The American National Standards Institute

The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) has served in its capability as administrator and organiser of the United States personal sector voluntary standardization system for over 100 years. Founded in 1918 by five engineering groups and three government agencies, the Institute remains a non-public, nonprofit membership organization supported by various body of personal and public sector organizations.
Throughout its history, ANSI has maintained as its main goal the enhancement of global competitiveness of U.S. business and the American quality of life by advertising and facilitating voluntary consensus standards and conformity assessment systems and advertising their integrity. The Institute represents the interests of its over 1,200 company, organization, government agency, institutional and international members through its office in New York City, and its headquarters in Washington, D.C.
National Standardization
ANSI facilitates the development of American National Standards (ANS) by giving credit to the procedures of standards developing organizations (SDOs). These societies work cooperatively to develop voluntary national consensus standards. Credits given by ANSI signifies that the steps used by the standards body in connection with the development of American National Standards meet the Institute’s essential needs for openness, balance, consensus and due process.
ANSI is often questioned about the total number of standards (and standards setting bodies) in the United States. It is roughly estimated that in the U.S. today there are hundreds of “conventional” standards in building organizations – with the 20 largest SDOs producing 90% of the standards – and hundreds more “non-conventional” standards development bodies, such as consortia. This means that the standard level of U.S. participation is quite expansive as the societies themselves are comprised of individual committees made up of experts addressing the technical requirements of standards within their certain area of expertise.
As of January 2018, some 237 standards developers were given by ANSI; there were more than 11,500 American National Standards.
In order to maintain ANSI original work, standards builders are required to consistently follow a set of needs or procedures known as the ” ANSI Essential Requirements”, that govern the consensus build process. Due process is the key to ensuring that ANSs are matured in an environment that is equitable, accessible and active to the requirements of various stakeholders. The open and fair ANS process ensures that all excited and affected parties have an opportunity to compete in a standard’s expansion. It also serves and protects the public interest since standards developers given credit by ANSI must meet the Institute’s requirements for openness, balance, consensus and other due operating safeguards.
That is why American National Standards are sometimes stated to as “accessible” standards. During this sense, “accessible” refers to a method utilized by a sanctioned body for developing and accepting a standard. The Institute’s definition of openness has many elements, but basically refers to a collaborative, equitable and consensus-based validation process. The content of these standards could relate to product, methods, services, systems or personnel.
In its role as the only originator of U.S. voluntary consensus standards developing organizations, ANSI helps to make sure that the integrity of the standards builders that use our ANSI Essential Requirements: Due process requirements for American National Standards. A split process, based on the same rules, checks whether standards meet the required or necessary criteria to be accepted as American National Standards. Our process for acceptance of these standards (currently numbering roughly around 11,500) is needed to verify that the principles of transparency and due process have been followed and that a consensus of all interested stakeholder societies has been reached.
International Standardization
ANSI promotes the employment of U.S. standards internationally, advocates U.S. policy and technical positions in international and regional standards organizations, and encourages the adoption of international standards as national standards wherever they meet the requirements of the user community.
The Institute is that the sole U.S. representative and dues-paying member of the 2 major non-treaty international standards organizations, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), and, via the U.S. National Committee (USNC), the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). As a creator member of the ISO, ANSI plays a strong leadership role in its governing body while U.S. participation, via the USNC, is equally superior in the IEC.
Through ANSI, the U.S. has direct access to the ISO and IEC standards development processes. ANSI attends in almost the entire technical program of both the ISO and the IEC, and manages many key committees and subgroups. Part of its duties as the U.S. member body to the ISO include giving credits to U.S. Technical Advisory Groups (U.S. TAGs), whose primary motivation is to develop and distribute, via ANSI, U.S. positions on duties and ballots of the international Technical Committee. U.S. positions for the IEC are endorsed and closely watched by the USNC Technical Management Committee (TMC).
In many examples, U.S. standards are taken towards to ISO and IEC, through ANSI or the USNC, where they get in whole or in part as international standards. For this excuse, ANSI plays an important role in creating international standards that support the worldwide sale of products, which blocks regions from utilizing local standards to favor their local industries. Since the people volunteers from industry and government, not ANSI staff, carried out the work of the international technical communities, the passed of these efforts often is dependent upon the motivation of U.S. industry and government to start the resources required to ensure strong U.S. technical attendance in the international standards process.
Conformity Assessment
Conformity Assessment, the words used to describe procedures taken by both builders and solo third parties to find fulfillment of standards requirements, also remains a high priority for the Institute. ANSI’s program for giving credits to third-party product certification have experienced uprising growth in recent years, and the Institute continues its efforts to obtain worldwide acceptance of accredited certifications shown in the U.S.
One of the best signs of the strength of the U.S. system is the government’s reliance on, and use of, non-public sector voluntary standards. Pursuant to OMB Circular A119, federal government agencies are required to use voluntary standards for restrictive and procurement functions when appropriate. State and local governments and agencies have formally adopted thousands of voluntary standards created by ANSI, and the process appears to be faster.
In summary, ANSI continues to be fully committed in its support of the checklist of U.S. and global standardization and remains committed to optimize of the quality of life for all global citizens.