Globalisation Forces an Acceleration of Standardization Processes
The increase in the intensity of competition in recent years, especially in markets for industrial products, has increased the pressure for businesses to innovate. This finds expression in an accelerated introduction of new products and processes, leading to a shortening of product life cycles. Equally, the pressure to innovate also increased the pressure on research and development processes of businesses. For this reason, the patent system and the standardization system get under pressure, because these systems for codifying and saving intellectual property rights need time for necessary inspections and to reach a consensus on different proposed specifications. This article focuses on the standardization system. Under the condition of temporal pressure, there are three possibilities for standardization: abstaining from standardization, switch to non consensus-based industrial standardization or accelerate the standardization process. This article examines if standardization organisations have successfully accelerated their processes to survive in the sandwich position between shortened product cycles and accelerated market introduction of products. It turns out that the acceleration has succeeded – through a series of institutional reforms, such as a prioritization of international before the national standards by the beginning and middle of the last decade agreements.