2016 - Ed. 6
ANEC seeks an expert on safety of ICT & AV equipment
We are looking for a volunteer with expertise in the area of safety of ICT and audio-video equipment (mobile phones, television sets, etc.) to represent ANEC in standardisation work at the European (CENELEC/TC 108x) and international (IEC/TC 108) levels. It is expected work will be carried out by correspondence on the whole, with up to four meetings annually.
Although unable to offer a salary or honorarium, we do cover the travel, accommodation and subsistence expenses of our volunteer experts in line with the rules laid down by the EC and EFTA. Above all, we offer the possibility to our experts to influence legislation and technical standards to the benefit of all in society.
For more information, please see the vacancy notice.
TACD resolution on TBTs to trade in TTIP
On 9 September, the Transatlantic Consumer Dialogue (TACD) published a new policy resolution on Technical Barriers to Trade (TBTs) in the context of the proposed Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). The paper includes examination of the differences between the US and EU standards-making models and makes recommendations to EU and US negotiators on how these distinct approaches could be reconciled to bring about more cooperation, without lowering essential safety levels.
ANEC co-authored the paper, focusing on the EU situation and related recommendations. The Resolution will be discussed with US and EU officials on 13 September during a roundtable in Washington, DC.
“European standards for the 21st century”
On 7 September, ANEC Secretary-General, Stephen Russell, was a speaker at a Single Market Roundtable hosted by the European Policy Centre (EPC) on “European standards for the 21st century”, further to publication of the “Standards Package II” by the European Commission on 1 June.
Mr Russell spoke about standards not only being a keystone for trade in the Single Market for goods, but in contributing to consumer confidence and protection. He then reflected on how standards could help meet the challenges consumers face in the 21st century.
Children’s chair mounted seats
ANEC welcomed approval in August 2016 of an amendment to the European standard for chair mounted seats, EN 16120-A1/FprA2. This is further to a change made to the amendment after its submission to public enquiry in 2015 when ANEC opposed the draft as it provided lateral protection for children only up to 18 months of age, in conflict with EU Commission Decision (2013/121/EU) on safety requirements for certain seats for children.
The Commission Decision indicates that the chair “must also be fitted with side armrests that are high enough to ensure that a child remains in the seat when he or she leans in any direction”. It does not state an age restriction. The deletion of the age limit from the amendment enabled ANEC to support its adoption.
“The consumer views on the proposal for an EAA”
On 2 December 2015, the Commission adopted a long-awaited proposal for a Directive on the approximation of the laws, regulations and administrative provisions of the Member States as regards the accessibility requirements for products and services (COM(2015) 615final), also known as the European Accessibility Act (EAA).
Although welcoming the EAA, as we support the elaboration of a legal basis for the accessibility of products and services to be underpinned by standardisation, ANEC has suggestions for its improvement. In July, we published a new leaflet which briefly outlines our views on the proposal and our ideas.
3rd International Conference on Universal Design
ANEC participated in the 3rd International Conference on Universal Design, held on 21-24 August in York, UK. The aim of the conference was to allow leading practitioners and researchers in the field to discuss universal design, design for all and inclusive design from both practical and theoretical viewpoints.
Jenny Darzentas, Chair of the ANEC Accessibility Working Group, presented a paper ‘Educating Students About Standardisation Relating to Universal Design’. It examines this standardisation education, which is rarely taught to students in the design disciplines, and elaborates on some of the possible reasons for this situation. Moreover, it gives an example of how students may be instructed and encouraged to further their interests in standards and the standards-making process as a means for increasing Universal Design in practice.
All papers presented at the conference can be found in the publication “Ebook: Universal Design 2016: Learning from the Past, Designing for the Future”.
CEN Workshop, “Standards for circular economy”
On 8 September, ANEC joined a workshop on “standards for circular economy waste management and secondary raw materials” hosted by CEN.
The event saw an interesting debate on what the European Commission envisages in this area and a presentation of what businesses already do to respond to the challenges of the circular economy concept.
An ECOS presentation on the civil society perspective started a useful exchange on the need to address chemical safety of products in light of the focus given on recycling and re-use of materials. DG Environment presented the actions in the circular economy package and the expected collaboration with standardisers.
We found the event a useful opportunity to hear the state of play, and promote our views on the role of standards in the circular economy and need for a legislative framework to address hazardous chemicals in consumer articles.
The recent CEN brochure - Standardization and the Environment was highlighted. It explains how environmental concerns can be incorporated into standards and how standardisation can achieve sustainable development goals.
