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International Organization for Standardization (ISO)

The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is an international non-governmental organization composed of national standards bodies. It develops and publishes a wide range of proprietary, industrial and commercial standards and is composed of representatives from various national standards bodies.

What does International Organization for Standardization (ISO) mean?

The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is an international standards body that promotes proprietary, industrial and commercial standards worldwide. The organization is currently composed of representatives from over 160 national standards organizations and is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland. The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) has been in existence since 1947.

The abbreviated name of the organization - ISO - is not an acronym, but is derived from the ancient Greek word ísos, meaning equal or equivalent. Since the organization would have different acronyms in different languages, the founders of the organization decided to call it by the short form ISO.

ISO publishes international standards (ISO standards), but also certain other documents related to standardization, including technical reports, technical specifications and guides.

Uniform standards make it easier for companies to access new markets and for buyers to directly compare the goods and services offered by different suppliers. Standards can also help protect the end users of products and services.

How many ISO standards are there?

Currently, there are more than 20,000 ISO standards covering a wide range of topics, including industrial goods, agriculture, healthcare and technology.

Cost of ISO standards

With the exception of a few standards, ISO standards are generally not available for free, but must be purchased.

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