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 Thursday, 22 December 2011

Geneva, 21 December - Key standards (ITU-T Recommendations) on smart grid have been approved at a recent ITU SG 15 meeting.

Recommendations ITU-T G.9955 and G.9956 define three international next generation narrowband powerline communications (NB-PLC) standards. The approved family of standards will enable cost-effective smart grid applications such as distribution automation, diagnostic and fault location, smart metering, demand response, energy management, smart appliances, grid-to-home communications and advanced recharging systems for electric vehicles.

The standards are an ideal platform for smart grid applications because of their use of power lines as a communications medium which is under the direct and complete control of power utilities.

Full press release

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Thursday, 22 December 2011 11:27:20 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, 20 December 2011

ITU is inviting applications for the post of Chief of the Operations and Planning Department, Telecommunication Standardization Bureau (TSB), at ITU headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland.

Standards from the ITU are at the heart of modern information and communications technologies (ICTs). For more information see:

The Telecommunication Standardization Bureau (TSB) provides essential logistical support to ITU-T’s 10 Study Groups including electronic working facilities and meeting management. It also manages promotion, workshops, membership, documents, finance, the website etc. It is the body responsible for providing cohesion to ITU-T’s standards making process.

The successful candidate should have an excellent knowledge of the ICT industry and, in particular, the ICT standardization landscape. Familiarity with ITU-T rules and procedures, its meeting activities and its products would be an advantage, as would previous involvement in the development of standards.

The senior management level (Director level in the United Nations system) post demands strong organizational skills and diplomacy. Under the general direction of the TSB’s Director, the incumbent will plan and coordinate the activities of the Operations and Planning Department; a role conferring, inter alia, the following responsibilities: Establishing work plans for the Department and Services under his/her supervision; directing the delivery of technical editing and publications services; directing the TSB’s IT programme and the development of new electronic services for the ITU-T membership and website; directing the delivery of a range of administrative services (operational planning, budget/finance services, Human Resources, procurement, meetings, logistics etc.); and organizing the delivery of support to the TSB’s assemblies, meetings and workshops, and to its major high-level global and regional events. The incumbent will also be expected to provide authoritative advice to the Director and the Deputy to the Director on all the matters for which he/she is responsible, and will contribute to TSB strategy and policy through their participation in the TSB management committee.

An attractive package of salary (approximately USD 213,046-244,756 with dependants; USD 196,923-224,263 without dependants [Net of Tax]) plus international allowances and benefits is offered (subject to eligibility).

The closing date for applications is 31 January 2012.

A detailed vacancy notice and application form including remuneration can be downloaded at Applications using the form must be sent to or by post to ITU Human Resources Administration Division, Place des Nations, CH-1211, Geneva 20, Switzerland.

Applications must reach ITU by the closing date.

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Tuesday, 20 December 2011 12:49:29 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

ITU is inviting applications for the post of Programme Coordinator, Telecommunication Standardization Bureau (TSB), at ITU headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland.

Lack of conformity and interoperability of ICT equipment is a major concern, especially in developing countries. Ensuring the interoperability of ICT products and services is one of the founding principles of the ITU.

The successful candidate should have an excellent knowledge of the ICT industry and, in particular, the ICT standardization landscape. Familiarity with ITU-T rules and procedures, its meeting activities and its products would be an advantage, as would previous involvement in the development of standards.

The management level (Professional level in the United Nations system) post demands strong organizational, technical and inter-personal skills. Under the direction of the Head of the Workshops and Promotions Division, the incumbent will be tasked with coordinating the TSB’s Conformity and Interoperability programme; a role demanding the design and implementation of the programme, as well as the provision of expert technical input and advice where necessary. The incumbent will also be responsible for the coordination of events, seminars and workshops relating to conformance assessment and interoperability testing, and will be required to administer the programme’s budget and reporting procedures.

An attractive package of salary (approximately USD 124,047-166,220 with dependents; USD 115,789-154,533 without dependents [Net of Tax]) plus international allowances and benefits is offered (subject to eligibility).

The closing date for applications is 31 January 2012.

A detailed vacancy notice and application form can be downloaded at Applications using the form must be sent to or by post to ITU Human Resources Policies Division, Place des Nations, CH-1211, Geneva 20, Switzerland.

Applications must reach ITU by the closing date.

