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A01 STEEL, STAINLESS STEEL AND RELATED ALLOYS A04 IRON CASTINGS A05 METALLIC-COATED IRON AND STEEL PRODUCTS B01 ELECTRICAL CONDUCTORS B05 COPPER AND COPPER ALLOYS B07 LIGHT METALS AND ALLOYS C01 CEMENT C04 VITRIFIED CLAY PIPE C07 LIME AND LIMESTONE C09 CONCRETE AND CONCRETE AGGREGATES C11 GYPSUM AND RELATED BUILDING MATERIALS AND SYSTEMS C12 MORTARS AND GROUTS FOR UNIT MASONRY C13 CONCRETE PIPE C14 GLASS AND GLASS PRODUCTS C15 MANUFACTURED MASONRY UNITS C16 THERMAL INSULATION C17 FIBER-REINFORCED CEMENT PRODUCTS C18 DIMENSION STONE C21 CERAMIC WHITEWARES AND RELATED PRODUCTS C24 BUILDING SEALS AND SEALANTS C27 PRECAST CONCRETE PRODUCTS D01 PAINT AND RELATED COATINGS, MATERIALS, AND APPLICATIONS D04 ROAD AND PAVING MATERIALS D07 WOOD D08 ROOFING AND WATERPROOFING D09 ELECTRICAL AND ELECTRONIC INSULATING MATERIALS D11 RUBBER D14 ADHESIVES D18 SOIL AND ROCK D20 PLASTICS D35 GEOSYNTHETICS E05 FIRE STANDARDS E06 PERFORMANCE OF BUILDINGS E33 BUILDING AND ENVIRONMENTAL ACOUSTICS E36 ACCREDITATION & CERTIFICATION E57 3D IMAGING SYSTEMS E60 SUSTAINABILITY F01 ELECTRONICS F06 RESILIENT FLOOR COVERINGS F13 PEDESTRIAN/WALKWAY SAFETY AND FOOTWEAR F16 FASTENERS F17 PLASTIC PIPING SYSTEMS F33 DETENTION AND CORRECTIONAL FACILITIES F36 TECHNOLOGY AND UNDERGROUND UTILITIES G03 WEATHERING AND DURABILITY C14 GLASS AND GLASS PRODUCTS C21 CERAMIC WHITEWARES AND RELATED PRODUCTS D01 PAINT AND RELATED COATINGS, MATERIALS, AND APPLICATIONS D06 D09 ELECTRICAL AND ELECTRONIC INSULATING MATERIALS D10 PACKAGING D11 RUBBER D12 SOAPS AND OTHER DETERGENTS D13 TEXTILES D14 ADHESIVES D15 ENGINE COOLANTS AND RELATED FLUIDS D20 PLASTICS D21 POLISHES D31 LEATHER E12 COLOR AND APPEARANCE E18 SENSORY EVALUATION E20 TEMPERATURE MEASUREMENT E35 PESTICIDES, ANTIMICROBIALS, AND ALTERNATIVE CONTROL AGENTS E41 LABORATORY APPARATUS E53 ASSET MANAGEMENT E57 3D IMAGING SYSTEMS F02 FLEXIBLE BARRIER PACKAGING F05 BUSINESS IMAGING PRODUCTS F06 RESILIENT FLOOR COVERINGS F08 SPORTS EQUIPMENT, PLAYING SURFACES, AND FACILITIES F09 TIRES F10 LIVESTOCK, MEAT, AND POULTRY EVALUATION SYSTEMS F11 VACUUM CLEANERS F13 PEDESTRIAN/WALKWAY SAFETY AND FOOTWEAR F14 FENCES F15 CONSUMER PRODUCTS F16 FASTENERS F24 AMUSEMENT RIDES AND DEVICES F26 FOOD SERVICE EQUIPMENT F27 SNOW SKIING F37 LIGHT SPORT AIRCRAFT F43 LANGUAGE SERVICES AND PRODUCTS F44 GENERAL AVIATION