Standards SIG Objectives

OFE Standardisation SIG
Charter adopted in Brussels on 20 May 2008
Founding Members:Oracle, IBM, Sun
Ars Aperta,The European Software Market Association (ESOMA)
Mission Statement:
Promote the importance of open standards within interoperability.
Specific topics and agreed views:

1. Definition of open standards

  • See Roadmap for Open ICT Ecosystems, Harvard, 20052
  •  Proprietary standards are NOT open

2. Licensing terms and IPR

  •  Preference for royalty free for software interoperability standards
  •  Promotion of improvements to IPR policies and IPR matters which improve the predictability of licensing terms and conditions, e.g. promotion of ex ante disclosure of IPR.
  •  No opinion on patents as such (SIG member views differ)

3. Public Procurement

  •  IT procurement must require open standards (and define the term)
  •  Public procurement must require interoperability
  •  No reference to proprietary products without wording “or equivalents”

4. Make sure ODF is competitive vis-a-vis OOXML

  •  Liaise with OFEs ODF SIG
  •  Liaise with OFEs activities vis-a-vis European Parliament

5. Specific requirements for Software

  •  Open standards are key for achieving software interoperability
  •  Only standards that are widely implemented are effective
  •  IPR which is required for interoperability should not be monetized

6. Strategic/political importance of standards issues

  •  Standards should be higher on the political agenda


Modus Operandi
Promote active and informed comment and debate on key areas related to subject. Make recommendations to OFE Executive Council as appropriate. Upon agreement initiate and lead activities, in particular, participate in detailed discussions and negotiations with EC. Output may be face to face, written, discussion/briefings, or campaigning.



1. While the SIG operates on an invitation only basis, observers can include any company, SME, lawyer, academic or consultant who the Chair (in concordance with OFE) finds appropriate.