Tuesday, 20 December 2011 12:47:35 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Saturday, 17 December 2011

Key standards (ITU-T Recommendations) on a technology (MPLS-TP) required by telecoms operators to increase network efficiency while also reducing capex and opex costs have been approved (or attained first level approval) at a recent ITU meeting.

MPLS-TP refers to extensions to the IETF's MPLS protocol developed in cooperation with the IETF. MPLS can carry packets of different types, allowing telecom operators to offer private connections as well as IP services. Many network operators expect MPLS-TP to work under the same principles as longstanding ITU transport network technologies like SDH and OTN. MPLS-TP provides network operators with a reliable packet-based technology the operation of which aligns with current organizational processes and large-scale work procedures. Its deployment may reduce the need for layer 3 routing in an operator’s network.

Another important draft standard in the field has been forwarded to ITU’s quadrennial World Telecommunication Standardization Assembly (WTSA-12) in Dubai next year. This provides an Ethernet based protocol for operations, administration and management (OAM) for Transport MPLS (MPLS-TP). The delay in approval follows the breakdown of a deal brokered by the Japanese administration in November. The compromise proposed was intended to address concerns expressed by IETF, following a series of previous setbacks, detailed here and here. Unfortunately the IETF were unable to deliver one key element of the proposal, the ACh codepoint which contributed to four national delegations vetoing the standard.

Malcolm Johnson, Director, Telecommunication Standardization Bureau, ITU: “I would like to thank Japan for its great effort as a neutral party to find a compromise that took into account IETF’s concerns. It is clear that the majority of the world’s ICT industry and governments supports this standard. It is a practical solution demanded by operators around the globe. I am hopeful that IETF will be able to assign the ACh codepoint before WTSA-12 which should allow the standard to be approved by consensus. ITU has a tradition of working by consensus but this is dependent on delegations being willing to compromise.”

At the close of its December meeting Study Group 15 repeated its request to the IETF to provide an ACh codepoint for the Ethernet based OAM protocols. This request is in line with ITU’s continued commitment to a collegial working environment for ICT standards development.

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Saturday, 17 December 2011 06:56:52 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, 13 December 2011

The first meeting of a collaboration on ITS communication standards.
The first meeting of a collaboration on international communication standards for intelligent transport systems (ITS) will take place on Wednesday, 14 December, at ITU Headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. The meeting is open and remote participation is offered.
Industry experts who gathered for the World Standards Cooperation's Fully Networked Car event at the Geneva Motor Show earlier this year agreed that the next twenty years will see a huge shift towards ITS. Today’s communications capabilities give vehicles the potential to foresee and avoid collisions, navigate the quickest route to their destination, make use of up-to-the-minute traffic reports, identify the nearest available parking slot, minimise their carbon emissions and provide multimedia communications.
Considerable resources have been invested in R&D, but the lack of global standards is widely regarded as a major impediment to large-scale deployment of ITS services and applications. This collaboration creates a global forum for the creation of a set of international communication standards needed for ITS to become a definitive feature of the modern automotive industry.
For more information on the meeting, its registration procedures and remote participation, please consult the meeting’s homepage at

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Tuesday, 13 December 2011 09:07:35 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Thursday, 01 December 2011

Geneva, 30 November 2011 – The arresting digital displays of Times Square, Piccadilly Circus and Shibuya are just a foretaste of a brave new world of cityscapes illuminated by interactive, dynamic and highly targeted signage, according to a new ITU-T Technology Watch Report, Digital signage: the right information in all the right places.

Advances in display technologies, declining manufacturing costs and a retail boom in emerging economies are all contributing to the rapid spread of large-scale high-definition display networks. But the proprietary nature of current digital signage solutions is restricting the integration of applications across different networks and vendors. Interoperable global standards will be crucial to the future development of this emerging market, unlocking enormous value not just for display system developers, retailers and newscasters, but for governments and the community at large.

Tomorrow’s dynamic signage can play a crucial civic role in areas like traffic management, public transport systems, safe crowd management at large events, control of people flows in public areas and private venues, and emergency response systems. But to do that effectively, standardized platforms will be crucial.

Full press release

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Thursday, 01 December 2011 10:43:56 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
Technology offers practical means of cutting carbon emissions
Geneva, 25 November 2011 – ITU, together with a coalition of industry partners, will be working to convince delegates at the UN COP 17 climate change conference in Durban next week to harness the power of information and communication technology (ICT) to promote mitigation and adaptation to climate change.

