The IEEE SA Standards Board (SASB) held its September meeting series in Berlin, Germany. IEEE SA President Chuck Adams, President-Elect Steve Mills, and Treasurer Don Wright led teams of SASB members and IEEE staff on outreach meetings with several key German standards development organizations and government institutions.
As with previous outreaches in China and India, the sessions were devoted to informing these organizations about IEEE SA standardization practices and programs and to learn more about similar activities in Germany.
“There are numerous opportunities for the IEEE SA that are opening up in Europe,” said Mills. “At these meetings, there was expression of a desire to work with us to minimize the burden of each organization expending effort to create the same thing. Prior to this,” he said, “it was much more about competition.”
The first stop on the December trip was Deutsches Institut für Normung (DIN), also known as the German Institute for Standardization. DIN is the federally acknowledged national standards body that represents German interests in European and international standards organizations, where it does most of its work. DIN and the IEEE SA each presented the basics of their organization parted with plans to continue discussions about possible collaborations in 2011.
Later that day, a second meeting was held with a representative from the Bundesnetzagentur (BNetzA), the federal network agency that regulates the telecommunications sector in Germany. In addition to sharing the activities of the IEEE SA, the discussion focused on if certain topics — such as cyber security — are best handled through technology standards or through legal channels.
The IEEE SA also met with the German Commission for Electrical, Electronic & Information Technologies of DIN and VDE (DKE). DKE is responsible for the elaboration of standards and safety specifications covering the areas of electrical engineering, electronics and information technology in Germany.
This is the first time that IEEE and DKE met outside of meetings of the U.S. National Committee of the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC USNC). Both organizations explained their current activities and expressed interest in continuing to dialogue.
IEEE SA leadership also had the opportunity to meet with the European Patent Office to continue ongoing collaboration in the areas of green energy, in particular smart grids, and patents.
A final meeting in Berlin was held with the IEEE Region 8 Industry Relations Committee. Two conferences that Region 8 co-organized was discussed: EnergyCon and the Smart Grid World Forum, which took place 2 – 3 December 2010. The IEEE SA had visibility at both of these events. There were also discussions about the Standards Speakers Bureau and other educational programs, as well as the IEEE SA Corporate Program.