CEN’s core business is the development of standards that meet the needs of the market. Standardization is performed in a ‘bottom-up’ approach, thereby ensuring the market relevance of the resulting deliverables.
That CEN work is governed by the Technical Board (BT), which monitors and steers all of the standardization activities and has full responsibility for the timely execution of CEN’s work programme. The preparation of the standards belongs to the remit of some 400 Technical Committees (TCs) that each have their own field of operation (scope) within which a work programme of identified standards is developed and executed. TCs work on the basis of national participation by the CEN Members, where delegates represent their respective national point of view. This principle allows the TCs to take balanced decisions that reflect a wide consensus. The real standards development, though, is undertaken by working groups (WGs) where experts, appointed by the CEN Members but speaking in a personal capacity, come together and develop a draft that will become the future standard. This reflects an embedded principle of ‘direct participation’ in the standardization activities.
Work is also performed by CEN together with its sister organizations CENELEC and ETSI. The ways and means of cooperation are laid down in the Internal Regulations Part 2 and, where ETSI is involved, it follows the principles of the CEN-CENELEC-ETSI Basic Cooperation Agreement and the associated Modes of Cooperation.