News of the ASTM International Board of Directors
ASTM International's board of directors met Oct. 18-21 in Seattle, Washington. Here is a summary of reports made and actions taken at those meetings.
For more information on meeting content, contact ASTM President James A. Thomas (tel +1.610.832.9598).
Finance and Audit
The board approved all proposed ASTM budgets as well as the appointment of Taco van der Maten to serve as chairman of the 2016 Finance and Audit Committee. Van der Maten is marketing manager at PANalytical in Almelo, the Netherlands. He is chairman of Committee F40 on Declarable Substances in Materials and a member of Committees D02 on Petroleum Products, Liquid Fuels and Lubricants and D20 on Plastics. Van der Maten has served on our board since 2013.
The board approved a revised mission statement for ASTM:
Committed to serving global societal needs, ASTM International positively impacts public health and safety, consumer confidence and overall quality of life. We integrate consensus standards, developed with our international membership of volunteer technical experts, and innovative services to improve lives - helping our world work better.
The board granted society recognition to the Committee E17 Billiard-Stubstad Award. Committee E17 on Vehicle–Pavement Systems established the award in memory of members Gary Billiard and Richard Stubstad to recognize those who have made exemplary technical, practical and/or administrative contributions to the pavement engineering community through standards development efforts.
The board approved the discharge of Committee F29 on Anesthetic and Respiratory Equipment. The now-disbanded committee had held the secretariat and numerous technical advisory groups under the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) Technical Committee 121 on Anesthetic and Respiratory Equipment. In 2014 the administration of the secretariat and the TAGs were transferred to the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation.
Teresa Cendrowska, vice president of global cooperation at ASTM, reported on her division's work around the world. Here are a few highlights:
- Cendrowska and Katharine Morgan, executive vice president, attended the ISO General Assembly in Seoul, Korea, in September. There, they participated in more than a dozen meetings with MOU partners to discuss opportunities and get updates on their use of ASTM standards.
- Montenegro is the most recent signatory to our memorandum of understanding program, which establishes formal relationships between ASTM and national and regional standards bodies in developing nations. To date, the total number of MOUs is 95.
- Global cooperation hosts visitors from standards developing organizations worldwide through a variety of programs. In 2016, standards experts from the Mauritius Standards Bureau, the Kazakhstan Institute for Standardization and Certification, and the Dominican Republic's la Dirección General de Normas y Sistemas de Calidad will work at ASTM. For the attached staff program, Cendrowska's division will host one staff member from Korea and two from Kenya. And the recent call for applications to the ASTM Technical Visitor Grant Program resulted in the selection of a cement/concrete/masonry units expert from Rwanda as a grant recipient.
- In August, Cendrowska attended the African Regional Standards Organization General Assembly in Ethiopia and presented on standards development for international market access and relevance.
- Cendrowska reported that ASTM's ongoing outreach in the Middle East is being supported over the next two years in part by a U.S. Department of Commerce International Trade Administration grant and partnership with the International Code Council.
Jeffrey Grove, vice president of global policy and industry affairs, reported that Washington staff continues to engage with representatives of industry associations and companies to promote a greater awareness of our global objectives.
- This year, ASTM co-sponsored an event on Capitol Hill on "Standards in the House: How Standards Protect the Nation's Citizens." Congressional staffers toured exhibits by ASTM, other standards developers and trade associations to learn how standards help make better buildings.
- In June, at the invitation of our board member Scott Colburn of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, ASTM participated at the FDA Center for Devices and Radiological Health's Standards Developing Organization Day. Staff discussed the role of the government in ASTM, FDA's use of ASTM standards and ASTM's signature online platform, Compass® with FDA staffers.
- The Washington office staff participated in late July at the National Institute for Standards and Technology's Standards Boot Camp. The program provided an interactive forum for federal agency personnel to expand their knowledge of standards and standards development and to better understand the relationships between product design and manufacturing, standards and conformity assessment, and trade.
- In July, Grove was invited by the trade association BIO to make a presentation on "Standards for the Global Biobased Marketplace" at the World Congress on Industrial Biotechnology in Montreal, Canada. Grove also served as a panelist in September at the International Promotional Products Association's fifth annual Product Safety Summit in Bethesda, Maryland, to discuss how voluntary standards enhance the safety of products and materials.
Grove reported on the activities of our Office of European Affairs in Brussels, Belgium, which engages in policy and trade issues, connects with ASTM members in Europe and conducts outreach meetings.
- Sebastian Zaleski, of the European Commission's Directorate-General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs, joined a recent workshop commemorating the 10-year anniversary of Committee F40 on Declarable Substances in Materials. Via teleconference, he presented an overview of current EU policies and programs supporting the development of the mining and metals industries.
