Opinions of other organizations

Here follow comments, some made by global organizations, some by others, some that voted
„NO“, some that voted “YES”.

A “NO” in this case does not indicate that the organization wouldn’t appreciate the emergence of ISO 26000, but it demonstrates that the current draft should get further improvements specified in their comments, before it could serve as basis for the next step in development and vote (the DIS, Draft International Standard).

A “YES”, accompanied by comments, includes case-wise the argument of the time already used and costs already spent for the project. This is surely an argument, but ISO has put itself with the ISO 26000 on the spotlight and raised high global expectations. In addition, the name ISO stands for quality of content and the ISO 26000 deserves the best possible quality of content.
Therefore, the author (of this website) would rather state for the ISO 26000 in particular:

quality prevails over time.

A worthwhile remark: If one followed the various steps of Working Drafts, one could have observed that many of the arguments of those who declined from promoting the current CD to the DIS phase had already been presented in comments on previous drafts.

All comments of other organizations are reproduced with their permission.

All 3.400+ comments on the Committee Draft can be found on the ISO WG SR server at
where N160 contains the comments and N161 the annexes. N160 is a 640 pages document and it is more than valuable to study the first 46 pages on “general comments” in column 5 with significant proposals on further improvements (reducing the volume to read to more or less 10 normal pages).

Comments by ICC, the International Chamber of Commerce
ICC is the world business organization, a representative body that speaks with authority on behalf of enterprises of all sizes, from all sectors, and in every part of the world. ICC promotes an open international trade and investment system and the market economy, and helps business corporations meet the challenges and opportunities of globalization. Business leaders and experts drawn from ICC’s global membership establish the business stance on broad issues of trade and investment policy as well as on vital technical subjects. ICC was founded in 1919 and today it groups thousands of member companies and associations in 130 countries.

The ICC comment is substantial and more than worthwhile to read; please download it here. In contrast to many other comments seen it addresses a series of basic questions that should be solved before the guidance standard ISO 26000 can be considered a useful business tool.

Comments by IOE, the International Organisation of Employers
Since its creation in 1920 the International Organisation of Employers (IOE) has been recognised as the only organisation at the international level that represents the interests of business in the labour and social policy fields. Today, it consists of 147 national employer organisations from 140 countries from all over the world.

The mission of the IOE is to promote and defend the interests of employers in international fora, particularly in the International Labour Organization (ILO), and to this end works to ensure that international labour and social policy promotes the viability of enterprises and creates an environment favourable to enterprise development and job creation. (2009-03-21 http://www.ioe-emp.org/ )
Like ICC, the IOE voted “NO” on the CD because it
“……still …has substantial technical comments that the IOE believes must be addressed before the document is ready to advance to the DIS stage…”.
The IOE comments (9 pages) can be downloaded here.

Comments by IFAN, the International Federation of Standards Users
The International Federation of Standards Users, IFAN, is an independent, non profit-making international association of national organizations for the application of standards.
IFAN has five categories of members: national, corporate, developing national, prospective corporate and associate members. For more details please see

IFAN voted ‘NO’ on the Committee Draft, because the document (downloadable here) is not considered sufficiently mature to be forwarded to the DIS stage.


Comments by NORMAPME

NORMAPME is an international non-profit association created in 1996 with the support of the “European Commission, under the full name of the “European Office of Crafts, Trades and Small and Medium sized Enterprises for Standardisation”.
NORMAPME is the only European organisation which is exclusively devoted to the interests of Small and Medium sized Enterprises in the European standardisation system. Its members represent over 12 million enterprises in all European countries, including all European Union and European Free Trade Association (EFTA) member states.
(2009-03-30 http://www.normapme.com/english/presentation.htm )

NORMAPME voted ‘NO’ on the committee draft because of its view that as it stands the guidance is not applicable for small and medium enterprises. It should be noted, that this category counts for over 90% of all units in industry and services, see also the estimation of potential users.

The NORMAPME comments can be downloaded here.


Position paper from AFNOR, the French ISO member body (voted ‘Yes’), issued by the
Chairman of the national mirror committee to the ISO WG SR, April 2009

This position paper deliberates on three topics considered important:
1. An ISO standard is not an overriding legal instrument
2. ISO 26000 is not an obstacle to exchange
3. A vote in favour of the dynamics of the project.

The full document is available here in English and in French language. Accompanying mails have assured that this position is also backed by MEDEF, the confederation of French industries.

CCC, the Canadian Chamber of Commerce
As national organization of the ICC (International Chamber of Commerce, Paris) the Canadian Chamber of Commerce, CCC, is the national leader in public policy advocacy on business issues; its mission is to foster a strong, competitive, and profitable economic environment that benefits, not only business, but all Canadians.

The CCC expresses in its position paper clearly that the Canadian national position on ISO 26000 CD (Committee Draft) must include its concerns on

Length, Complexity and Language
The Health and Welfare of Society
The possibility that the ISO 26000 could be used as barrier to trade
The exclusion of Legal Liability for Unforeseen Consequences of Lawful Action, when acting along the guidance offered
Singling out special activities (like extractive industries)
Changes in regard of the “sphere of influence”, the current text being considered unreasonable.
Thus, the Canadian Chamber of Commerce considers ISO 26000 CD not being sufficiently mature. The full document can be downloaded here.

BIAC, the Business and Industry Advisory Committee to the OECD
Founded in 1962 as an independent organisation, BIAC (Business and Industry Advisory Committee) is the officially recognised representative of the OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) business community. BIACs members are the major business organisations in the 30 OECD member countries. Via its 32 standing committees and task forces, BIAC mirrors all economic policy issues the OECD covers, and their impacts on both member and an increasing number of non-member countries like Brazil, China, India and Russia.
All BIAC positions are consensus documents, permitting BIAC to speak with one voice on behalf of the OECD business community.
Source: http://www.biac.org/aboutus.htm (2009-04-29)

The OECD mission is:
OECD brings together the governments of countries committed to democracy and the market economy from around the world to:

  • Support sustainable economic growth
  • Boost employment
  • Raise living standards
  • Maintain financial stability
  • Assist other countries’ economic development
  • Contribute to growth in world trade

The Organisation provides a setting where governments compare policy experiences, seek answers to common problems, identify good practice and coordinate domestic and international policies.
Source: http://www.oecd.org/pages/0,3417,en_36734052_36734103_1_1_1_1_1,00.html (2009-04-29)

BIAC voted YES on the CD but emphasizes in its first general comment: “BIAC supports the advancement to the consultation phase (DIS) but urges the ISO TMB Working Group on Social Responsibility (WGSR) at the next plenary meeting on 18-22 May 2009 in Québec City, Canada, to fully address the BIAC comments made so that they do not need to be repeated in respect of the DIS.

BIAC continues to express concern that SMOs in general will find the present text too abstruse and of little practical value” and proposes “Before progressing beyond the CD level, develop a “beta test” for a sample of all types of organisation to gain feedback on usability.”

The BIAC comments on ISO 26000 CD (Committee Draft) can be downloaded here. It is a Word document of
480 KB and contains 51 pages. It is more than worthwhile to study, especially the “general comments” on the first few pages.

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