Abu Dhabi - UAE
19-23 September 2022

August 11th > The Preliminary Programme Overview is available for download.

Programme

The week’s programme explores how by working together we can use standards to achieve a better and more sustainable world.

Stay tuned to our social platforms for key updates as they go live!

All times are in United Arab Emirates Standard Time (UTC+4).

Join us in Abu Dhabi for the full event experience or take part virtually in the online sessions.

Monday Sessions

Monday 14:00‑17:30

In-person (with livestream)

Devco

The annual meeting of the ISO Committee on developing country matters (DEVCO) will discuss opportunities and challenges of ISO members in developing countries contributing to the future of the standardization landscape.

Monday 14:00‑15:15

Invite-only
Hybrid / Workshop 

Committee Chairs workshop

Standards development for the ‘new normal’ and the London Declaration

As Covid launched us to a ‘new normal’, the 2021 London Declaration set an ambitious vision for our community. Join an interactive conversation on how we must seize the chance to change processes and culture for the better.

Monday 15:30‑17:00

Invite-only
Hybrid / Workshop

Committee Chairs workshop

Coherence of the International Standards system

Global challenges that reach across ISO, IEC and ITU-T continue to emerge. Join us for a lively debate on how we are addressing these challenges, and share your experiences coordinating activities across the ISO technical community and beyond.

Monday 18:00‑19:00

Virtual

Providing a global cross-disciplinary community of practice with a space to share ideas and design climate solutions.

High-end climate change requires transformative solutions as conventional strategies will not be enough to withstand major climate disruption. The Expanded Innovation Space aims to promote transformative innovations for a low-emissions and climate-resilient future.

It commits to facilitating solutions that support the climate-related Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and address core human needs for food, shelter, mobility, and access via alternative value chains aligned with those SDGs.

Bringing together leading climate experts, this session will provide a global cross-disciplinary community of practice with a space to share ideas and design climate solutions in a spirit of collaboration.

Monday 19:00‑21:00

Invite-only
In-person / Workshop

marketing workshop: Sales and promotion

Having a robust sales and marketing strategy in place is essential to demonstrate the benefits of standards.

From climate change to cybersecurity, ISO standards offer solutions to the world’s biggest challenges. The way we market ourselves is key to ensuring our standards are seen as assets for sustainable change across national borders.

Join other ISO members for a dynamic discussion on how best to spread the word.

Tuesday Sessions

Tuesday 08:00‑09:00

Virtual

Explores the role of standards through two case studies through a facilitated and interactive discussion with experts.

The events of the past two years have served as a reminder that the only way we can address global challenges is through coordinated and coherent action. Organizations cannot afford to operate in silos. 
   
The world is in rapid need of finding common solutions. International Standards can act as accelerators of change, helping international organizations to amplify their impact. However, for standards to fulfil their potential for good, we need effective and meaningful collaboration with other international organizations.
  
This session will set the stage for a dialogue to better understand current opportunities and barriers for collaboration and what would need to be done to facilitate ongoing, strategic cooperation for greater impact.  
 

Our global food systems are facing multiple challenges. The way food is produced, processed, packaged, distributed and consumed hinders food security and depletes natural resources. This is compounded by a volatile climate and its deleterious effects on food production.

To address these issues, we need to look at entire food systems and work towards making them more secure and sustainable. With a focus on agri-tech innovation, data, digitalization and new operational methods and systems, standards play a pivotal role in creating a circular economy for food. This session explores the role of standards through two case studies, from Kenya and Singapore, and facilitates an interactive discussion with experts.

Tuesday 09:00‑10:00

Hybrid / Panel

A conversation between international organizations on the opportunities and challenges of collaborating on international standards.

The events of the past two years remind us that today’s global challenges cannot be solved without coordinated and coherent action. Collaborative efforts will be crucial to ensuring the scale and speed of change necessary to deliver the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

International Standards can serve as accelerators of change to support organizations worldwide in their endeavours.

To help promote their uptake, ISO is seeking to establish effective and meaningful partnerships. A panel session will be held to explore the common challenges to collaboration and identify ways in which they can be overcome.

