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National Standards System - Stakeholders

The National Standards System (NSS) is Canada's network of people and organizations involved in the development, promotion and implementation of standards.

Through the collaborative effort of the system's members, Canada's standards help advance the social and economic well-being of the country, and safeguard the health and safety of Canadians.

Overseen by the Standards Council of Canada, the National Standards System consists of more than 400 organizations and 15,000 volunteers. The system is made up of:

  • Consumers and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) - These stakeholders ensure that the NSS takes into account societal concerns, including the environment, health, safety and privacy. Consumers and NGO representatives bring the human element to the development of standards and standards strategies.
  • Governments - Governments rely on the NSS to help them negotiate trade agreements as part of the regulatory system. Government participation ensures that the NSS supports trade and public policy.
  • Industry - Businesses and manufacturers rely on the standards and conformity assessment services of the NSS to develop and market products globally. Industry's participation helps ensure standards and standards strategies are good for business.
  • International and regional standardization bodies - These organizations work towards the global harmonization of standards to liberalize trade, address common societal issues and safeguard consumers. Their work towards the international acceptance of conformity assessment reports and marks can reduce the cost and time involved in having products approved.
  • Conformity assessment bodies – These organizations help ensure standards are being used as intended. They include:

- Calibration and testing laboratories
- Inspection bodies
- Management Systems certification bodies
- Personnel certifiers
- Product/Service Certification bodies

  • Standards development organizations - Canada's standards development organizations work with some 15,000 volunteers to develop Canadian standards and adopt or adapt international standards for use in Canada.

  • The Standards Council of Canada (SCC) - The Standards Council of Canada oversees the National Standards System. It accredits standardization organizations, verifying that they have the resources, structures and expertise to deliver trustworthy services. SCC approves National Standards of Canada, and represents Canada in key regional and international standardization forums.