About

ISO describes conformity assessment as ‘a set of processes that show your product, service or system meets the requirements of a standard’. (Source: ISO website)

Conformity assessment has a range of strands, all of which contribute to giving people confidence and assurance in using and buying products and services. These strands include testing, inspection, certification and accreditation.

There are many instances around the world where the public sector has embraced conformity assessment as a means of delivering public policy objectives. This site illustrates this with a range of case studies which demonstrate:

  • Government can improve its own performance by the use of conformity assessment by its own departments
  • Government can help improve the performance of business by encouraging the use of conformity assessment
  • Conformity assessment can help government deliver its policies
  • Conformity assessment helps regulators regulate.

By showcasing the policy areas conformity assessment is used, such as economic development, healthcare and environmental protection, the intention is to provide inspiration so more conformity assessment tools can be used by central government, local government and regulators to deliver positive benefit.

This site has been developed by This site has been developed by the global quality infrastructure partners (INetQI) represented by:

  • IAF – International Accreditation Forum. The IAF is the world association of Conformity Assessment Accreditation Bodies and other bodies interested in conformity assessment in the fields of management systems, products, services, personnel and other similar programmes of conformity assessment. Its primary function is to develop a single worldwide program of conformity assessment which reduces risk for business and its customers by assuring them that accredited certificates may be relied upon. Accreditation assures users of the competence and impartiality of the body accredited.
  • IIOC –  Independent International Organisation for Certification – is a trade association of international certification bodies who deliver certification to a range of management system schemes.
  • IQNet – International Certification Network– is a trade association of certification bodies from around the world who deliver certification to a range of management system schemes.
  • ILAC – International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation. ILAC is responsible for: the development of laboratory and inspection body accreditation practices and procedures; the promotion of laboratory and inspection body accreditation as a trade facilitation tool; the assistance of developing accreditation systems; the recognition of competent test and inspection facilities around the globe.
  • ISO – International Organization for Standards – is an independent, non-governmental membership organization and the world’s largest developer of voluntary International Standards.
  • BIPM – The International Bureau of Weights and Measures (BIPM) – an international organization established by the Metre Convention, through which Member States act together on matters related to measurement science and measurement standards.
  • IEC – International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) – an international organization responsible for the preparation and publication of International Standards for all electrical, electronic and related technologies.
  • ITC – International Trade Centre (ITC) – an international development agency that is dedicated to supporting the internationalization of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). It is a joint agency of the World Trade Organization and the United Nations.
  • ITU – International Telecommunication Union (ITU) – an international agency for telecom/ICT of the United Nations, whose members include 193 Member States as well as some 900 companies, universities, and international and regional organizations. It allocates global radio spectrum and satellite orbits, develops the technical standards that ensure networks and technologies seamlessly interconnect, and strive to improve access to ICTs to underserved communities worldwide.
  • OIML – International Organizations of Legal Metrology (OIML) – an intergovernmental organisation to promote the global harmonization of the legal metrology procedures that underpin and facilitate international trade.
  • UNECE – United Nations Economic Cooperation for Europe (UNECE) – one of the five regional commissions under the jurisdiction of the United Nations Economic and Social Council. It was established in order to promote economic cooperation and integrations among its Member States.
  • UNIDO – United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) – a specialized agency of the United Nations that promotes industrial development for poverty reduction, inclusive globalization and environmental sustainability.
  • World Bank Group (WBG) – an international financial institution that provides loans and grants to the governments of poorer countries for the purpose of pursuing capital projects.
  • WTO – World Trade Organization (WTO) – a global international organization dealing with the rules of trade between nations. At its heart are the WTO agreements, negotiated and signed by the bulk of the world’s trading nations and ratified in their parliaments.

We are always seeking examples to post on this website. If you have a great case study or research paper, please submit it to here.

Slideshow Items

  • Latest research

    A Review of Certification and its Impact on Regulatory Intervention (July 2021)

    This paper explores the interplay between regulations and standards, and the value that third-party certification provides as means to ensure that food manufactured into the market in the Netherlands are safe for consumers. It draws on data from the results of audits of industrial food businesses by the regulator against the requirements of National and […]


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  • Recent Case Study

    Improving Drinking Water Monitoring in Croatia

    Summary The accreditation supports monitoring of drinking water in Croatia through the accreditation of drinking water testing laboratories that are further authorised by the Croatian Ministry of Health (MoH) for drinking water monitoring. With its accredited laboratories, the Croatian Institute of Public Health (CIPH) coordinates monitoring. It is also one of the national contact points […]


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  • Recent Supporting Material

    USING AND REFERENCING ISO AND IEC STANDARDS TO SUPPORT PUBLIC POLICY

    Please download the PDF document here


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  • Recent Case Study

    Southern African Development Cooperation (SADC) Regional Laboratory Association (SRLA): OUR UNIQUE SUCCESS STORY

    SUMMARY The SADC Regional Laboratory Association (SRLA) was established over a decade ago in order to support, assist and empower member states by providing them with a regional platform and voice. Furthermore, the SRLA promotes the importance of laboratories in the SADC economy; strengthens both management and technical capacity through training and interventions; builds and […]


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  • Recent Case Study

    Labels and ‘slogans’ on the sustainability of products and services: how to orientate yourself?

    Focusing on sustainability grows business and attracts consumer confidence. This is why ethical claims have become more widespread in the market. But how can you tell if these claims are true and verified? Businesses have long understood that focusing on sustainability grows business and attracts the trust of consumers, who are increasingly attentive to social […]


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  • Recent Case Study

    Offer greater clarity to investors in their investment choices in favor of the development of a sustainable economy

    Summary Socially responsible investment (SRI) takes into account several themes such as social, ethical, environmental and governance criteria. The accreditation issued by Cofrac – the French accreditation body – concerns certification bodies that are accredited to assess and certify, in the form of a label, good practices in socially responsible investment. This accredited certification provides […]


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  • Recent Case Study

    Improving Trust in Forensic Science

    Summary The accreditation supports public health systems in West Africa, especially with the COVID-19 pandemic. The Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has a regional standardization mechanism called ECOSHAM. The latter allowed the adoption of two regional standards, for the benefit of all member states, relating to hand sanitizers and barrier masks for use by […]


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  • Recent Case Study

    Energy management system certification supports environment-friendly and resource-conserving society in China

    Energy management system certification is technical support for building an “environment-friendly and resource-conserving” society in China. The national standard Energy management system—Requirements (GB/T 23331-2012/ISO 50001:2011) was published on December 31, 2012, and took effect on October 1, 2013. Altogether 6303 energy management system certificates have been issued for 6028 organizations in China by the end […]


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  • Recent Case Study

    Forensic unit accreditation improves social governance level in China

    The results of forensic identification concern the realization of judicial fairness and protection of citizens’ legitimate rights. In 2005, China issued the Decisions on Forensic Identification Management Problems. In the Decisions, Article 5 clearly stipulates that the forensic units engaged in forensic medicine, material evidence, and audio-visual material identification shall “have the testing laboratory with […]


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  • Recent Case Study

    CNAS medical laboratory accreditation supports good health and well being

    Medical laboratories play an important role in the evaluation of human health status, the correct diagnosis, treatment and prognosis of diseases. The quality and technical level of medical laboratory are directly related to the health and well-being of the public. China National Accreditation Service for Conformity Assessment (CNAS) issued the first medical laboratory accreditation certificate […]


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