Today’s advanced technologies can transform social, industrial and business processes to effect the changes needed to achieve sustainability. But while the potential of ICTs to make a real difference is widely recognized by the technology community and government ICT ministries, it is still far from being understood and embraced by environmental lobby groups and policymakers.

Full press release

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Thursday, 01 December 2011 09:08:23 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, 29 November 2011

The result of the consultation of Member States in TSB Circulars 203 and 231 is as follows:

Rec. No.















Accordingly these draft Recommendations will now be included in the list to be considered for approval at the SG15 closing plenary on 16 December 2011. 

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Tuesday, 29 November 2011 14:04:55 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

ITU, the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP)/ Secretariat of the Basel Convention and the United Nations University (UNU), in collaboration with the Solving the E-waste Problem (StEP) Initiative and the Center for Environment and Development for the Arab Region and Europe (CEDARE), have launched a joint survey on e-waste.

This survey aims to collect detailed data on e-waste management, policies and standards; constructing a comprehensive overview of the current e-waste landscape and identifying future challenges in this realm. Such a mapping of the e-waste issue will establish a base upon which the exchange of e-waste information and best practices can occur, and will form a valuable tool in communicating the gravity of the problem and promoting collaborative work in the future development of policy and management of e-waste.
The widespread use of electrical and electronic equipment (EEE) has raised public awareness of its positive effects such as the reduction of the digital divide, but also of the negative environmental and health effects associated with the inefficient waste management of end-of-life electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE or e-waste).

There have been alarming reports of e-waste mismanagement in many countries, particularly in less developed nations and countries with economies in transition. E-waste is a significant contributor to the ICT industry’s impact on the environment, and urgent global action to address this issue is essential if the industry is to fulfill its commitment to a sustainable future.

For further information, please see the survey’s webpage:

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Tuesday, 29 November 2011 08:54:21 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Friday, 25 November 2011

ITU is organizing a Workshop on Standards and Intellectual Property Rights in New Delhi, India, 19-20 December 2011. Taking place at the HMR Institute of Technology and Management, the event will be hosted by the Global ICT Standardization Forum for India (GISFI), and will be followed by the seventh GISFI meeting at the same venue, 21-22 December 2011.

One of the key aims of standardization is to enable the efficient ‘globalization’ of ICT products and solutions. IPR issues must be taken into consideration when developing standards, a process demanding a balance of varying stakeholder interests; such as those of patent holders, standards implementers and standards’ end-users. Additionally, SDOs frequently encounter copyright issues relating to the incorporation of software in standards.

Such patent and copyright issues are the subject of global debate, and the workshop is being convened to provide a forum for discussions relating to the inclusion of patented technology and software in standards. International experts from both the public and private sector will provide an overview of these issues and share their insights on the present nature of the issue and how it is likely to progress in the future.

Participation in the workshop is open to ITU Member States, Sector Members, Associates, Academia and to any individual from a country part of ITU’s membership. Fellowships are available upon request, please contact

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Friday, 25 November 2011 20:37:16 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

Further to the agreement between the Director, ITU Telecommunication Standardization Bureau and the Chairman of the Internet Engineering Taskforce (IETF) detailed in the ITU-T Newslog of November 14, the agreed statement has been included in a proposed compromise from the Japanese administration. The relevant documents are publicly available at:

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Friday, 25 November 2011 18:24:02 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

ITU’s Kaleidoscope academic conference The fully networked human? − Innovations for future networks and services (Cape Town, South Africa, 12-14 December 2011) will be made available as a live audio and video webcast in order that remote participants can see and hear presentations from wherever they are in the world.

Technically co-sponsored by the IEEE Communications Society, Kaleidoscope 2011 will bring together academia, research organizations and experts working on the standardization of telecommunications and ICTs.  (See here for programme, bios and presentation slides).

Accepted papers will be made available through the IEEE Xplore repository of academic papers. A prize fund totaling $10,000 will be awarded to the three best papers. Young Author Recognition certificates will also be issued.

In addition to an exhibition by local universities, keynote speakers and invited papers, ITU Kaleidoscope 2011 will host Jules Verne’s Corner, a special space for science fiction writers and dreamers, a Tutorial on : Future Internet Impacts on the Evolution of NGN Infrastructures and Services and a Special Session on ITU & Academia.

Register now for free remote participation.

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Friday, 25 November 2011 15:06:41 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, 21 November 2011

ITU is organizing a two-day Workshop on Digital Signage in Tokyo, Japan, 13-14 December 2011.