#collaboration #sustainability #developingcountries

Tuesday 10:30‑12:00

In-person / Roundtable

Shaping Solutions

A unique experience in crowdsourcing answers on the toughest challenges in the standards world. Bring along your challenges or help others with theirs.

How do we engage universities? What are the challenges of digitalization? Am I ready for a future pandemic? Nearly every global issue today, from climate change to governance to disaster response, can benefit from having a larger crowd of informed individuals helping to generate, vet and implement solutions.

Many of the more sensitive or otherwise complex subject matters are not being addressed in a timely manner, if at all, due to a lack of creative ideas, resources or other challenges.

This session offers a safe space for standards industry peers to examine and discuss out-of-the-box solutions to burning questions.

#collaboration #innovation #developingcountries

Tuesday 10:30‑12:00

In-person / World Café

Come and discuss future trends and challenges with experts on the subjects that interest you most. 

The world around us is changing at an unprecedented pace. In the “go faster, do more” technology culture, more and more organizations are failing due to human error, bad judgement and the inability to see the risks coming their way. Are we prepared for the future? Anticipating the challenges and opportunities our world will face tomorrow requires in-depth insight of the forces driving change on a global scale.

The ISO Foresight Trend Report identifies the most significant trends that will impact standardization as we work towards the goals and priorities of the ISO Strategy 2030. Join us in exploring the driving forces that will shape our future world.

#sustainability #innovation #developingcountries

Tuesday 10:30‑12:00

Hybrid / Workshop

Building trust (CASCO/DEVCO workshop)

Engage in dialogue with experts on trade digitalization and understand how its evolution will impact standardization and conformity assessment.

The impact of digital technologies on trade will continue to accelerate. The Internet of Things, artificial intelligence, 3D printing and blockchain are expected to have profoundly transformative effects on global trade patterns.

They will also affect how conformity is assessed and communicated, bringing confidence to markets and supply chains the world over. While innovative digital technologies have undeniable advantages, access to them is not equal.

The digitalization of trade could exacerbate the digital divide, creating new obstacles for developing countries looking to expand into regional and global markets.

This session is an opportunity to engage in dialogue with experts on trade digitalization and understand how its evolution will impact standardization and conformity assessment, particularly in developing countries.

Tuesday 14:00‑15:00

Hybrid / Barbershop

Barbershop

In their role as International Gender Champions, leaders from the World Standards Cooperation (IEC, ISO and ITU) open-up for an informal and candid conversation around gender equality. 

Leaders from the World Standards Cooperation (IEC, ISO and ITU) will come together for a candid conversation around gender issues. The standards community is doing its part to promote gender equality by bringing on board a man’s perspective.

To achieve full gender equality, men need to be in the rooms where discussions about gender are happening. Join leaders of the world’s three largest international standards organizations as they discuss how their roles help transform social norms and support women’s empowerment.

Barbershop events are an initiative by UNWomen to provide men with tools to address inequality. 

#HeForShe #diversity #sustainability #developingcountries

Tuesday 14:00‑15:00

Hybrid

In a world riddled with uncertainty, the need for standards has never been greater.

Despite the recent COVID pandemic, the global standards market, valued at approximately USD 1.5 billion, has been experiencing a growth of 5 percent per year.

Yet, current global economic uncertainty, the risk of stagflation in several economies and mounting tension in international trade present significant risks for sustained growth.

This session will cover the main trends, opportunities and challenges of the global standards market. A must-go-to for anyone looking to understand today’s standards market landscape. 

Tuesday 18:00‑19:00

Virtual

How can the digital transformation of conformity assessment be leveraged further for the benefit of all.

Standards and conformity assessment provide the tools to deliver trust and confidence about the environment in which we live. But what happens when this environment changes?

Accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic, digitalization has fundamentally altered the way we live, work and relate to each other. Conformity assessment actors had to develop alternative ways of working based on AI, machine learning, remote auditing, constant data exchange and much more. In this context, how do we ensure the sector continues to meet the demands for quality and safety? Are standards still fit to deliver the level of confidence required by the market?

Looking beyond the specific circumstance of the pandemic, this session considers the digital transformation of conformity assessment and how it can be leveraged further for the benefit of all.

Tuesday 18:00‑19:00

Virtual

To meet the commitments of the Paris Agreement, it is important that policies around trade and investment support national efforts.