AIRCRAFT A01 STEEL, STAINLESS STEEL AND RELATED ALLOYS A04 IRON CASTINGS A05 METALLIC-COATED IRON AND STEEL PRODUCTS A06 MAGNETIC PROPERTIES B01 ELECTRICAL CONDUCTORS B02 NONFERROUS METALS AND ALLOYS B05 COPPER AND COPPER ALLOYS B07 LIGHT METALS AND ALLOYS B08 METALLIC AND INORGANIC COATINGS B09 METAL POWDERS AND METAL POWDER PRODUCTS B10 REACTIVE AND REFRACTORY METALS AND ALLOYS C03 CHEMICAL-RESISTANT NONMETALLIC MATERIALS C08 REFRACTORIES C28 ADVANCED CERAMICS D01 PAINT AND RELATED COATINGS, MATERIALS, AND APPLICATIONS D20 PLASTICS D30 COMPOSITE MATERIALS E01 ANALYTICAL CHEMISTRY FOR METALS, ORES, AND RELATED MATERIALS E04 METALLOGRAPHY E07 NONDESTRUCTIVE TESTING E08 FATIGUE AND FRACTURE E12 COLOR AND APPEARANCE E13 MOLECULAR SPECTROSCOPY AND SEPARATION SCIENCE E28 MECHANICAL TESTING E29 PARTICLE AND SPRAY CHARACTERIZATION E37 THERMAL MEASUREMENTS E42 SURFACE ANALYSIS F01 ELECTRONICS F34 ROLLING ELEMENT BEARINGS F40 DECLARABLE SUBSTANCES IN MATERIALS F42 ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING TECHNOLOGIES G01 CORROSION OF METALS G03 WEATHERING AND DURABILITY D21 POLISHES D26 HALOGENATED ORGANIC SOLVENTS AND FIRE EXTINGUISHING AGENTS D33 PROTECTIVE COATING AND LINING WORK FOR POWER GENERATION FACILITIES E05 FIRE STANDARDS E27 HAZARD POTENTIAL OF CHEMICALS E30 FORENSIC SCIENCES E34 OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH AND SAFETY E35 PESTICIDES, ANTIMICROBIALS, AND ALTERNATIVE CONTROL AGENTS E52 FORENSIC PSYCHOPHYSIOLOGY E54 HOMELAND SECURITY APPLICATIONS E58 FORENSIC ENGINEERING F06 RESILIENT FLOOR COVERINGS F08 SPORTS EQUIPMENT, PLAYING SURFACES, AND FACILITIES F10 LIVESTOCK, MEAT, AND POULTRY EVALUATION SYSTEMS F12 SECURITY SYSTEMS AND EQUIPMENT F13 PEDESTRIAN/WALKWAY SAFETY AND FOOTWEAR F15 CONSUMER PRODUCTS F18 ELECTRICAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT FOR WORKERS F23 PERSONAL PROTECTIVE CLOTHING AND EQUIPMENT F26 FOOD SERVICE EQUIPMENT F32 SEARCH AND RESCUE F33 DETENTION AND CORRECTIONAL FACILITIES G04 COMPATIBILITY AND SENSITIVITY OF MATERIALS IN OXYGEN ENRICHED ATMOSPHERES D08 ROOFING AND WATERPROOFING D18 SOIL AND ROCK D19 WATER D20 PLASTICS D22 AIR QUALITY D34 WASTE MANAGEMENT D35 GEOSYNTHETICS E06 PERFORMANCE OF BUILDINGS E44 SOLAR, GEOTHERMAL AND OTHER ALTERNATIVE ENERGY SOURCES E47 E48 BIOENERGY AND INDUSTRIAL CHEMICALS FROM BIOMASS E50 ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT, RISK