Digital signage, also the topic of an upcoming ITU-T Technology Watch Report, is defined as a, “network of digital displays that are centrally managed and addressable for targeted information, entertainment, merchandising and advertisement.” User interaction can trigger content adaption, and the level of this interaction will develop alongside location information and environmental sensor technology.

The workshop will provide a comprehensive introduction to digital signage technology, how it is currently being applied, and how it is likely to expand in the future. Particular emphasis will be placed on how standards are to play a key role in ensuring this technology meets its potential.

The proprietary nature of current digital signage solutions restricts the integration of applications across different networks or vendors.

Interoperable standards are thus crucial to the development of this industry. The great value it will unlock for its providers and users can only be achieved through the expansion of large-scale digital signage networks, and standardization is the means to ensure this expansion occurs as
cost-effectively and as rapidly as possible.

For detailed event information, please consult Remote participation is available and encouraged; enter the room by following this link,

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Monday, 21 November 2011 14:58:45 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, 14 November 2011

Ahead of IETF’s 82nd meeting Malcolm Johnson, Director of ITU’s Telecommunication Standardization Bureau (TSB) has issued a statement underlining ITU’s commitment to a collegial working environment for ICT standards.
"Wherever appropriate, ITU will continue to reference the deliverables of other standards bodies rather than duplicating their work, and as far as possible we try to avoid the development of competing standards. By doing so we can best serve the needs of the international ICT community."
The statement underlines ITU core principles on cooperation detailed in ITU-T’s strategic plan (contained in Resolution 71 (Rev. Guadalajara 2010)) : “Cooperation and collaboration with other standardization bodies and relevant consortia and fora are key to avoiding duplication of work and achieving efficient use of resources, as well as incorporating expertise from outside ITU.”
Full details on generic procedures for including references to documents of other organizations in ITU-T Recommendations can be found in ITU-T Recommendation A.5.
Consequently Mr Johnson and Mr Russ Housley, Chair of the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) have agreed that MPLS, including MPLS-TP, is defined exclusively in the standards-track RFCs. The ITU-T will reference the IETF RFCs for MPLS-TP from its Recommendations providing there is consensus that they meet the needs of its members. By mutual agreement some other specific aspects, including the equipment model and protocol-neutral management information model (G.8121-series, G.8151, G.8152), developed in ITU-T are considered part of MPLS-TP.

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Monday, 14 November 2011 09:24:09 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, 01 November 2011

ITU-T’s Study Group 13 has consented new standards underpinning central elements of Future Networks (FNs); multiple virtual networks enabling a wide range of network services, and energy saving capabilities superior to those offered by traditional network technologies.
Future Networks (FNs) will provide revolutionary capabilities, facilities and services which will be difficult to support using existing network technologies. The number and range of network-based services is expected to explode in the near future, and a single network architecture will struggle to satisfy the requirements unique to each of these new services. Forming multiple physical networks will demand large outlays of capital for their installation, operation and maintenance. FNs thus need to realize diverse services through the creation of heterogenous network architectures overlaying a common physical network.

The new standards are Recommendation ITU-T Y.3011, “Framework of Network Virtualization for Future Networks”, and Recommendation ITU-T Y.3021, “Framework of Energy Saving for Future Networks.”

Recommendation Y.3011 provides a framework of network virtualization technology, a means allowing multiple virtual networks called Logically Isolated Network Partitions (LINPs) to coexist in a single physical network. Network Virtualization will create isolated, flexible networks supporting a broad range of network architectures and services. Their isolation will allow the satisfaction of services’ unique requirements, but also presents the opportunity to create experimental networks or test-beds where developers, providers and users can design and evaluate new services. The flexibility of these virtual networks is another key feature of Y.3011’s design, allowing the reconfiguration of networks to reflect the evolving characteristics of FN services and applications as they mature.

Environmental awareness is one of the fundamental objectives of FNs and energy-saving technologies form a crucial part of their development. Through their creation of network architectures for smart energy grids and ubiquitous sensor networks, FNs will do much to improve the energy efficiency of other non-ICT industry sectors. Their proliferation will however also increase the volume of energy demanded by FNs themselves. Y.3021 thus provides a framework to minimize the energy consumption of network facilities such as routers, switches and servers, as well as a method to manage the total energy consumption of FNs at all stages of their lifecycle.

