practices and addresses R&I activities regardless of the technology area. It targets R&I actors within a wide range of technology readiness levels from terminologies and concepts, through testing to interoperability and performance.
The code of practice on standardisation is also key to the objectives of the EU Standardisation Booster - HSbooster.eu. Its observations and recommendations greatly influenced the booster and forms the basis of types of support that projects can receive through the booster’s services.
Raising awareness of the benefit of standardisation within a research project is particularly highlighted, in the recommendations, as a means to valorise project results. Establishing a standardisation strategy early on in the project and liaising with Standardisation Development Organisations is an essential part of this. The code of practice states that “the earlier R&I actors engage in the standards development process, integrated within their overall R&I process, the sooner they can bring their standards-informed innovations to competitive global markets, resulting in greater value and rewards.” By setting out a clear strategy and plan early on in the project, beneficiaries can align on objectives and even form alliances around standardisation. Links to Technical Committees or experience in standardisation within consortia can also be key for a project to successfully contribute to standardisation effectively. Timing is also impotant and there is great potential from researchers engaging in the early stages of standardisation activities within their projects. This is a great way for them to gain important knowledge, establish new networks and contriute to EU and international standards.
The Booster’s services are designed to support projects in this path to improving how they approach and contribute to standardisation. Already over 70 projects are already benefitting from the booster. In a simple first-come first-served process, projects can apply online stating the type of support they would like. HSbooster.eu partners then match the application to an appropriate standards expert who then connects-up with the project directly. Support is then delivered through up to four conference calls over a period of 3 months (maximum).
This can include supporting projects to understand the standards landscape, how, where and when to contribute to a Technical Committee and guiding them in establishing clear and measured objectives on standardisation. Through Booster services, the experts can be instrumental in facilitating contact with specific Technical Committees. The EC recommendation also urges projects to seek contact with CEN-CENCENELC and ETSI.
Training and education in standardisation is another key feature of the code of practice and an area which the Booster addresses with its Standardisation Training Academy which will be launched this month. The Academy offer online training modules which are available to projects that apply. Here we look to build confidence and skills within consortia, making them better equipped to understand plan their standardisation strategies.
In short, the recommendations adopted by the European Commission are an essential part of the implementation of the European Standardisation Strategy and a guiding light for the HSbooster.eu project and services.
Read the full EC announcement here