Draft Rolling Plan for ICT standardisation 2017
The European Commission’s Rolling Plan for ICT standardisation is being reviewed in order to have a revision available next year. For 2017, the Commission proposes new domains as well as updates to existing priorities. To this end, in early September, ANEC submitted comments on the draft Rolling Plan for ICT standardisation 2017. We provided proposals with respect to actions linked to, among others, eHealth, active and healthy ageing, accessibility of ICT products and services, smart grids and smart metering, smart cities, and Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS).
Public enquiry on draft CEN CWA SATORI
SATORI is a 45-month project, comprising 17 partners from 12 countries, including an intergovernmental organisation, the aim of which is to improve respect of ethics principles and laws in research and innovation, and to make sure that they are adequately adapted to the evolution of technologies and societal concerns. ANEC is pleased to be part of the SATORI project Advisory Board. As part of the project Work Packages, a draft CEN Workshop Agreement on ethics assessment for research and innovation has been developed. The draft CEN CWA has two parts: CWA SATORI – Ethics assessment for research and innovation – Part 1 Ethics assessment unit, and CWA SATORI – Ethics assessment for research and innovation – Part 2 Ethical impact assessment framework.
On 15 September, the draft CEN CWA SATORI documents were published for public comments, for a period of two months, to 15 November 2016. Stakeholders outside the project, including members of CEN/TC 389 on Innovation management, will be able to send comments on the document. Comments can be submitted via the CEN-CENELEC website or using the digital tool www.normontwerpen.nen.nl.
The comments received will be discussed at the SATORI CWA meeting in Ljubljana in January 2017 after which the document will be published.
Privacy and security in smart metering
The CEN-CENELEC-ETSI Smart Meters Coordination Group has published its fourth report on privacy & security. It includes a summary of minimum security requirements, an update on the European Commission’s work in this field and an update of the status of European security standardisation.
ANEC commented on the draft, noting that ongoing work to strengthen privacy will be required alongside the testing of data protection measures. We also highlighted the current approach for addressing actual security issues in standardisation relies on Member States notifying the standardisation bodies, and is therefore entirely reactive. We therefore recommended a more proactive approach whereby the Smart Meter Coordination Group actively seeks information from Member States on security and privacy issues that impact standardisation.
The report has been launched together with the “Report on Minimum Security Requirements for smart metering” and the Repository with links to the original requirements from member states with the minimum requirements For more see http://goo.gl/fUlPuo.
New ISO standard on mobile banking
Mobile banking is increasingly used by consumers, raising a need for better consumer protection in this fast growing service. ISO has developed a series of standards, ISO 12812 ‘Core banking – mobile financial services’, that defines common terms and requirements which support mobile payments.
Consumers International (CI), ANEC’s partner, has been active in the development of the standards to ensure they reflect the needs of consumers. Thanks to CI, the standards promote the protection of consumers in mobile financial services. For example, they include safeguards on logging transactions and liability limits applying to the consumer in case of online banking fraud.
ANEC’s first blogpost on Consumer Champion
In September, ANEC published a blogpost on Consumer Champion, a capacity building programme for European Consumer Professionals.
Our first blogpost ‘Standardisation: for industry only?’ provides answers to some key questions on standards, such as what standardisation is, how it works and what the future holds. It also explains why consumer representation is needed in the writing of standards to ensure products are safe, interoperable, accessible and sustainable.
Becoming an ANEC expert
In order to fulfil its mission to raise standards of protection and welfare for all consumers, ANEC requires experts who are willing to participate in its Working Groups and, ideally, to represent ANEC in the technical bodies of the European (and International) Standards Organisations. Our new leaflet, Becoming an ANEC expert, outlines the tasks and responsibilities of our experts.
News from ANEC member countries
Bulgaria - Roundtable on sustainable consumption, Sofia
On 8 September, a roundtable “Sustainable consumption in Bulgaria – the voice of consumers” was hosted by the University of National and World Economy (UNWE) in Sofia, Bulgaria. The conference gathered representatives of national authorities, consumer organisations, business associations and academia. The aim was for participants to discuss what steps could be taken to ensure that the voice of Bulgarian consumers is heard in the development of public polices, laws and standards.
ANEC Programme Officer, Kristina Aleksandrova, presented ANEC and the model of consumer representation in standardisation at the EU level. We must thank our member of the ANEC General Assembly from Bulgaria, Professor Elka Vassileva, for the invitation.
Photo: UNWE, Bulgaria
For comments or if you wish to write an article for the ANEC Newsletter, please contact: Kristina Aleksandrova (email@example.com).
ANEC is supported by the European Commission and EFTA.