- ASTM contributed to ongoing discussion of transatlantic issues during the Ernst and Young review of the European standardization system, which culminated in a roundtable on July 1 in Brussels. Sara Gobbi, our Brussels representative, submitted ASTM's written contribution to the European Commission based on input from some European ASTM members.
- In June, Pat Picariello, an ASTM director, addressed the Additive Manufacturing European Conference. Picariello stressed the importance of promoting knowledge, supporting global collaboration, stimulating research and implementing technology through the development of global standards for additive manufacturing technologies.
- ASTM senior staff has engaged in many discussions on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. In May, Jeff Grove participated in a T-TIP workshop organized by the Center for Transatlantic Relations at Johns Hopkins University. In June, President James Thomas discussed the role of standards in trade and regulation at the 20th EURAS (European Academy for Standardization) Conference in Copenhagen, Denmark. Other staff has continued to visit with U.S. commercial affairs and trade officials in Brussels and Washington, D.C., to share perspectives and insights.
Daniel Smith, vice president of technical committee operations, reported on developments in Canada and recent outreach efforts there.
- In July, Health Canada proposed major modifications to the regulation of cribs, cradles and bassinets to enhance safety and better align Canada's requirements with those of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, which references relevant ASTM standards. Health Canada has actively collaborated with the CPSC through its participation on the ASTM crib, cradle and bassinet standards subcommittee and in discussions with CPSC staff.
- Health Canada participated in the development of the new ASTM standard F3159, Consumer Safety Specification for Liquid Laundry Packets. In addition, work continues on the alignment of the regulatory requirements for children's toys in Canada and ASTM F963, Consumer Safety Specification for Toy Safety.
Cendrowska reported on outreach activities led by her staff and our Latin American office in Peru. One example is the programs ASTM has been developing with the U.S. Agency for International Development's Standards Alliance program. These include textiles training (Central America and Peru), medical devices (Peru) and understanding good regulatory practice and technical barriers to trade (Mexico).
Cendrowska noted that our China office continues to support and promote ASTM standards for several sectors in China, including energy, mobility, fibers and furniture. They also track developments in that country's standardization reform efforts. Our staff is responding to increasing requests from national ministries and local enterprises for training on our standards development process and services. They are also working with headquarters staff on an increased number of new work item proposals submitted from China.
Certification, Training and Proficiency Testing
Timothy Brooke, vice president of certification, training and proficiency testing, reported on the continued growth of this division.
- To date, nine product category rules have been developed for a number of building material sectors, in partnership with trade associations and technical committee experts with several more in development. We continue to serve manufacturers by reviewing their life-cycle assessments and verifying their environmental product declarations.
- There are currently 119 e-learning courses available, with 49 in development. The filming of live courses for subsequent online viewing continues, with classes in subjects such as corrosion, light sport aircraft and aviation fuels, are in the works.
- Our learning management system, which allows Compass® users to manage their training, has a refreshed interface and provides users with reports, user guidelines and manuals.
- Improvements are underway for a new proficiency testing system that will reduce administrative burdens on participants, shorten new program development timelines, create new reporting functionality and deploy an alert system for users.
Brian Meincke, assistant vice president, business development, discussed ongoing work to enhance our standards program and other services to business and industry.
- At the request of the Society for Human Resource Management, ASTM will host an organizational meeting in December to explore standards for HR management. Stakeholders hope that consensus standards in this area can empower HR practitioners and their organizations to practice more effectively and consistently.
- Other potential activities in the exploratory phase include human spaceflight, intellectual property management and energy efficiency in the built environment.
- Beyond standards development, potential service expansions include a new program operator consortium, training in additive manufacturing and a certificate program for nanontechnology applications.
Teresa Cendrowska reported on academic outreach efforts, which are overseen from her division. Additionally, Cendrowska noted that as a result of a successful pilot program for emerging professionals held at June committee week, the program will continue in 2016. The Emerging Professionals Program helps ASTM technical committees engage the next generation of technical experts who have demonstrated potential to be industry and committee leaders. Some ASTM committees have nominated such candidates. Those selected will attend a special workshop at the November committee week and participate alongside their mentors in the technical committee meetings.
Nathan Osburn, director of corporate communications, outlined several accomplishments, including:
- A highly visible launch of Committee F46 on Aerospace Personnel, which included a branded video highlighting the committee's mission (a stronger pipeline of aviation technicians), a high-impact email promotion, and an op-ed published in the Kansas City Star, a major U.S. newspaper.
- A campaign that emphasizes ASTM's global leadership in smart manufacturing, which tied together ASTM's new Smart Manufacturing Advisory Committee, this issue of Standardization News, sponsorship of a National Manufacturing Day event and an additive manufacturing conference, the creation of a web portal, a promotional video, the launch of an upcoming journal and more.
- Continued integration of branding across global offices, internal communications, brochures and more.
- Proactive media relations on mainstream stories (e.g., laundry detergent packets) and trade publications.
- Strong growth in social media audiences.