International Standards and Conformity Assessment for all electrical, electronic and related technologies


Foster innovation

Foster Innovation

Innovation is widely recognized as a key element for competitiveness and economic growth. In an ever more competitive world economy, success is increasingly being determined by the ability of businesses and societies to be innovative.

Innovation and the role of standardization

The importance and role of standardization in relation to innovation is recognized by the Council Conclusions in relation to the European Commission Communication
COM(2008)133 'Towards an increased contribution from standardization to innovation in Europe'.

Common European standards are an important factor in creating an effective single market. Thanks to their continuous support to the Internal Market, standards can play a major role in promoting innovative products and services by providing legal security for innovative companies, creating large scale markets and building confidence among consumers. Hence standards can be considered an important driver of innovation in Europe.

Innovation through standardization leads to multiple benefits such as the improvement of the quality of products, the opening of new markets for these new products that are thus created, and the expansion of the product range.

CEN and CENELEC consider innovation as a key objective as well, promoting standardization as a mean to support a culture of innovation in Europe. Standards play a major role in promoting innovative products and services by facilitating access to markets, reducing costs, enabling interoperability between new and existing products, services and processes, creating large scale markets, building confidence among consumers and disseminating research results.

CEN-CENELEC activities

The CEN-CENELEC Management Centre has established an Innovation Directorate in order to promote standardization and its benefits in those sectors and markets that do not use it today. This includes assistance to stakeholders for starting new standardization activities, where relevant. That assistance also extends, case by case, to research proposals encompassing a standardization package.

Moreover, the CEN and CENELEC Technical Boards agreed in October 2008 on the creation of a joint strategic Working Group to address Standardization, Innovation and Research (STAIR). CEN-CENELEC STAIR will give strategic advice to the two Technical Boards in order to reach an integrated approach and develop the links between research and innovation and standardization.