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Tuesday, 01 November 2011 14:47:30 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Thursday, 27 October 2011

Geneva, 25 October 2011 – A meeting of 20 CTOs from leading companies1 in the information and communication technology (ICT) industry has urged ITU to accelerate technical standardization work in the field of e-health. CTOs stressed that reliable, interoperable standards are key to providing patients and health professionals with the means to utilize remote consultation services, advanced ICT-based diagnostic procedures and electronic health information services.

The meeting, which was held today in Geneva during ITU Telecom World 2011, agreed that international coordination on standards will be vital, and that growth in telemedicine services will also demand aggressive roll-out of broadband networks. The CTOs encouraged ITU, as the world’s leading developer of global ICT standards, to intensify its involvement by developing essential e-health infrastructure standards, and by cooperating with other standards bodies to create reliable, secure and interoperable e-health solutions.

1) Participating companies were: Alcatel-Lucent; Cisco; Ericsson; Etisalat Group; Freescale; Fujitsu; Huawei; KDDI; Microsoft; Netscout Systems; NSN; NTT; Orange FT Group; RIM; Telecom Italia; Telefonica; Telekom South Africa; Turk Telecom Group; Verizon; Vodafone Group; ZTE.

Full press release

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Thursday, 27 October 2011 16:09:53 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

ITU announced the winners of its IPTV App Challenge at ITU Telecom World 2011. The corporate app category was given to Discover Japan from NHK Enterprises (Japan) which offers users an introduction to the best of Japanese culture. The best individual/SME award split the vote and was awarded to 7 Days Gallery and Dengue Combat.
Discover Japan highlights Tokyo's cutting-edge pop culture but also the traditional culture of Kyoto, a city steeped in over 1,000 years of history. With broadcast TV and video on demand as the areas of focus, the application responds to users' interests, providing answers to their questions, offering interesting information, and enabling them to shop online.
7 Days Gallery, by Alève Mine and Eric Bréchemier is a digital space to promote new artists/designers. It organizes seven pieces of art work from one artist/designer in a collection, and presents a different collection for each day of the week. Users can browse the pictures with their remote control and find out more information on each of the piece of art, such as its title, description text, a web site (URL)  and online shopping possibilities. Users can also find information about the artist including: their biography, portrait and web site.
Dengue Combat is an interactive TV programme to promote awareness and knowledge to combat dengue fever. IPTV users are informed by watching a video programme about dengue fever. They can also find out the nearest medical care facility by providing their postal code and verify their knowledge of this disease by participating in a quiz.
More details on the apps can be found at:

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Thursday, 27 October 2011 13:55:24 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
ITU has approved a new protocol to relay biometric information, connecting medical practitioners with the real-time medical data of patients in remote locations. Study Group 17’s Recommendation ITU-T X.1080.1 is the first in a suite of e-health and telemedicine recommendations and supports interactions between a patient’s local medical facility and a remote medical centre.

e-Health technologies have great potential to bridge the service provision inequalities between developed and developing nations, as well as between urban and rural communities. ITU-T X.1080.1 takes into account work in other standards bodies and recognizes and identifies data formats and interactions using Abstract Notation One (ASN.1) object identifiers (OIDs and OID-IRIs). It also provides security features in the form of Cryptographic Message Syntax (CMS), which enables both integrity and encryption.

ITU-T X.1080.1 is designed to provide wide-area communication supporting all health-related activities, where the communication can be usefully undertaken as structured messages. From this base, the X.1080 series will develop into a set of recommendations addressing physical, chemical, biological, culturological and psychological diagnoses, interventions and prescriptions. It aims to remove the need for a co-location of medical practitioners and patients, and will support both multi-party (for audit and training purposes) and one-to-one interaction.

The remaining five parts of the X.1080 series, dealing with the identification of physiological quantities and units, are being constructed in close collaboration with ISO/TC 12, and IEC/TC 25. 

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Thursday, 27 October 2011 13:52:11 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Wednesday, 19 October 2011

The ITU Regional Workshop on Bridging the Standardization Gap (BSG) for Arab and Africa Regions took place in Algiers, Algeria, 26-28 September 2011.

The workshop was organized in association with Autorité de Régulation de la Poste et des Télécommunications (ARPT), and was generously supported by Nokia Siemens Networks and Microsoft.

