(a) A Working Group (WG) is appointed by ITSC or its TC to draft and review a standard and monitor international standards where highly specialised expertise is needed.
(b) A WG is appointed for a specific time period and will be disbanded once the project is completed.
(c) A WG comprises individuals who are appointed for their technical expertise. All WG members shall be jointly appointed by the ITSC Chairman and TC Chairman.
(d)The WG may appoint a WG Secretary from among its members to assist in the administrative management of the WG.
Working Group Composition
(a) Individuals from local industry associations, professional bodies, organisations, academia, research institutes and locally registered companies could be requested to contribute as experts in a WG.
(b) Individual experts from overseas professional bodies, industry associations or research institutions can participate in the WG if they have a locally registered office in Singapore (e.g. ASHRAE Singapore Chapter, Internet Society Singapore Chapter). These organisations should have the relevant expertise and technology that is useful to ITSC’s standardisation programme. The criteria for selection of such organisations include the following:
(i) It should have a representation in Singapore.
(ii) It should be widely recognised for its knowledge or expertise on the subject area covered by the standard.
(iii) If it is a standards development organisation, its standards must be widely recognised and used globally and preferably contributes to or is recognised by the ISO/IEC JTC 1.
(iv) Its standards or studies are referred to in SS or widely used by the local industry. On standards work, these overseas organisations can provide technical inputs but cannot represent Singapore’s view in overseas forums.
(c) Overseas bodies not registered locally can only participate as co-opted members to contribute their expertise in the WG. Co-opted members shall have no voting rights.
(d) All WG members shall meet the following criteria:
(i) Be willing and able to commit resources to actively participate in the WG.
(ii) His/her presence will not create an imbalance of interests within the WG.
For efficiency, technical discussions and consensus building, the WG should keep the size of the WG to a manageable size of up to 15-20 organisational and/or individual members.
Responsibilities of a Working Group
The responsibilities of the Working Group (WG) are as follows:
(a) To draft or review standards [Singapore Standard (SS) and Technical Reference (TR)]. This includes the adoption of international or overseas standards as SS/TR.
(b) To participate in or monitor international standards development as defined by the SC/TC whereby specialised expertise is needed.
(c) To undertake the following actions to help further standardisation work within specified scopes of work given to the WG:
(i) Make an assessment and report (if required) on the resources necessary, taking into consideration and ensuring that there is relevant expertise within the WG to develop the SS or TR, as well as in its participation in or monitoring of relevant International Standards or other relevant standards.
(ii) Ensure that there is balanced representation of the experts from all the key stakeholders, where applicable – industry associations, academia, research centres, professional bodies, government agencies, NGOs, VWOs and consumer association(s). The names of the stakeholders and justifications for the development of the standards are included in the work item proposals endorsed by the SC and Standards Division (Enterprise Singapore). The names of the stakeholders and their representation are also included the SS/TR.
(iii) Ensure the accuracy, clarity, quality control and traceability of the technical content of the draft.
(iv) Ensure that the standards developed are completed through consensus of the content, application and industry/market relevance.
(v) Prepare, endorse and submit all draft new or reviewed standards to the SC/TC for approval, within a pre-agreed time frame and project plan.
(vi) Keep abreast of developments in international standardisation in their respective area of standardisation and to initiate appropriate action to safeguard and advance the interest of the local industry. Where relevant, participate in key international standardisation activities to safeguard and advance the interest of the industry in Singapore. The approval of the Standards Committee and Enterprise Singapore shall be sought on its participation.
(vii) Assist Enterprise Singapore and ITSC Secretariat in answering enquiries pertaining to standards.
(d) To safeguard the intellectual property rights and confidential information of Enterprise Singapore.
(e) To notify Enterprise Singapore of any relevant patent rights in the standards.
(f) To refer all media matters pertaining to the standards or the standardisation programme to Enterprise Singapore. WG Convenor and Members shall not represent Enterprise Singapore or the Standardisation Programme without permission from Enterprise Singapore.
(g) To avoid endorsing any specific organisations, products or services, e.g. WG shall not include the names and trademarks of products and services in SS/TR.
(h) To inform Enterprise Singapore of any patents or proprietary contents to be included in SS/TR.
(i) To attend meetings regularly. If a Member is unable to attend a WG meeting, he may send a stand-in for the meeting, subject to the WG Convenor’s approval. The stand-in shall have no voting rights in the committee. Members appointed in their individual capacity are not allowed to appoint stand-ins for meetings. As a guideline, a Member should not be absent for three consecutive meetings without a valid reason. If a Member is unable to attend the meetings regularly the Member should propose a replacement from his organisation or step down from the WG.