MANAGEMENT AND CORRECTIVE ACTION E60 SUSTAINABILITY F20 HAZARDOUS SUBSTANCES AND OIL SPILL RESPONSE F40 DECLARABLE SUBSTANCES IN MATERIALS G02 WEAR AND EROSION B01 ELECTRICAL CONDUCTORS C26 NUCLEAR FUEL CYCLE D02 PETROLEUM PRODUCTS, LIQUID FUELS, AND LUBRICANTS D03 GASEOUS FUELS D05 COAL AND COKE D19 WATER D27 ELECTRICAL INSULATING LIQUIDS AND GASES D33 PROTECTIVE COATING AND LINING WORK FOR POWER GENERATION FACILITIES E10 NUCLEAR TECHNOLOGY AND APPLICATIONS E44 SOLAR, GEOTHERMAL AND OTHER ALTERNATIVE ENERGY SOURCES E48 BIOENERGY AND INDUSTRIAL CHEMICALS FROM BIOMASS A01 STEEL, STAINLESS STEEL AND RELATED ALLOYS C01 CEMENT C09 CONCRETE AND CONCRETE AGGREGATES D02 PETROLEUM PRODUCTS, LIQUID FUELS, AND LUBRICANTS D03 GASEOUS FUELS D04 ROAD AND PAVING MATERIALS D15 ENGINE COOLANTS AND RELATED FLUIDS D18 SOIL AND ROCK D24 CARBON BLACK D35 GEOSYNTHETICS E12 COLOR AND APPEARANCE E17 VEHICLE - PAVEMENT SYSTEMS E21 SPACE SIMULATION AND APPLICATIONS OF SPACE TECHNOLOGY E36 ACCREDITATION & CERTIFICATION E57 3D IMAGING SYSTEMS F03 GASKETS F07 AEROSPACE AND AIRCRAFT F09 TIRES F16 FASTENERS F25 SHIPS AND MARINE TECHNOLOGY F37 LIGHT SPORT AIRCRAFT F38 UNMANNED AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS F39 AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS F41 UNMANNED MARITIME VEHICLE SYSTEMS (UMVS) F44 GENERAL AVIATION AIRCRAFT F45 DRIVERLESS AUTOMATIC GUIDED INDUSTRIAL VEHICLES D10 PACKAGING D11 RUBBER E31 HEALTHCARE INFORMATICS E35 PESTICIDES, ANTIMICROBIALS, AND ALTERNATIVE CONTROL AGENTS E54 HOMELAND SECURITY APPLICATIONS E55 MANUFACTURE OF PHARMACEUTICAL PRODUCTS E56 NANOTECHNOLOGY F02 FLEXIBLE BARRIER PACKAGING F04 MEDICAL AND SURGICAL MATERIALS AND DEVICES F29 ANESTHETIC AND RESPIRATORY EQUIPMENT F30 EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICES G04 COMPATIBILITY AND SENSITIVITY OF MATERIALS IN OXYGEN ENRICHED ATMOSPHERES C07 LIME AND LIMESTONE D14 ADHESIVES D16 AROMATIC HYDROCARBONS AND RELATED CHEMICALS D20 PLASTICS D26 HALOGENATED ORGANIC SOLVENTS AND FIRE EXTINGUISHING AGENTS D28 ACTIVATED CARBON D32 CATALYSTS E13 MOLECULAR SPECTROSCOPY AND SEPARATION SCIENCE E15 INDUSTRIAL AND SPECIALTY CHEMICALS E27 HAZARD POTENTIAL OF CHEMICALS E35 PESTICIDES, ANTIMICROBIALS, AND ALTERNATIVE CONTROL AGENTS F40 DECLARABLE SUBSTANCES IN MATERIALS
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PlainTalk