The overarching goal of ITU’s Bridging the Standardization Gap program is to facilitate increased participation of developing countries in standardization, to ensure that developing countries experience the economic benefits of associated technological development, and to better reflect the requirements and interests of developing countries in the standards-development process. One specific objective of this project is to gain an understanding of the issues inhibiting the standards development, implementation, and usage capacities of developing countries.
Some 110 participants from Arab and African regions attended the workshop.  The program focused on topics including ICT standardization challenges for countries in these regions, strategies for bridging the standardization gap, best practices for conformity assessment, and standardization topics being discussed in ITU-T Study Groups. 

Outcomes/directives produced by the workshop:

      • Participants from the African and Arab regions support the implementation of the ITU-T Conformity and Interoperability program in these regions, including the use of the ITU Mark.

      • Encourage developing countries to play an active role in the reduction of the digital divide by promoting standards-oriented innovation and contributions to global standardization processes;

      • Consider the creation of regional and sub-regional centres for compliance and interoperability tests;

      • Actively involve members of the public, private enterprises, universities and research centres in ITU standardization activities; 

      • Seek ITU support for a targeted capacity-building campaign on ITU-T Recommendations (e.g. the 2-week training on Optical Cables and Systems Recommendations), and establish regional laboratories to eliminate counterfeiting;

      • Establish and/or identify test laboratories in the region able to carry out physical audits and compliance tests. Tunisia is already setting up a test lab, and this could be used as a template for the region;           

      • Establish cooperation agreements with regional partners for the early identification of equipment non-compliance;

      • Establish a Regional Centre for standardization based in Algeria, a proposal made by the President of the Council of the ARPT in her opening speech and reiterated by the Minister of Post and ICT;

      • Encourage the sharing of information at a regional level by establishing a database containing blacklisted counterfeit products;

      • Promote accreditation and certification schemes, and test methodology for the material production areas;

      • Ensure that technical requirements are fulfilled by local products, allowing them access to regional markets; and

      • Ensure that legislative and regulatory mechanisms are implemented to detect fraud and counterfeiting schemes, and to enforce penalties when such activity is discovered.  

These mechanisms should be modelled on market surveillance schemes already established in other jurisdictions, such as the EU, the United States, Brazil, Canada, etc..

Interactive Training Session: 27 September 2011
The workshop was followed by a one-day Interactive Training Session in the form of a simulated Study Group meeting. These sessions are designed to provide an introduction to international standardization meetings, and familiarise participants with the typical format of the decision-making process. They are especially relevant to developing nations as they encourage participation in ITU activities, and clearly explain how these nations may play a formative role in standards creation.   Some 60 participants attended the session, and very positive feedback was received.

ITU Academia Seminar: 28 September 2011
This Seminar introduced ITU’s new membership category for academia, and gave concrete examples of how academic and research institutions can benefit through participation in ITU-T Study Group activity. A professor from the American University of Beirut explicitly outlined how his institution  and other universities in the region could contribute to ITU-T Study Group 17 on Security. Academia was also encouraged to provide input to ITU-T TechWatch reports.

Academia’s interest in membership was evident, with some universities declaring their intention to join ITU. Academia also expressed strong interest in receiving TSB support in developing graduate-level curricula in the field of telecommunication standards.

For more information refer to the ITU Bridging the Standardization Gap website at

French Version 

Arabic Version

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Wednesday, 19 October 2011 07:51:56 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, 18 October 2011

The October issue of IEEE Communications Magazine carries a ‘feature topic’ on ITU’s third Kaleidoscope event – Beyond the Internet? − Innovations for future networks and services.

The magazine, also available online, carries the winning papers, as well as one invited paper from this ITU academic event.
Organized by ITU with IEEE ComSoc as Technical Co-Sponsor and supported by Cisco, Nokia and Myfire, the conference brought together some of the best academic minds from around the world to present their research on innovative technologies that could challenge the fundamental networking design principles of the Internet. Among over 110 papers submitted, 37 papers were presented. The best three were awarded prizes totaling $10,000 kindly donated by Cisco.
All Kaleidoscope papers are also available in IEEE Xplore, IEEE's online library.
The fourth Kaleidoscope event “The fully networked human? Innovations for future networks and services” will be held in Cape Town, South Africa, 12-14 December 2011.

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Tuesday, 18 October 2011 09:56:58 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Friday, 14 October 2011

2011-10-14 – World Standards Day is celebrated each year on 14 October to pay tribute to the efforts of thousands of experts worldwide who collaborate within IEC, ISO and ITU to develop voluntary International Standards that facilitate trade, spread knowledge and disseminate technological advances.

