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Quality infrastructure is centre stage at UNECE WP.6 for World Metrology Day

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20 May marks the World Metrology Day, celebrating the international system of units, which coincides with the anniversary of the signing of the Metre Convention in 1875. This treaty created the International Bureau of Weights and Measures (BIPM) which coordinate international metrology and the development of internationally recognized systems of measurement. 

The UNECE Working Party on Regulatory Cooperation and Standardization Policies (WP.6) is dedicated to supporting the metrology community and the different aspects of quality infrastructure. The Recommendation K on Metrological Assurance of Conformity Assessment and Testing was first developed in 1988 and revised in 2008. With technological advances and the updates in metrology, WP.6 launched several months ago a project to update this recommendation and to provide guidance on how best it can be applied. The project team has now released a version for a public review until 16 June (more available on the WP.6 Projects page, under the “Public Review” tab). 

In support of quality infrastructure, WP.6 is organizing a forum of all its subgroups from 22 to 26 May. This event will launch on 22 May with a conference on “Back to basics of quality infrastructure” with prominent speakers on metrology, standardization, market surveillance, conformity assessment, and risk management. This conference will be preceded by a presentation on the current work within WP.6 on artificial intelligence and the regulatory compliance challenges products with such embedded technology pose. 

There will also be specific events on regulatory cooperation on 23 May and best practices in market surveillance on 26 May. The experts on education of standards will also discuss future developments on 26 May. 

A specific focus on risk management in regulatory systems will take place on 25 May, when border regulators and product compliance regulators will present their current best practices in integrated risk management. The leadership of the Group of Experts on Risk Management in Regulatory Systems (GRM) will reflect on these best practices, relate them back to the existing recommendations within WP.6 and identify areas for future work. A special focus will be brought to integrated risk management using single window systems. 

The Team of Specialists on Gender-Responsive Standards (GRS) will review best practices and challenges in implementing gender action plans related to standards development on 24 May. WP.6 has been champion of gender-responsive standards since 2016. The GRS plans to reflect on how gender considerations in standardization relate back to more global gender policies within governments and explore potential new topics for guidance. They also plan to launch a new publication on “Why gender-responsive standards are better for everyone” at this event. 

On the occasion of World Metrology Day, WP.6 invites everyone to reflect upon the benefits we have been able to enjoy thanks to the international system of units and standards. Join us next week from 22 to 26 May as WP.6 highlights some of the main achievements in quality infrastructure and look towards the future. 


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