PlainTalk

The Road to Ulan Bator

ASTM International’s Partnerships Worldwide

I n 1972, when I first came to ASTM, inclusion was very much on everybody’s mind. It was believed that anyone “interested in or affected by” the outcome of a standard should be part of its development. Back then, active participation meant that technical experts had to be physically present at technical committee meetings, but there were people, like those in consumer groups and small businesses, who couldn’t afford the travel expenses. For them, meetings in cities like San Francisco and Chicago might as well have been held in Timbuktu.

ASTM decided to help. And with help those representatives came to technical committee meetings, bringing their needs and desires with them, which provided fuller consensus and produced more relevant standards. In 1972, there was no World Trade Organization, no Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade and no guidelines for the development of international standards. ASTM, however, was operating under the principles of inclusion, assistance, consensus, openness and relevance, terms that would not be institutionalized in a world body for 23 more years.

By the time the WTO was established in 1995, ASTM International standards had already become globally significant trading capital. Under WTO rules, international standards had to be good actors in the technical regulations that controlled trade, i.e., they could not create barriers to trade. In 2000, the WTO/TBT Committee issued guidelines — principles for the development of international standards for technical regulations. ASTM International was already operating under five of the six principles.1 A year later, it decided to embrace the sixth fully and formally by instituting its Memorandum of Understanding Program.

The sixth principle is the development dimension, the principle of inclusion. It declares that those who find participation in the development of international standards prohibitive should be helped. It is the same ASTM International principle of inclusion, expanded to developing nations.

The ASTM MOU Program creates a formal relationship between ASTM International and national standards bodies worldwide.2 Besides offering membership and the benefits of membership, ASTM International hosts standards professionals from MOU countries at its headquarters for approximately a month under its Standards Expert Program. ASTM International also sponsors visits by staff members of MOU standards bodies, where they gain insight into the structure and operations of ASTM’s committees and the standards development process. This year also marks the beginning of the MOU Technical Visitor Grant Program, which will expose technical experts to standards-related information and activities in a given sector of the expert’s choice. The program is intended to aid the equivalent sector or economy in the visitor’s nation by expanding technical fluency in the selected subject.

Individuals who join via our MOU partners are full members who participate in virtual meetings and submit ballots electronically. Often, one or two will be just down the hall at ASTM headquarters as part of these exchange programs, learning what it is like to be a part of the ASTM International management team. Others will have returned home, still absorbing the excitement of a committee week.

ASTM International currently has 77 MOUs with individual countries and three regional organizations, a testament to the value of ASTM standards and the desire of people around the world to be a part of the ASTM International community. There are 250 members from MOU countries on Committee D02 on Petroleum Products and Lubricants alone, and 737 ASTM standards in the petroleum area have been cited by 64 MOU signatories. Sixty-three MOU signatories have cited 1,749 ASTM infrastructure standards and there are 912 members participating on infrastructure-related committees from 72 MOU nations.

These facts are only the tip of the MOU iceberg. The daily interaction with MOU partners can’t be described in one article, and the program’s impact is so far-reaching that it is difficult to assess in mere numbers. But this we know for sure: It has increased ASTM’s international membership and the use of ASTM standards in MOU countries and in their trading partners. In all of the MOU countries, the ASTM International model of standards development is better understood, including the concept of government and private-sector equality. The empowerment derived from direct participation in the development of international standards is being realized by MOU technical experts for the first time. These are the people who will be driving forces behind the development of their economies, and that has got to be thrilling. We all win here.

Today, as I sit in my office in West Conshohocken, I am thinking about Ulan Bator, the capital of Mongolia, where the Mongolian Agency for Standardization and Metrology, an ASTM MOU partner, is located. Sitting high above sea level where the Trans-Siberian Railway connects with the Chinese rail system, Ulan Bator is, for me, the symbol of a remarkable journey and of the possibilities that still lie ahead for ASTM International. Today, ASTM is broader, richer and stronger for its MOU partners. ASTM standards are used in more countries now than at any time in its history, and it has grown in directions that were, until now, unforeseen and unknown. In 1972, no one even dreamed that there was a road from ASTM to Ulan Bator.

References

1. World Trade Organization principles for the development of international standards are transparency, openness, impartiality and consensus, effectiveness and relevance, coherence, and development dimension.

2. See www.astm.org/GLOBAL.

James A. Thomas

President, ASTM International

This article appears in the issue of Standardization News.