What Is the Purpose of the ISO?

by Paul Cartmell; Updated September 26, 2017

The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is a global organization responsible for developing new standards for products and services. Each of its 163 member countries has its own office. The ISO's headquarters are in Geneva, Switzerland.

Development

The ISO website reports the organization is responsible for developing standards for products and services that identify a need for standardization. The ISO is usually contacted by a sector of an industry or stakeholders in a product and asked to develop a standard, such as those created for manufacturing.

Legislation

The ISO helps governments around the world create environmental, health and safety policies. The ISO helps test products during the standard-setting process. Many international trade agreements also incorporate ISO standards.

Safety

ISO standards allow consumers to buy and use products in safety, according to the ISO website. The use of ISO branding allows products to be produced safely and efficiently.

About the Author

Paul Cartmell began his career as a writer for documentaries and fictional films in the United Kingdom in the mid-1990s. Working in documentary journalism, Cartmell wrote about a wide variety of subjects including racism in professional sports. Cartmell attended the University of Lincoln and London Metropolitan University, gaining degrees in journalism and film studies.