Climate action is a key challenge for countries around the world, made more urgent by the marked increase in the frequency and extremity of adverse climatic events. Trade and climate are inextricably linked, trade policy and activity can impact the climate, and the climate can have a significant disruptive effect on trade flows. 
 
The focus of this session is to unpack some of the major challenges that are posed by trade and climate, viewed through the lens of a range of different stakeholder groups. This will be complemented by short introductions exploring some of the critically important work that is being delivered to minimize the climatic risks associated with global trade.  

Wednesday Sessions

Wednesday 08:00‑09:00

Virtual

Gender inequality is one of the most significant human challenges of today. To solve this global challenge, and to achieve full gender equality, it is a necessity that men participate in the conversation and be part of the solution. 

Hear the CEOs of the world’s largest international standards organizations discuss how their own behaviours, privileges, and roles can affect and support the positive transformation of social norms in gender equality and women’s empowerment. Barbershop events are an initiative designed by UNWomen to provide men with tools to address inequality.

#HeForShe 
 

Ageing populations

By 2050, one in six people in the world will be over age 65.

The world’s population is growing older: by 2050, one in six people in the world will be over age 65.

While age profiles will vary greatly between countries, every country in the world will experience an increase in its average age over the next few decades. This demographic transition will lead to both challenges and opportunities at a societal level.

There will be implications for workforces, healthcare, consumer trends, physical and social environments, and more. 

Wednesday 09:00‑10:00

Hybrid / Panel

Explores how innovative water treatment technologies can help address water scarcity and deliver a future of true water abundance.

Almost two-thirds of the world’s population experience severe water scarcity for at least one month each year. What’s more, over two billion people live in countries where water supply is inadequate, most of them in rural areas.

This leaves people, farms and other essential industries, such as agriculture and health, without the water they need to function. As the crisis gets worse, new advanced technologies can help us better manage our water resources and mitigate the impacts of climate change.

This session explores how innovative water treatment technologies, supported by standards, can help address water scarcity and deliver a future of true water abundance.

Wednesday 09:00‑10:00

Hybrid / Panel

Digitalization and digital transformation

The role of standards in a world where digitalized collaboration is becoming the new norm.

Technological advances are constantly changing how we live and work and are already shaping the world of tomorrow. As ISO goes through its own digital transformation to continue to address emerging needs, ISO and its members must also continue to push boundaries when it comes to digitalization.

Wednesday 10:30‑12:00

In-person / Gamified experience

A unique and engaging experience uncovering the true power of diversity. 

Inclusion is key to unleashing the true potential of standards. Getting all voices on board ensures the standards produced by ISO are relevant and applicable. Whatever the context, we all need to ensure a more inclusive and fairer society for all.

But equity in standards setting is not an easy task. How can we better include those voices that often go unheard? Be part of the solution and help co-create a standards development process that is inclusive and open to all. Are you up to the challenge?

#diversity #sustainability #developingcountries

Wednesday 13:00‑14:00

Hybrid / Fishbowl

The road to net zero

Join an exclusive and intimate conversation where key stakeholders with very different perspectives imagine net-zero and how we get there.

The events of the past two years have served as a reminder that the only way we can address global challenges is through coordinated and coherent action. Organizations cannot afford to operate in silos. 
   
The world is in rapid need of finding common solutions. International Standards can act as accelerators of change, helping international organizations to amplify their impact. However, for standards to fulfil their potential for good, we need effective and meaningful collaboration with other international organizations.
  
This session will set the stage for a dialogue to better understand current opportunities and barriers for collaboration and what would need to be done to facilitate ongoing, strategic cooperation for greater impact.  
 

Imagine a world where net zero is a reality. How did we get there? The next few years will be crucial if the world is to reach carbon neutrality by 2050. It will require strong and committed leadership from the political and business communities along with the ongoing support of civil society.

To achieve COP26’s promise of a cleaner, greener world and help companies, cities and governments uphold their net-zero pledges, we need a regulatory framework that holds us accountable.

This session will explore how International Standards can set the metrics for businesses and regulators to adopt a credible roadmap and prepare for a net-zero future.

