Geneva Digital Atlas

Digital Standards

Our digital reality is shaped by the standards guiding the manufacture and use of digital devices and services. Such standards foster interoperability, quality of service, and safety. Thus, they have high importance for innovation, economic growth, safety, and the sustainability of the digital space. Increasingly, human rights and the public interest are entering the focus of digital standards, especially those dealing with data, AI, and biotechnology. As policy implementation instruments, standards are increasingly used to address topics where countries do not agree on international conventions.

The global standardisation landscape is very complex, consisting of a diverse set of organisations, working methods, and procedures. Geneva is home to all three major formal standardisation organisations: The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) for telecommunications standards, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) for business and security standards, and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) for electronic device standards.