The theme of World Standards Day 2011 is, “International standards – Creating confidence globally”.

The World Standards Day message is signed by the leaders of the three principal international standardization organizations: Dr. Klaus Wucherer, President of the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC): Dr. Boris Aleshin, President of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), and Dr. Hamadoun Touré, Secretary-General of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU). The three organizations are the partners making up the World Standards Cooperation (WSC).

Their message points out that international standards for products and services underpin quality, ecology, safety, reliability, interoperability, efficiency and effectiveness. Standards do all of this while giving manufacturers confidence in their ability to reach out to global markets safe in the knowledge that their product will perform globally.

This is because international standards provide interoperability which in turn creates economies of scale and ensures that users can obtain equal service wherever they travel. So international standards benefit consumers, manufacturers and service providers alike. Importantly, in developing countries this accelerates the deployment of new products and services and encourages economic development.

“In today’s world we need to have a high level of expectation that things will work the way we expect them to work,” the three leaders affirm.

“We expect that when we pick up the phone we will be able to instantly connect to any other phone on the planet. We expect to be able to connect to the Internet and be provided with news and information… instantly. When we fall ill, we rely on the healthcare equipment used to treat us.  When we drive our cars, we have confidence that the engine management, steering and braking, and child safety systems are reliable. We expect to be protected against electrical power failure and the harmful effects of pollution.”

The heads of IEC, ISO and ITU underline that international standards create confidence globally, adding, “Indeed one of the key objectives of standardization is to provide this confidence. Systems, products and services perform as we expect them to because of the essential features specified in international standards.”

In addition, international standards create confidence by being developed in an environment of openness and transparency, where every stakeholder can contribute.

The three standardization leaders conclude by emphasizing that the objective of IEC, ISO and ITU is to “facilitate and augment this confidence globally, so as to connect the world with international standards”.

Download the World Standards Day poster here.

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Friday, 14 October 2011 08:30:51 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Thursday, 13 October 2011

To remotely participate in ITU-T Study Group 13’s workshop on Service Delivery Platforms (SDP): SDP for Telecommunication Ecosystems – from today’s realities to the requirements and challenges of the future click here. The live event will take place on Monday 17 October, starting at 0700 GMT at ITU headquarters in Geneva.

Participants can either use existing Adobe Connect logins or access the webcast by logging in as a ‘guest.’

For more information on Adobe Connect remote participation…

The workshop will provide an overview of the telecommunication-oriented SDP technologies already in use, as well as the challenges presented by these existing technologies. Added to this will be a particular emphasis on the future of SDP, especially with regard to the standardization activities likely to arise in the future.

For more detailed information and to register, consult the workshop’s webpage:


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Thursday, 13 October 2011 16:21:03 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Friday, 07 October 2011

The latest report from the ITU-T Technology Watch series surveys some of the hottest developments in the world of video games, describes the most common gaming platforms and terminals, highlights new technologies enabling a better gaming experience, and identifies future standardization activities.

Over the past 30 years, video games have become an important part of contemporary global entertainment and media. Games and gaming have evolved from dedicated, single-game units to massively multiplayer online role-player games with millions of players. Today they are a huge media business worth billions of dollars, and its bestsellers continuously beat blockbuster movies in sales revenue.

The ever increasing expansion of the Internet has significantly contributed to the growth of gaming on dedicated video game consoles and PCs. The possibility to compete with other players around the world is taken for granted by most players. Mobile broadband and the growing penetration of smartphones brings further movement into the gaming ecosystem. Independent developers and small start-up companies are able to compete in the market and deliver their games to huge audiences. The latest step is the rise of social network games on platforms with hundreds of millions of users. These transformations have not only changed the way games look today, they have also influenced the audience and the business models of the gaming industry.

Consumers are beginning to struggle with the ever-increasing number of set top-boxes, satellite receivers and gaming consoles. It is a logical and certainly desirable goal to integrate these closely related technologies on to a multipurpose , standards-based multimedia platform. Incorporating a variety of audiovisual technologies into a single 3D TV device is understandably a task demanding a great degree of standardization work. ITU will bring together service and content providers, including games developers, to attempt to standardize communication protocols, toolboxes, middleware and security frameworks.

The report and additional sources of information are available at

Experts from industry, research and academia are invited to submit topic proposals and abstracts for future reports in the Technology Watch series. Please contact the team at for details.