#climateaction #sustainability #developingcountries

Wednesday 15:30‑17:00

In-person / World Café

Come and discuss future trends and challenges with experts on the subjects that interest you most. 

The world around us is changing at an unprecedented pace. In the “go faster, do more” technology culture, more and more organizations are failing due to human error, bad judgement and the inability to see the risks coming their way. Are we prepared for the future? Anticipating the challenges and opportunities our world will face tomorrow requires in-depth insight of the forces driving change on a global scale.

The ISO Foresight Trend Report identifies the most significant trends that will impact standardization as we work towards the goals and priorities of the ISO Strategy 2030. Join us in exploring the driving forces that will shape our future world.

#sustainability #innovation #developingcountries

Wednesday 15:30‑17:00

Hybrid / Workshop

Building trust (CASCO/DEVCO workshop)

Engage in dialogue with experts on trade digitalization and understand how its evolution will impact standardization and conformity assessment.

The impact of digital technologies on trade will continue to accelerate. The Internet of Things, artificial intelligence, 3D printing and blockchain are expected to have profoundly transformative effects on global trade patterns.

They will also affect how conformity is assessed and communicated, bringing confidence to markets and supply chains the world over. While innovative digital technologies have undeniable advantages, access to them is not equal.

The digitalization of trade could exacerbate the digital divide, creating new obstacles for developing countries looking to expand into regional and global markets.

This session is an opportunity to engage in dialogue with experts on trade digitalization and understand how its evolution will impact standardization and conformity assessment, particularly in developing countries.

Wednesday 15:30‑17:00

In-person / Roundtable

Shaping Solutions

Examine the impacts of digitalization on standards development, and how we can achieve an equitable and inclusive digital transformation for all.

The digital world proposes novel tools at an unparalleled speed. How do we keep up with them? Can we successfully transition from using paper to digital equivalents on the internet at a global level, without leaving anyone behind?

Is it possible to digitalize an entire industry when in some countries, members still have unstable access to the internet? Digital solutions are reinforcing collaboration but at the same time, digital inequality is becoming an undeniable challenge that can create an even greater divide within and across industries and continents.

This session offers a safe-space for peers in the standards industry to examine and discuss out-of-the-box solutions to ensure that we keep up with global trends, all the while avoiding an even greater digital gap by encouraging customers to invest in digital solutions.

Wednesday 18:00‑19:00

Virtual

A dynamic session featuring two country case studies provides in-depth insight of Africa’s unique complexities.

When it comes to global decarbonization, all eyes are on Africa. The clean energy transition is an opportunity for many African countries to bypass traditional fuels and infrastructure and go straight to building sustainable energy systems.

Yet this requires support from the international community. This dynamic session provides in-depth insight of Africa’s unique complexities and explores ways to strengthen global collaboration for a faster, more sustainable energy transition and explores country perspectives from across the continent.

Wednesday 18:00‑19:00

Virtual

The challenges of corporate governance in the 21st centrury and the urgent need for new mechanisms to keep the pace with a changing world.

The implementation of sustainable development is the social imperative of the 21st century, requiring strong leadership not just by governments and international orgnizations, but also by the private sector.

Everyone agrees that we need effective corporate governance to accelerate the implementation of innovative solutions and advance the sustainability agenda. But there is a lack of alignment on what effective governance means, as well as the rapidly evolving ideas about what constitutes good practice.

This session looks at the challenges of corporate governance in the 21st centrury and the urgent need for new mechanisms to keep the pace with a changing world. 

Thursday Sessions

Thursday 08:00‑09:00

Hybrid

The events of the past two years have served as a reminder that the only way we can address global challenges is through coordinated and coherent action. Organizations cannot afford to operate in silos. 
   
The world is in rapid need of finding common solutions. International Standards can act as accelerators of change, helping international organizations to amplify their impact. However, for standards to fulfil their potential for good, we need effective and meaningful collaboration with other international organizations.
  
This session will set the stage for a dialogue to better understand current opportunities and barriers for collaboration and what would need to be done to facilitate ongoing, strategic cooperation for greater impact.  
 

The science is clear: this is our last chance to mitigate global warming. We need to achieve net zero by the mid- century. This requires commitment and strong leadership from political and business communities, as well as ongoing, aligned contribution from civil society.