(j) To vote promptly within the stipulated voting period.
(k) To work together with the requestors, key stakeholders and Enterprise Singapore / ITSC Secretariat for the implementation/adoption of the standards and for promotional activities of the SC/TC work, e.g. work with the requestors of the standard, tap on network of stakeholders to incorporate standards in relevant programmes / schemes, speak at standards launches. Prior consultation with and approval of Enterprise Singapore / ITSC Secretariat should be sought where such promotional activities are to be undertaken as representing the work under the Singapore Standardisation Programme by related organisations and channels
(l) To carry out the roles and duties with decorum and in good faith.
Key Role of the Working Group Convenor
The key roles of the Convenor are as follows:
(a) To provide leadership and guidance to the WG to ensure that it discharges its work appropriately in accordance with the Terms of Reference of the WG.
(b) To ensure that the key outcomes of the SC/TC as set out in the Workplan of the SC are met.
(c) To be impartial and always act in good faith, i.e. to take an objective position and be transparent and accountable. In considering the views of the Members, the Convenor should remind them of the need for the WG to reach decisions through consensus.
(d) To be the key party to report on the progress of the work of the WG to the SC/TC on a regular basis. If the WG Convenor is not a SC/TC Member, the Convenor may, at the discretion of the SC/TC, be co-opted as a Member of the SC/TC from the initiation of the standard until the standard is approved by the SC/TC.
(e) To provide guidance and support on the promotion and implementation aspects of the standard under the WG.
(f) With the prior approval of Enterprise Singapore and the Standards Committee, to represent Singapore in international/regional standardisation activities, where necessary.
(g) To present the findings and work of the WG to the SC/TC accurately and objectively.
Key Role of the Working Group Members
The key roles of the Members, as the technical experts, are as follows:
(a) To provide the technical content, experience and views in relation to the standards under the SC/TC’s scope of work including its possible outcomes for stakeholders, e.g. industry, consumers, etc.
(b) To be familiar with the relevant technical matters and have the relevant professional experience and qualifications to effectively contribute to the development and applications of the standard.
(c) To have a good understanding of the process of standards development to ensure that the standardisation principles, process and expectations are adhered to in the preparation of standards.
(d) To provide full information and render assistance to the WG accurately and objectively, and not improperly withhold relevant information within the scope of the standard. Any omission of relevant information could contribute to the production of an inaccurate, false or misleading document.
(e) To undertake roles or activities as assigned by WG Convenor from time to time.
Proceedings of WG Meetings
(a) The quorum for meetings shall be one-third of the members of the WG.
(b) Discussions and decisions taken in the WG meetings must be recorded and the minutes of the WG meeting to be circulated to the WG members, TC Chair, Deputy Chair and Secretary as well as the ITSC Secretariat within 4 weeks after the WG meeting.
(c) Voting is to be done through balloting, either by letter, or at meetings or via email. Members absent at meetings should be given forms to exercise voting by a given date.
(d) In a meeting, questions may be decided by a majority of votes cast at the meetings by members who are present and eligible to vote expressing either approval, disapproval or declared abstention.
(e) The entitlement to vote shall be as follows:
i. WG convenor – one vote
ii. 1 WG member – one vote
iii. When there is more than 1 WG member from the same organisation, only one WG member from that organisation may vote.
(f) WG members who have a conflict of interest on the subject matter under ballot are to declare their interests and to abstain from the ballot.
(g) When voting is called for by letter or email for endorsement or approval of WG work items such as new work items or draft standards for progression to the next stage, at least two-thirds of those who are eligible for voting must cast their votes. Otherwise, the motion will lapse unless the voting period is extended. Negative votes not accompanied by technical reasons and abstentions are excluded when votes are counted. Two-thirds of the valid votes that are cast have to be in favour for the proposal to be approved or endorsed.
Intellectual Property Rights and Confidential Information
(a) All materials in the SS/TR shall be the property of and belong to Enterprise Singapore, including the materials produced during the development or review of the standards except for materials from third parties where permission / licence has been sought.
(b) The source of works (including materials contributed by Members of the Drafting Committee, e.g. TC or WG) shall be highlighted to ITSC and Enterprise Singapore in the “Copyright Declaration Form” provided by Enterprise Singapore so that Enterprise Singapore can ensure that all intellectual property rights in such works are assigned to Enterprise Singapore, or that Enterprise Singapore can secure the proper permissions or licenses from the third parties to incorporate and/or utilise these works in the standard.
(c) All information identified or marked as confidential shall be treated as confidential by the WG and shall not be disclosed by the WG Convenor or Members to third parties without seeking permission from ITSC and Enterprise Singapore.