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Friday, 07 October 2011 15:01:46 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Wednesday, 05 October 2011

Study Group 13, responsible for Next Generation Networks (NGN), is hosting a workshop: Service Delivery Platforms (SDP) for Telecommunication Ecosystems: from today’s realities to the requirements and challenges of the future. Free of charge, it will take place on Monday 17 October at ITU headquarters in Geneva.

The workshop will provide an overview of the telecommunication-oriented SDP technologies already in use, as well as the challenges presented by these existing technologies. Added to this will be a particular emphasis on the future of SDP, especially with regard to the standardization activities likely to arise in the future.

For more detailed information and to register, consult the workshop’s webpage -

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Wednesday, 05 October 2011 08:59:39 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Thursday, 29 September 2011

ITU has underlined its key role in green ICT with a raft of announcements today by Study Group 5 of its Telecommunication Standardization Sector (ITU-T).

A meeting of the group in Seoul, Korea has seen agreement on a globally-recognized set of methodologies to assess the environmental impact of information and communications technology (ICT). It also saw agreement to produce a report on due diligence guidelines for conflict minerals supply, and to study environmental protection and recycling solutions for batteries for mobile phones and other ICT devices.

Estimates of how much ICTs can reduce global emissions – and estimates of the emissions generated by the ICT sector itself – still vary widely, due to the application of different measurement methodologies. After the problem was raised by delegates to ITU’s ‘ICTs and Climate Change’ symposium in 2008, ITU took on the challenge and has pioneered adoption of a new globally-agreed set of standards.

To ensure consistency between different approaches, the new methodology has been developed in cooperation with other standardization organizations such as ISO, IEC, ETSI and ATIS. The new methodology is also aligned with the Digital Agenda of the European Commission. 

Dr Hamadoun Touré, Secretary General, ITU: “This methodology has been developed by ITU's industry members. This will be important in ensuring it gains wide acceptance by the world's ICT industry. An internationally agreed methodology means estimates of the impact of ICTs on greenhouse gas emissions and energy consumption will now have much greater credibility. It will also show just how significant a contribution ICTs can make by reducing global emissions in other sectors.”

Neelie Kroes, Vice President of the European Commission: “I'm pleased that the industry is taking the task of measuring its own footprint so seriously. And I'm pleased that the ITU, as a UN agency, is doing such good work facilitating negotiations, reaching out globally to industry sub-sectors and to other standardization initiatives.”

New guidelines on conflict minerals

New ITU work on ‘conflict minerals’ will also begin in response to a request from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). ITU will make a survey of existing due diligence requirements and guidelines concerning sources of conflict minerals (in particular, those that are smelted into tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold), as well as their use in conformity with recognized international treaties and national legislation, where this exists.

Rare earth minerals are used in consumer electronics products such as mobile phones, DVD players, video games and computers. The report will provide guidance to ICT entities seeking to exercise due diligence on, and formalize the origin and chain of custody of, conflict minerals used in their products and on their suppliers to ensure that conflict minerals used in their products do not directly or indirectly finance armed conflict or result in labour or human rights violations. Agreement to address this issue demonstrates the ICT industry’s commitment to sustainability at all levels of the value chain.

Following on from the success of ITU’s Universal Charging Solution for mobile devices (Recommendation ITU-T L.1000), the meeting also agreed to study the benefits and disadvantages of the standardization of batteries for mobile terminals and other ICT devices, looking at energy efficiency over the battery life cycle, eco-design information, battery lifetime and exchangeability, safety and environmental protection, recycling and reuse. This could lead to a reduction of harmful materials used in batteries and an increased lifespan of ICT products. Battery manufacturers, device manufacturers, operators and users will all benefit, say experts. 

Ahmed Zeddam, Chairman of ITU-T Study Group 5: “This has been the most productive and significant meeting in the long history of Study Group 5. Twelve new important standards have been agreed, including many critical to methodologies to assess the environmental impact of ICT and the protection of home networks and next generation network (NGN) equipment from electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) and environmental effects. The meeting also saw revisions to a key set of standards on resistibility to overvoltages or overcurrents of telecoms equipment. ITU is the only organization producing these important global standards.”

For more information, please contact:

Toby Johnson
Senior Communications Officer
Tel: +41 22 730 5877;
mobile: +41 79 249 4868

Sarah Parkes

Chief, Media Relations and Public Information,
Tel: +41 22 730 6135;
mobile: +41 79 599 1439

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Thursday, 29 September 2011 13:21:34 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     |