To realize COP 26’s promises to tackle climate, which doubled up net-zero pledges from companies, cities and governments in the past year, we need a framework for rules and accountability.

This session explores how International Standards can meet this need and set metrics for businesses and regulators to adopt a credible roadmap to deliver net zero.
 

Join a thought-provoking session that delves deep into the challenges of corporate governance in the 21st century.

The implementation of sustainable development relies on the commitment and engagement of all actors in society, notably governments, international organizations and the private sector.

Effective corporate governance, and clearly stated and articulated commitments, are a precondition to delivering innovative solutions and advancing the global sustainability agenda.

Yet there is a lack of alignment on what effective governance means, as well as rapidly evolving ideas about what constitutes good practice.

Join a thought-provoking session that delves deep into the challenges of corporate governance in the 21st century and the urgent need for new mechanisms to keep pace with a changing world.

Thursday 09:00‑10:00

Hybrid / Panel

Find out how ISO members are transforming their economies and strengthening their climate change policies as part of a commitment to climate action through standards.

The science is clear: the need for urgent measures to reduce emissions and adapt to climate change is overwhelming. In September 2021, the ISO General Assembly defined ISO’s commitment to achieve the climate agenda by 2050 through its adoption of the London Declaration and, over the last year, ISO’s members have risen to the challenge.

This session will present the progress made so far, the plans for things to come, and convene a panel of ISO members from different regions to discuss their own specific challenges and actions.

Find out how ISO members are transforming their economies and strengthening their climate change policies as part of a commitment to climate action through standards.

Thursday 11:00‑12:00

Hybrid

Gender inequality is one of the most significant human challenges of today. To solve this global challenge, and to achieve full gender equality, it is a necessity that men participate in the conversation and be part of the solution. 

Hear the CEOs of the world’s largest international standards organizations discuss how their own behaviours, privileges, and roles can affect and support the positive transformation of social norms in gender equality and women’s empowerment. Barbershop events are an initiative designed by UNWomen to provide men with tools to address inequality.

#HeForShe 
 

Examine the decisive role of new technologies of the so-called Industry 4.0 and how they can be used to increase circularity.

Combining the circular and digital agendas should arguably contribute to a carbon-neutral future. To achieve this vision, sectors across the world need to invest in advanced technologies, in digitalization and the transition to clean energy.

However, such transitions are expensive, complex and need specific expertise. In this session, participants will examine the decisive, and almost catalytic, role of new technologies of the so-called Industry 4.0 and how they can be used to increase circularity and sustainability in the global economy.

Thursday 11:00‑12:00

Hybrid / Debate

Debate

Join us for a stimulating debate where two opposing thought leaders share their views on ISO’s future.

The pace of the world has changed. Just think about it. In 1947, when ISO came into existence, both access to knowledge and opportunities for collaboration were extremely limited. Today, digital platforms (such as Google, WhatsApp, TikTok and YouTube) are the main channels for disseminating information and ideas.

In this fast-paced world, will ISO still be relevant a decade from now? Join us for a stimulating debate where two opposing thought leaders share their views on ISO’s future and how to remain competitive in the years to come.

Thursday 13:30‑17:00

In-person (with livestream)

General Assembly

The overarching organ and ultimate authority of ISO, the meeting of the General Assembly is the opportunity to exchange with fellow ISO Members as the way forward is charted, together.

Thursday 19:00‑20:00

Virtual

How do standards help make sustainable travel easier?

With rising awareness of the carbon footprint of travelling, consumers expect more from travel service providers. However, claims about sustainable tourism services - especially for those purchased online - can sometimes be opaque and confusing. As a result, many consumers struggle to make informed choices about a "sustainable" holiday.

After a brief presentation of the issues, participants in this session will take a hypothetical holiday to Faunifloria, an imaginary sustainable tourism location. On the journey, they will explore such service aspects as access, information, safety, performance, informed choice, environmental impact, privacy and data protection; and find out what makes a sustainable claim credible - and what tools exist to help make their sustainable holiday successful.

August 11th > The Preliminary Programme Overview is available for download.

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ISO.abudhabi@moiat.gov.ae